Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I, Comforter -- by Khanh-Van Le-Bucklin, M.D., M.O.M.

Last week, I had the unfortunate circumstance of having to take Hope, one of my twin daughters, to the hospital for surgery. She had a history of multiple ear infections, and I finally agreed to let the doctors place tubes in her ears. The procedure involves the insertion of tiny tubes through the ear drums to help equalize ear pressure and drain fluid from the middle ear.

The surgery took less than an hour, but it seemed like days before they called my name to meet her in the recovery unit. As I walked into the room, Hope was still emerging from anesthesia. Her eyes were closed, but she was writhing around and crying hysterically in the arms of a recovery room nurse. They had tried to give her a dose of a sedative and pain medication to calm her down. But no luck. She was mad!

I took her into my arms, and I could feel the pain and anger in her tense body. Though her eyes were still closed and she was in a half-awake state, my maternal instincts sensed that she acknowledged my presence. I held her close to my body and whispered gently in her ear, "Hope, Mommy's here. You're OK. Mommy's here now."

Within minutes she was relaxed and asleep in my arms. The sudden silence was obvious, and I got an approving smile from the bedside nurse.

With Hope sleeping peacefully in my arms, I watched as other children, half-asleep and crying, reunited with their parents in the recovery unit after surgery. The ability of their parents to comfort them was natural and effortless-- nothing short of amazing.

As parents, we were born to comfort our children. Our ability to bring peace to their hearts is powerful and healing. Today, it's surgery. Tomorrow, it may be a scraped knee, a failed test, or an unrequited first crush. As long as we are there for our children, the emotional pain will pass. Peace will return to their hearts. They will rest comfortably at night knowing Mommy (or Daddy) loves them. And when they sleep soundly, so do we!

Sweet dreams to parents and their children everywhere!

(Post submitted by Khanh-Van Le-Bucklin, M.D., M.O.M., pediatrician, author of "Twins 101," founder of, and the proud parent of a singleton and identical twin girls)

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