This is true for both Mia and I in this past week.
For Mia, we had a small token of reassurance last week at a paediatric appointment. It was a follow up appointment after we first met with the paediatrician in September last year, after Mia had a gastroscopy. She has always been small for her age, right from birth, and although that in itself is no reason for alarm, her size has always been small enough to warrant some close observance. When she started on solid food at 5 months of age, her weight gain actually started to slip, and although it was only a temporary dip and she quickly went back to maintaining a consistent line along the curve of the weight graph (those very complex looking graph charts they have in the back of each child's blue health book in Australia), she was never quite able to gain enough weight to make up for that one slip. Some tests were done and they found a "marker" for possible coeliac disease, which is why the gastroscopy was undertaken, but luckily for us it came back negative for coeliac disease. However we were recommended to come back for appointments every now and again to check on her physical development.
She's always been small, and it's likely she always will be. She's a happy, bright, clever, beautiful and healthy little girl, and as long as that's the case, her weight isn't an issue in both our eyes and those of the paediatrician. I know this, however I still can't help but feel a tiny pang of something, maybe sadness, or anger, or guilt, whenever a passerby asks how old she is and then when I tell them, comments that "she's so tiny!". Or when a doctor, paediatrician, nurse or other medical professional loosely uses the term "failure to thrive" when talking about her development up until this point (which, when the patient in question is running back and forth around the consultation room, all the while munching on a sandwich, is clearly a ridiculous statement to make).
Last week though, a teeny tiny breakthrough. I was helping a nurse take Mia's measurements while we waited for our appointment with the paediatrician, and after it was done and we settled back in the waiting room, I couldn't help but check the weight graph in Mia's blue book to see how she was tracking (I know it's not good to become obsessed by numbers or stats or milestones, and I'm really not, but the curiosity was just too much on this occasion!). This time, not only was her weight tracking along the same consistent curve, but it had jumped up too! She's now a little closer to that next percentile! Now I know some people might be reading this and thinking it might not be something to get majorly excited about, and I really do understand that there are far worse health issues that other people have to deal with. But after nearly two years of doubting ourselves off and on, wondering whether we should be more worried, whether there is some unknown reason why Mia is so small, whether we're doing something wrong.......this feels like a little "thumbs up", a little "you're doing ok after all!"
And why is this week all about "onwards and upwards" for me? Well I've been feeling pretty unmotivated and uninspired since the beginning of the year really, and I still don't quite feel the same energy and contentment that I usually have. But this week I've decided to try a new direction. I'm trying not to whine and moan, not to despair and take pity on myself, and not to think about my massive workload and numerous commitments over the coming year. Instead I'm trying to just deal with the here and now, taking each day as it comes and setting realistic daily goals, and focussing on the positive. Deep down, I still feel like I'm being overloaded and taken advantage of at work, but with my job coming up for permanency in a few months' time I can't really afford to voice my real opinions too much. It's sad, but that's the nature and politics of an office environment I guess, you have to play the game whether you want to or not.
At the end of the day though, I'm starting to realise again that I AM good at what I do, I AM a valuable team player, and I'd prefer to be the person that everyone wants to work with, not the one they complain about behind my back! I wonder if I'll still feel the same by the end of this week?