After being bad parents and missing Clare's 15 month appointment, we finally scheduled her 18 month appt with a doc here in the city. This was just a routine, well-baby visit. But of course a first visit to a new doc means a lot of paperwork and a lot of questions.
Unfortunately, after getting Clare undressed down to her diaper, I realized that she was stinky. Bad stinky. Sick stinky even. And, bad mom that I am, I had left the house with an underprepared diaper bag: one diaper and only 2 wipes. I've watched my sister Ally make a single wipe last a whole diaper change by ingeniously folding it like an origami piece of practical poop art, but not me. Those two wipes barely even made a dent. All the while I'm trying to change this nasty diaper, clean an uncooperative Clare with no supplies, I'm answering questions about this and that. I was totally flustered, felt like an absolute incompetent, and then got an earful from the doc about my inadequate cleaning job ("there's poop in her vagina!" "yes, I see that," I said, "like I mentioned before, I'm out of wipes. Any ideas?"--which finally resulted in a little help. Wet cottonballs work great.)
Routine questions. I'm bad at them, and I was flustered. I did manage to get my own age right, but ethnicity? "Um...generic Anglo-mongrel?" That didn't communicate well. She wrote down "british." And Brent's? "white, I guess," I said. Wrong! "White is race, I asked about ethnicity," said the doc, staring at me like I'd grown another head. "Oh," I said, chastened. "Okay. Texan."
But nothing beats this exchange:
doc: "And Clare is your only child?"
doc: "And she is her father's only child?"
doc: "are you sure?"
me: "uh, yes."
doc: "father's occupation?"
me: (taking a semantic shortcut) "he's a priest."