Melody Derrick, MD
Dr. Derrick is a mom of a two-year-old daughter and one-month-old son and a family physician in private practice with Central DuPage Physician Group in Winfield, IL.
What is your favorite parenting tip? Even if you have other obligations like work, remember your most important job is as a mother and wife—that’s top priority!
What has surprised you most about parenting? It’s more fun than I ever thought it would be!
How do you get your kids to eat healthy food? My biggest struggle is vegetables. So when my daughter is hungry, I try to give her the veggies first. I never know when she’ll change her mind on certain veggies. For instance, one day she wouldn’t eat any peas at all, just spit them out every time they touched her lips. The next day I tried again, and she ate an entire bowl of peas! Don’t give up, keep trying and trying and trying!
How do you work exercise into your family’s life? This is so hard, but so important! I love to make it a family event. Then it feels like you’re bonding as a family, not just exercising. We go on bike rides and walks together. I think it’s also important for your kids to see you working out/exercising. You have to model the good habits to them. So, even when it’s something like running that my toddler can’t do with me, I take her in the jogging stroller. It makes it more fun for me anyway!
How do you recharge your own batteries? I love the time I have together with my husband after my children go to bed at night. Just being able to talk to him about our days and what is going on in our lives, frustrations, fears, joys, etc., is so helpful. Also, I love reading, and I try to read some before I go to bed each night. It’s nice to have a quiet activity for myself. There aren’t many other times in my life that are quiet. Also, prayer is a wonderful time to be quiet and focus on what’s really important. Prayer helps remind me that my little problems are nothing in the scheme of life and eternity. I also feel like I’m getting support from God–support outside of the people around me. I feel that God, who has so much more wisdom than I do, is helping me to be a better mom.