Wendy Schofer, MD
A big part of the fun of being a pediatrician is watching families grow: new family members, new skills, becoming taller than their doctor! I’ve also watched kids grow on the scale and the growth curves. At first it was a concern, needing to define and identify obesity so that we can treat it. And then, it became clear: as physicians we weren’t making any difference. The challenges of increasing weight gain were not in the medical office - they were rooted in the community.
At the beginning of every visit, I would plot the child’s growth on a chart, and look at the curve. Parents would wait with baited breath…. What’s the news? I could hear it in their anxious voices, “What kind of parent am I being?”
The "BMI chat" brings up so many things for parents: their identity and sense of personal value are tied up in a number. A number which makes a mother fear that her children are destined for health problems, and fear that she is failing as a mother.
As parents, we are living in fear. Fear of being bad parents, fears that our own weight issues mean that we can’t teach our kids how to grow up healthy, fear of the trap of emotional eating, fear of our kids being labeled as obese, and fear of “the BMI talk,” fears that everything we are doing isn’t worth our time and effort because the whole country is stressed and putting on weight too. Why would we be different?
Because you are.
We have a secret.
It’s not population health.
It’s not a medical diagnosis.
It’s not a magic pill.
It’s the power of one parent, leading one family.
There is nothing stronger than a parent who is concerned for their child. When the mom says, “there’s something just not right with my child,” I’m still searching. That’s Mom-DAR.
Coaching helped me transform my health, my family, my career, my life.
Because I changed.
Let’s work together. Because you are not broken, you are not alone, and you are undoubtedly THE BEST person to take your own experience and become the role model for your children’s healthy lifestyle. Every day is a new beginning, each step is the first step on a new path.
You’ve got this. And I’ve got you.