Sonia Ng, MD
Dr. Ng is a mom of seven-year-old and one-year-old sons and a pediatrician and expert in sedation at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Pediatric Care at Princeton Health Care System in Princeton, NJ.
How many children do you have? I have seven-year-old and one-year-old sons. The seven-year-old had his first spelling test today, and I can’t wait to talk to him.
What’s your specialty? Pediatrics and sedation (Parents always ask me if they can have meds for home because we tend to find that unconscious children are better behaved.)
What’s your favorite parenting tip? Try not to feel guilty and don’t feel bad if things you have tried do not work. Not every child is the same. Parenting is not always clear cut. There wouldn’t be so many blog sites and parenting websites if every kid responded in a predictable fashion. We get asked a lot by parents if there was anything that they could have done to prevent the kids from getting sick. The answer is almost always no. Parents still feel guilty if we try to reassure them.
What has surprised you most about parenting? How hard it was to go back to work. I’ve told my boss that I would love to be an at home mommy. Separation makes the heart grow fonder.
How do you get your kids to eat healthy food? I’m honestly still working on this one. You have to have a united front. My husband is a big junk food guy.
How do you work exercise into your family’s life? I put a stepper on to help with raising money for a random cause and found that I take 10,000 steps at work in one day, not counting any that I do out of the hospital. I also carry the baby around and he is 25 percent of my body weight. I take the stairs sometimes. I also put a baby seat on my bike and taught my seven-year-old son to bike this year. We ride around the neighborhood and the baby falls asleep (gets his nap in) and we get our exercise and fresh air. I’ve killed two birds with one stone.
How do you recharge your batteries? You may hear this from other doctors, but medicine is very seductive because each improved patient is satisfying. Every case that you make a difference in gives you a sense of elation. So if I’m stressed at home, but I made a difference in someone’s life, I have my stress relief. Alternatively, if I have a bad day at work, where I’m unsure of the diagnosis, or a child hasn’t gotten better as quickly as I would have liked, I go home and can find comfort. I’m so happy to see them and interact with them. It’s amazing how grateful I feel to have my own kids smiling and laughing with me. It’s also hard to be stressed over undone laundry or unwashed dishes when you know why someone else’s kids are in the hospital. I realized that I have it relatively easy compared to other people. I also knit: It’s cheaper than therapy or massages.