Search Results for: expat

Dentistry in Delhi

We have appointment cards that list out just the start of what culminated in a summer-long process of right-siding the kids’ dentistry portion of their medical care.

We had one horrible experience with dentistry in Delhi, whereby a tooth was extracted without enough novocaine (I won’t retell the story, for it will make my hair stand on end, and I’ve told it enough times that I should be numb to it already, no pun intended).

Somewhere in late spring of this year, we had some painful nights with our middle little. I received recommendations from a varied group of friends and ended up with a solid decision to see a specific dentist in Delhi.  The office listened to my concerns about our previous horrid experience and prescribed a relaxant medicine for him to take so that he would be a bit loosie-goosie during upcoming treatments and off we went.

The first job was to do a checkup for both littles.  Against my better judgment, I did not insist on x-rays, and instead relied on the Dentist’s suggestion that the tried and true process of using an explorer tool to see if there are any “sticky” points would determine whether they had cavities.

Hooray!  No cavities for the littlest little, and just a couple of easy ones for the middle kid.  We rescheduled for another appointment, dosed with the relaxant on the day of that appointment, cavities drilled and filled and off we went.  Fairly painless appointment, both physically and mentally, and we all went home feeling a bit triumphant!

Simultaneously, we also had the biggest little undergo an exam, whereby 5-6 cavities were found, but with no urgency demonstrated by the Dentist, we decided to save the fillings for when we were stateside.

Fast forward to our first dental experience in Florida.  We walked in, assuming we had just a checkup for the two littles, and one (maybe two) appointments for the Big Kid.

Sucker punch to the gut as New Dentist described all that was wrong with my children’s mouths.  Namely 16 cavities (two of which were going to need root canals) for the Big Kid, 11 (I think I remember that right?) for the middle little and 6 for the littlest.

Sucker punch.

Not only that, but because of some nutrition gaps during the last three years, the littlest had decay on her ADULT teeth that were popping up as she lost a couple of baby teeth.

As I silently cursed the Delhi Dentist under my breath, I made appointment after appointment for my children, realizing that the first 3-4 weeks of their vacation would now be interspersed with uncontrollable slobber, pricks to the insides of their cheeks and “no drinking or eating until 6pm”.

Besides the fact that I felt a failure of a mother, to have not been more diligent with their dental care while in Delhi, I also felt deeply disappointed in the office to begin with.  This office comes as one of the most highly regarded offices in the expat community, and is recommended by most embassy personnel.  There is even a picture of a previous United States Ambassador and the family with said Dentist hanging in the office.

Are their little mouths ok now?  Sure.  They got most of the emergency work taken care of while in Florida and we will get the rest done in a couple of weeks after life settles down in Singapore.

When you are seeking care – whether medical or dental – do your research.
Go with your gut and if that gut tells you that you need more digging around, or another consultation, or x-rays, god forbid, request and demand it.

If you see a doctor and do not feel that your child has gotten the best care, do not pass GO, see someone else.  Get a second opinion.

[I’m closing comments because there’s really nothing to say, except for me to know that I shared the information … and hope that you take it to heart to always put your needs and those of your family, above any nervousness or fear of not knowing as much as a doctor.]

Pahar Ganj

A favorite jaunt for backpackers, locals, expats and people in general is Pahar Ganj.  It is located near the main New Delhi Railway Station and is it ever BUSY!

Pahar Ganj New Delhi India

Pahar Ganj New Delhi India

Pahar Ganj New Delhi India

Pahar Ganj New Delhi India

Pahar Ganj New Delhi India




Disappearing Act

I’ve written in the past about the jobs, titles and responsibilities that are attached to being a mother.  How those things define who you are.  How often it’s no longer about what you used to do for a living, or how far you made it through your education years.  It’s sometimes, pathetically, not even about what your NAME is, as many times you are simply referred to as “Antonio’s mom.”

I knew before we landed in Delhi as a new expat family that my reason for being on this earth was currently defined by three letters – M O M – but had no idea how deep my feelings on the subject ran, UNTIL we landed here and started acclimating.

It almost feels as though you are slowly, slowly … disappearing. 

Disappearing Act Naomi Hattaway

The things you used to be relied on for, are now passed on to someone else to do.  You no longer do even the miniscule of jobs that formerly identified you as a MOM.

Your ID badges that are required for admittance to daily stops (school, club, etc.) all list me as either a “Parent” or a “Spouse” … not simply Naomi.

Before I got married, I wore several hats.  I was a single mom (both financially AND physically) to Terran.  I received little to no child support and while chaotic, I thrived at that.  I worked two, sometimes three jobs.  I relied heavily on family and friends to help with Terran’s social and mental well-being (not to mention babysitting!).  We got through it.  At the end of every day, while I may have been tired, I was satisfied because I had “done it all.”After getting married and quitting my job, I found myself slowly adapting to my new role.  My new title.  I no longer was the breadwinner and was simply a mother.  I was also now a wife, and a daughter-in-law.  With those two new jobs, came new requirements and new daily things to work on, perfect and enjoy.

With this recent move and since becoming an expat chick, I am again adapting to my new role.  This one though, leaves a lot of gaps.  It’s as though I’m disappearing … and rather than let that happen, my instant inclination is to over-commit.  Find things to volunteer for and ways to spend my day.

How do you best balance the lack of required MOM duty (and even WIFE duty) with a desire to find yourself again?

When you’re living in a country where most everything is done FOR you, shouldn’t you seize the opportunity and do things that make you happy?

It seems to be so … seems logical that us expat girls should relish in this time and instead of relinquishing ourselves to disappearing, we should leap for joy and make bucket lists galore.  Explore, learn, teach, expand and better ourselves.

Why then … do alot of the women I talk to still feel over-scheduled, not rested and stressed?  Is it the disappearing act and all that’s associated with it that leaves us still longing for more?

As we sit around the school campus after drop-off, or carry in our yoga mats, or get in line at the local “grocery store” … there is alot of discussion about how THIS time should be golden … yet we feel guilty for doing things that make US happy.

I’m not looking for the answer … as I’m sure that for each of us expat women, there is a different situation involved (some have traveling spouses, some are the breadwinners, some have children, others do not, some are here with no departure date set and others know the minute they will leave).

I’m simply voicing out loud my struggles with feeling sometimes as though I’m simply disappearing.

Two Friends

Several people have written eloquently about friendships.  They are key, important and needed.

I wrote about how to branch out.

Chris is pretty depressed about his friendship status.

Kirsty wrote about lifelong friends.

Tsh shared about imperfect friends and solutions.

Jo wrote about belonging to a tribe.

Maria touched on what her dog taught her about life.

and …

Rachel wrote about the rules of making new friends.

At some moments in your life you only need ONE friend.  The gal that sticks by you during all of life’s ups and downs.  At other points in your life, your spouse or partner becomes your true thing — that person who is always there and rock star steady.

Then there are the moments when you have such an influx of amazing people in your life, that you are full to overflowing.  

(maybe just a bit reminiscent of the feeling after Thanksgiving turkey?)

That’s where I am.

Full to overflowing.