Eps 250: How to Navigate Parenting In the Shadow Of the Coronavirus with Dr. Jennifer Variste


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Dr. Jennifer Variste’s desire for pediatrics began at a very young age because her visits to her pediatrician were usually positive experiences. Later she fulfilled her dream and obtained her medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. She went on to complete a pediatric residency at UT Houston Health Science Center. 

After residency, she returned to practice in her hometown of College Station, Texas. Dr. Variste is grateful for the five years she spent treating families there and for the relationships and connections she made. She now practices in Spring, Texas at Family First Pediatrics. 

As a board-certified pediatrician her passion is to empower moms and dads to raise their kids to lead happy, healthy lives full of precious memories and discovery. She desires to create the same positive experiences for her patients that she had with her pediatrician as a young child.

Takeaways from the show:


  • COVID and schooling

  • How the pandemic is showing up in doctors’ offices

  • The experience of covid in children is not the same as some of the complications older adults may suffer

  • The coronavirus family causes symptoms of the common cold in kids all the time

  • Anxieties that are showing up for parents during the pandemic

  • Some kids may learn better in a school environment than online

  • Speaking to your pediatrician about your child going back to school

  • How parents can ensure their kids stay safe when going back to school

  • Tips for parents of older kids to ensure they are being safe

  • Acknowledging how annoying it is that things are so uncertain

  • Focusing on the things that we can do during the pandemic

  • Well visits are important as ever

  • Parents are going through a very difficult time, but you’re doing a great job

  • Look to your pediatrician as an ally to your family

See you next week! 🙂

Find Jennifer:

Instagram | FaceBook 

Resources Mentioned:

American Academy of Pediatrics & HealthyChildren.org (pandemic related information)

What does joyful courage mean to you? 

Right now I feel like parents have to maintain that. It’s critical now more than ever. As a parent, you are the gatekeeper in your home. I think you had alluded to this earlier Casey when you mentioned the 15-minute NPR and listening to all of the covid updates, you want to make sure that you maintain a positive environment and a positive atmosphere in your family. If we have to turn off the news for a while and do something positive with our family, that’s fine. If we have to not watch the news and maybe just get updates from the local county website because those are more practical and relevant to us, that’s fine too. You have the courage to stand up for your family and make decisions that maintain that positive environment and atmosphere for your family. 



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