Thursday, June 26, 2008

The baby behind the badge

Male resident: "Is there, like, a law that every woman has to have a photo of her baby on the back of her ID badge?"

Me: "Well, we can't put it on the front of the badge, can we??"

So yes, I am one of the many, many physician/mamas who sports a photo of my baby on the back of my ID badge. It covers up the instructions on what to do in case of fire.

I don't want to confess how much time and effort I spent picking out the perfect photo of her to display on the back of my badge. More time than I spend reading New England Journal, that's for sure.

My badge has a tendency to flip around, so that instead of displaying my own photo, name, and job description, I'm walking around the hospital with a photo of a baby on my chest. I'm pretty much the epitome of professionalism.

And of course, I'm always praying that the patient will notice the photo and comment on it, so I have an excuse to talk about her for a minute. A comment that would be great would be something along the lines of: "Your baby girl is beautiful." Unfortunately, comments I've heard include:

"Aw, how old is your son?" (Girls are allowed to wear green, you know.)

"Isn't that ID photo of you a little outdated?" (Ha ha.)

"Wow, you have a kid too? You must be exhausted." (Yep.)

What it all comes down to though is that I love having the photo of her on my ID so that if I'm ever feeling down during the day, I can look at it and feel a little bit better. That or the huge photo album of her that I keep in my white coat pocket at all times.


  1. Now I am left wondering if all those who encounter me at work (always a badge around my neck) are themselves wondering where is her picture of her children. But then again, I probably bring them to enough meetings that everyone knows what they look like in real time!

  2. I hear you!

    I had my first child when I was in my third year of residency. I was so devastated to leave her and have to go back to the grueling depressing world of PICU that I dragged her blankie with me into the call room.

    During the senior skit I was teased saying that I would bring my baby into the patient room if I could.

    Now three kids later- ages 5,4 and 2, that's exactly what I have to do at times.

    The other day I was looking at a patient and the mom remarked about a screaming child outside the room, Wow that kids is really crying!"

    To which I remarked, "Um, that's would be my kid."

    :) Hang in there!

  3. I've thought you were hilarious since the pink stethoscope post, and this confirms it. Love it!

  4. I brought all sorts of magnet pics in of my kids and plastered them on the metal drug box that we carry around with us to cases (I'm an anesthesiologist). I was asked once if this was my shrine!!


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