Dr. Mommy Dentist

Monday, January 22, 2007

not sure i like where this is heading for numerous reasons

A Proposal to Ban Spanking Sparks Debate

Published: January 21, 2007
LOS ANGELES, Jan. 20 — As a general rule, legislators tend to begin their attack on bills once they have actually been written. But not much proposed legislation involves the backsides of children.
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Rich Pedroncelli/Associated Press
State Assemblywoman Sally J. Lieber of California plans to introduce a bill to ban spanking.
A Democratic assemblywoman from Mountain View says she will submit a bill next week — once it is officially drafted — proposing that California become the first state in the nation to make spanking of children 3 years old and under a misdemeanor. Penalties could include child-rearing classes for offenders to one year in jail.
Just the mention of the bill has become a minor statewide perturbation, sparking denouncements from many Republican lawmakers (the State Senate minority leader, Dick Ackerman, declared, “I’m trying to pick a word other than crazy, let me see, not well thought out.”), heated debates among parents (“A bill should be passed to allow other parents to smack the parents of undisciplined children,” wrote one Internet poster) and some self-reflection on behalf of the governor, whose proclivity for calling others girly men has been replaced of late with dialoguing about his feelings.
In an interview with The San Jose Mercury News, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said that as a child he “got smacked about everything. That was the way Austria worked.”
The governor said that when disciplining his four children, he and his wife, Maria Shriver, declined to spank. “I think any time we try to pass laws that say you’ve got to protect the kids, it’s, in general, always good,” he added.
The bill’s sponsor, Assemblywoman Sally J. Lieber, said that her office had been inundated with calls since word of the proposed bill — which she will probably introduce next week — surfaced. The majority of the calls, she conceded, were against such legislation, which she said she found puzzling, since it covers only the state’s youngest and most vulnerable children.
“I have to question why our society holds so tightly to physical discipline among the very young,” said Ms. Lieber, who does not have children. “We’re very addicted to violence.” She said that the rejection of a bill that would remove the latitude of parents to physically discipline the smallest of children was analogous to protests against the protection of women of domestic abuse.
The speaker of the assembly’s office said it could not comment without reading an actual bill.
Roughly 15 countries have laws banning corporal punishment, and numerous states, including California, forbid spanking in schools. Proponents of such laws argue that spanking — especially for young children, who cannot connect the punishment to the crime — is ineffective at best, and cruel at worst. Opponents of this type of law argue that parents, not the state, should be the arbiter of how children are disciplined at home.
“California has garnered a reputation over the years of supporting these extreme legislative measures,” said Bill Maze, a Republican assemblyman from the Central Valley. “Disciplinary action is up to the parents. This is a wrongheaded measure, and there is zero support among the Republicans I have talked to.”
When it was pointed out to Mr. Maze that the Republican governor had shown some support for the measure, citing his own upbringing, Mr. Maze countered, “The only thing I can say about him is that I guess he needed some discipline, otherwise he wouldn’t have gotten where he is today.”
Ms. Lieber appears undaunted by the criticism of her proposal. “Right now the law is very unclear,” she said, noting that jurors are specifically instructed to take into account that California gives parents discretion on punishment that is not outright abuse. “It makes a lot of sense to me to set a very bright line in this area.”

cookie's finally down for a nap, but of course it's right around the time when i have to jet to the post office so i can mail out my student loan payment and the check for the two outstanding parking tickets that canuck doesn't know about (yet, and i'm sure that conversation will be all shits and giggles). stupid canada post upped the postage to the states, right after i bought a whole book of stamps to the US, and i'm not sure where i can get "filler" stamps. i'm so confused! so i decided to let someone else handle it so that if/when it gets lost i have someone else to pass the blame off onto. i just have to get my arse out the door and into the cold so i can get this done. argh, why do i keep putting this off???

today was my day to volunteer at the co-op playschool, and i loved it! the kids are absolutely a blast to hang out with, and all sorts of different personalities and maturity levels. there was one girl who invited me to her house for hot chocolate and to play with her dog, and another girl who wanted to sit in my lap each circle time, and the little boy who made "purple poopie tea" and was nice enough to share. kids are a rip! but there was also a kid who was very aggressive and kept punching and shoving anyone who got in his way - he even growled at one little boy over a play-do arguement. he was placed in time out three times in the span of two hours. canuck warned me about that kid, and i could see why. cookie was one of the five kids he made cry today.

it was also cookie's turn to bring something for show and tell, and of course, she brought her most beloved and treasured barbies. "pink barbie" and "j-lo barbie" were the guests of honor. she was all excited at first and we even prepped for it before hand, like asking questions about the color of her dresses, who brought them, et cetera. but she had a sudden change of heart when it was time to present at the end of the class, and not because cookie is afraid of public speaking. she was terribly worried that the boys and girls were going to take the barbies home with them! so i took her aside and after a little bit of coaxing and reassuring that the barbies are coming home with us, she reluctantly went up to the front and allowed the kids to ask questions. i gave her a big hug and told her how proud i was of her sharing like a big girl. when i asked her about show and tell again she cried, "never, never, never, it's not for the other boys and girls!".oh-kay, so much for that sharing thing....

pink barbie is seated on the left. she is wearing the orange tutu that usually adorns j-lo barbie (seated on the right), but she usually wears a pink tutu hence the name "pink barbie". j-lo barbie is wearing the rainbow dress and was given that name because personally i think she looks like j-lo, cookie heard me say that and that name just stuck. these are her two favorites and cookie likes to say that they are married (i officiated). btw, the prince is around, he's just not in the picture, both literally and figuratively.

tomorrow canuck and i are going out to dinner after work. nothing spectacular, just a free meal and tobacco cessation course at the novotel toronto. because we can't afford anything better. and because the couple that does CE together stays together. we're just so romantic that way and it works out so well. actually, we're purposely going to take the nitrous oxide certification course together in february even though it will be tight because canuck thinks "well, it would be more fun if we did it together!" (i have pictures from our dentsply endo course in september, and that was a great time there) so i'm going to make this a special occasion and actually dress up to go to work, no sweats! i normally go to work in sweats and change into scrubs when i get there, since it's so bloody cold it's impossible to look stylish and stay warm at the same time. but tomorrow will be different, i will brave the elements so i can not only look presentable and professional at this thing, but i can be nice eye candy for my husband. i'm such a good little doctor mommy ;-)

at the dentsply course in september. all it takes is some free lunch and some extracted teeth to make us happy. i knew there was a reason why i married this guy!

Thursday, January 18, 2007


i'm at work, been here since 8 a.m., got up at 5:45 to get here on time, and my first patient, who we scheduled as emerg this morning when i did a look-see yesterday, doesn't show and has no valid excuse. i'm tired and cranky and i charged him $25 for making me drag my ass out of bed when it was still dark outside, leave my daughter, stand at the bus stop in the bitter cold, and wait here for him like a veal. what, like my time's not important? like i don't have a life that i have to put on hold to fix your teeth, which are jacked because YOU neglected them? and then people get all upset when the office charges for missed appointments. okay, i understand death in the family, illness, childcare issues, whatever. but "i can't come today" is not a valid excuse, especially when the doctor is coming in EARLY to specifically see YOU.

unappreciated. man, i need a cup of coffee and a prozac right now.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

i must have a lot of free time on my hands today...

Your 2005 Song Is

Feel Good Inc by Gorillaz

"Love forever love is free.
Let's turn forever you and me."

In 2005, you were loving life and feeling no pain.

okay, so what's the other 8%???

You Are 88% Democrat

You are a card carrying Democrat, and a pretty far left one at that!
There's no chance anyone would ever mistake you for a Republican.

You Are 4% Republican

If you have anything in common with the Republican party, it's by sheer chance.
You're a staunch liberal, and nothing is going to change that!

the little story of how the MD scared the crap out of the DDS big time

on january 3, i finally got a chance to take advantage of the universal health care system and went for a complete physical. i got it all checked out, blood pressure, cholesterol, thyroid levels, the whole shebang. being a health care professional and constantly being exposed to pathogens known and unknown, i asked the doc to test me for EVERYTHING under the sun. now, i haven't been tested for anything since i was pregnant with cookie over three years ago, and that was when i had just started practicing and hadn't really got my hands wet doing anything and the HIV test was mandatory in new york state (i still reeled while waiting for the results despite the fact that i was "low risk"). but i do have a tattoo and also remember i was exposed to hepatitis C over the summer when i was careless and scratched myself with a flame-shaped (read SHARP) composite finishing bur that had gone subgingival on a Hep C positive patient. it's not like you can do anything when that happens, either - you just wait for your liver enzymes to go up to detectable levels in a few months or test for RNA traces in about 4 - 6 weeks.

usually when the blood work comes back, no news is good news, right? so i nearly shit a brick when his office called and wanted me to come in to "discuss the results."

"oh, don't worry, he always gives hepatitis results in person. it's just policy."

"can't you just give me the, uh, results over the phone? especially if it's negative, just give it to me over the phone, right?"

"we'll be here until 3:30."

oh. my. god.

i raced home early from work, was shaking when i got to office by 2 p.m. and i waited for what seemed like days but was really only a few minutes.

he called me in, sat me down, and pulled out my chart, page by page.

"hey, thanks for coming in, there are some things i want to discuss with you. okay, here's you cholesterol, good, your thyroid levels are good, all your titers are up to date, HIV will be back in a week. now for hepatitis...."

oh god. here it comes...

"you are negative for hepatitis C, and your vaccination for hepatitis B was successful, but you have no protection against Hep A."

"so you mean i am healthy and i don't have hepatitis? i'm okay?"

"what? yes, of course you're great keep up the good work! i just want you to fill this script and come in for the vaccine, that's all."

"you scared the hell outta me, doc, i thought something was wrong! no one ever calls unless something is wrong!"

"oh, no, that's why you looked so worried! no, it's just policy to discuss those results in person, is all, you know with PHIPPA and PIPEDA regulations."

he handed me the script, i breathed a huge sigh of relief, and i went home.

i think i just aged about 10 years...

i really, really like this song...

because it's happy and peppy and the guy is singing about how much he digs his girl. i'm not sure if it's even been released in the US yet.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Happy Birthday Cookie!!!

three years ago today, she heralded her arrival in the typical T.V. cliche that very rarely happens in real life but, of course, happened to me. my water broke in the middle of the night when i laughed while watching seinfeld reruns. Twenty hours and an epidural later, she was born, all 9 pounds 3 ounces of her, and i thankfully managed to pull it off without a C-section. sucks, i had to work all day today, but canuck was home and actually had daddy duty at school today. i wanted to make cookies or cupcakes for the kids in her class, but everyone is so peanut-phobic and allergic nowadays with all that cross-contamination stuff (i think it has something to do with genetically modified peanuts), so the teacher told me to get something store-bought that was labeled "peanut free". turns out NOTHING on the market is guaranteed "peanut free", every bloody thing out there, even the stuff that's been baked on store premises has maybe, possibly come into contact with some sort of nut or a distant relative and is therefore off limits. so i scratched that idea and made little gifty bags filled with bubbles, scratch and sniff stickers, and noise-maker clapper-thingies for the kids (i'll bet the moms will LOVE that!). it's probably better that way, seeing as that i am dentist i probably shouldn't be loading little kids up with fermentable carbohydrates. speaking of which, i caved in and brought home mc donalds happy meals as a treat for the family, as that is cookie's definition of a "special" dinner and it is her birthday so she gets to pick.

it was canuck's turn to volunteer at school today and he said it was "interesting" which in canuck-speak means, "damn, it was hard work i'm glad i did it but i'm also glad it's over." it's my turn on the 22nd and i'm meeting the day with both excitement and trepidation. i'm curious to see how cookie is at school, how she behaves and how she treats her teachers and the other kids. canuck says she's pretty good but definitely needs to learn to listen when given instruction. i think it may be a funciton of her age, she only turned three, but at the same time we realized that our kid needs a little more structure and some sort of a schedule if she's going to turn into a functional member of our society (now that's an oxymoron!). i think a set bedtime and not allowing her to sleep in our bed might be a good start, but it's so hard to stick to something like that, especially when one or both of us works evenings. i don't even know where to start....

blowing out the candles!

my big girl's three years old today!!!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Monday, January 8, 2007, Cookie goes to school!

My little baby/devil/angel/buddy has officially started formal education. we enrolled her in the neighborhood community center's co-operative pre-school program. on monday, wednesday, and friday she'll be out of my hair for about 2 hours in the morning, where shell learn to play with others, make arts and crafts, and hopefully listen to grownups( gee, i wonder how that will pan out...). here are some pictures of her first day, all dressed up and on the stairs!

why is it so impossible to get this kid to pose normally for the camera???
this shot is better, at least she's not making a goofy goober face ;-)

apparently, she was pretty good at letting go of me and entering the classroom, no drama, tears, or anything. that actually felt pretty good, i didn't have that surge of emotions some moms feel when dropping their kids off for the first day. i didn't feel abandoned, torn away from my child, and i didn't fret while she was away because i knew she was having a good time (i also got some crap done around the house, too!) she'll always be my baby, but i love to watch her grow up, say new intelligent and hillarious things, and see how she interacts with other people. i wonder what kind of person she's going to grow up to be. will she be a nice kid (i hope so!)? easy-going or extremely sensitive (like her mommy!). what will she like to study in school? what will her friends be like? what five million things will she want to be when she grows up? i can't wait to find all these things out, and as limited as her time in school is right now, we're on the road to discovery! so i guess that's why i feel the way i feel about the whole deal. it's great, my kid's growing up!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Christmas pictures!!!

yay, finally got a chance to unload the pics from my camera onto my computer, and now onto the blog.! i forgot how easy it is, i'm kicking myself for not doing it sooner...

cookie surveys the tree (she approves).

here's cookie in her nightgown on christmas eve - good luck trying to get her dressed in the morning whenever she wears that to bed, she absolutely refuses to take it off. sometimes we just have to put it on top of whatever she's wearing to keep the peace.

nana, cookie, and zelda on the stairs. it was a surprisingly very difficult picture to take and this was the best shot i could get of everyone (toddler at christmas plus skittish dog plus cranky mommy that still has a ton of cooking to do).

opening the first of a zillion barbies.
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zelda, the wonder dog.