Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Common Courtesy

Yesterday I had to take my daughter to two doctors at the children's hospital. The first appointment was actually only to see the nurse and have patches of various food items put on her back to test for allergic reactions.

We have never done this before and so everything is new and confusing. In general I always slightly dread going to doctors here because 1. Everything is in another language and 2. People are just different in various cultures.

I was a little taken aback when as a nurse sped into the office I was waiting by and I tried to address her she completely ignored me and closed the door in my face. All I wanted to know was if I was waiting by the correct door. . .

When we finally did get into the office we were cared for by the same unfriendly nurse. Not once did she address my little daughter. Not once did she make any form of friendly conversation with us. She did her job and that was it.

I was again reminded that I do not live in my home country.

As I recounted this to my husband he reminded me how little people make here in Latvia. He said if I wanted politeness and friendly conversation than I could have paid for our visit. There are two ways of doing things here- the planned way- where you wait and all medical services are for free for kids. Or where you pay and schedule more to your convenience.

I was saddened by this conversation. I know it is true that these people make very little- but in my opinion as humans and fellow walkers of the earth we ought to be kind to one another and at least show common courtesy- especially at a children's hospital-where the child is afraid already.

A tear slipped down my cheek as I told my husband with emotion in my voice "Let's raise our children to be kind to others, and show courtesy no matter how much they are paid. "

Because in my humble opinion a good attitude should not have to be so shallow that it can be bought with money.

Note: Not all medical workers are like this. We have one of the most wonderful family doctors around for our kids. She goes above and beyond herself, even outside work hours. 


  1. I have spent a lot of past years with doctors and let me say - Yes, there are some doctors and nurses who are not kind, not polite and so. I have deal with adult doctor who said to me at my 17 y.o. that I shouldn't act like sick cow. Just because I have problems with my heart :)
    In the same time you can meet wonderful doctors even if you not pay for meeting. My family doctor is the kindest doctor I have ever met. I wish you to meet really good doctors, and don't make decisions that you can get good attention form medical personal only if you pay for them, not government :)
    By the way, I think I saw you Yesterday. Did you were at Lido in evening?

    1. You are right, we too have a wonderful family doctor for the kids. But I want people to think about how they treat one another. Kindness is the key :) We were there- funny- small world. How did you find my blog ?

    2. I'm thankful you have a kind family doctor. We have met some rude doctors over the years in America, too. When Paul was young he ate a glass Christmas tree ornament, but the pediatrician made fun of me. He said, "You first time moms worry about every little thing!" I was shocked and felt intimidated after that to call for any reason. It's good to teach our children to be kind and thoughtful no matter the circumstances. Lord, touch that unkind nurse with Your love....