I love doing 12 and 15 month check ups and seeing all of the “tricks” that a child that age has learned. While we routinely have parents fill out developmental questionnaires prior to their check up, I am still old school and like to ask lots of questions and have them demonstrate things that their children have learned while I am in the exam room and can observe them
I sometimes have to laugh as I ask, “can they wave bye bye?”, or “can they point to their body parts?”, and the poor parents are desperately trying to get their child to demonstrate their newest milestone (trick) but alas, the child is just not interested in “performing” at that minute!! I now how frustrating that is for the parent…but it is just cute to me. We parents sometimes act like our children (and grandchildren) are circus acts…and have to perform on cue. But they are smarter than we are and will decide when they want to show off!!
But there are a few times when I am watching a child whose parents have filled out the developmental questionnaire and it seems all is normal…but when I am in the room I have a few concerns that the child may have not reached a milestone yet…despite what the parents say. Again, I am only in the room with the child for 15-30 minutes, but in that time you do get a lot of both non- verbal and verbal communication. In those cases, if my concerns are not great I make a “note to self” in the chart to re-visit the milestone at the next check up. I also know when parents are concerned that I did not see “the trick” and within the next days or weeks they send me the video of their child waving or saying bye-bye or pointing to their nose!!
Remember, we too do not always “perform’ on command and do not to worry if your child picks their pediatric visit as the time to go on a performance strike. There are other days that “the show will go on” and I get to see the cute trick..often just as I am walking out the door.