Today’s Meet a Mom is the Pediatrician behind the brand new Wishing Well Children’s Clinic, Dr. Rosabelle McConkey. Dr. Rosie is a local mama of 3 and has officially achieved her dream of opening her own practice right here in Katy! She started accepting patients this month and as as we learn more about Dr. Rosie, we truly believe any mama would be lucky to have her as their kid’s pediatrician. In the 4th grade was when Dr. Rosie decided she wanted to become a pediatrician. Her 4th grade teacher even gifted her a set of books when she graduated high school, and told her they were for her clinic that she knew she would have one day. And now, on the walls of her new clinic there’s a woodland or mythical character from those books! Dr. Rosie believes that being a mom herself allows her to relate to the parents at every stage of childhood, and she can balance the best evidence with the practicality of her advice. We just loved Dr. Rosie’s interview and think you will, too, so keep reading to learn more!
Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in the Katy area?
I was born in Michigan, but the furthest reach of my memories have all been from Houston. I am completely new to Katy with the launch of my pediatric clinic. While I live in Cypress, my family and I consider Katy our second home since building the clinic this year.
How many kiddos do you have and how old are they?
3 kiddos: Thomas is 11, Liam is 7 and Ellia is 5
What’s your favorite thing about raising a family in Katy?
Katy is a huge suburb and continues to expand, but you still get a small community feel. The people are just friendly. You can start a conversation with just about anyone you meet around here.
Least favorite mom job? (i.e. packing lunches, dishes, bath time, etc.)
The morning shuffle—trying to get all 3 kids out of the door for school on time, dressed decently and fed, while breaking up any fights.
Best mom hack that makes life easier?
Kids go to bed with clothes they are wearing for the next day. We keep a bin for each kid’s clean socks in a cabinet by the garage door and shoes. These help with the aforementioned dreaded morning shuffle.
What are your favorite local things to do in Katy? (with kiddos or just for mom!)
My kids enjoy going to Katy Asian Town and trying all the restaurants and dessert places. Costco always seems like an outing in itself. The kids always have a good time at Main Event & GlowZone. In Cypress, our mall is outdoors…so we appreciate Katy Mills for an air-conditioned shopping experience during those hot summer days.
We’re big on self-care for moms, as hard as it is to find the time, what’s something you do just for yourself?
For something I do regularly, I try to have just one show I follow at a time. It gives me a chance to decompress and not think of any of life’s demands for at least 30 minutes a day. I’m currently watching Workin’ Moms on Netflix but can’t wait until This Is Us returns in the Fall.
For something I do occasionally and find refreshing is an all girls’ outing with my friends. I feel whole again when out enjoying some simple company and good uninterrupted conversations
One thing people would be surprised to know about you…
My middle name is an acronym. VIA stands for Vietnam, India and America. It describes my parents’ journey from Vietnam as refugees from the war. They were rescued by an Indian ship and sent to Madras where they married and lived for a year with other refugees. I was made in India but was born in America when my family made their way here.
When did you decide you wanted to be a pediatrician? And, what inspired that decision?
I wanted to be a pediatrician when I was in the 4th grade. It’s not the typical inspiration story. I just remember I did not enjoy going to the doctor and thought of ways I could make it better. The thought stuck with me and I would draw out floor plans for my future clinic. Can’t say that my current floor plan mirrors my young self’s plan with a basketball court.
Where did you go to school and what has your career looked like prior to starting your own practice?
I attended the University of St. Thomas here in Houston for undergrad. I happily stayed in town to attend UTHealth for both medical school and pediatric residency training. I got married the same week I graduated medical school and got pregnant during my first year as an intern. That childhood dream of having my own clinic quickly dissolved as I just wanted a stable employed position to balance all the personal changes. I joined a large private practice in Cypress right after residency and enjoyed practicing for almost 9 years before deciding to go on my own.
Tell us about Wishing Well Children’s Clinic! When did you decide to open your own practice?
As my kids got older and more self-sufficient, I started reexamining my career goals. I wanted to have that clinic that I could build from the bottom up. My husband is super supportive of my goals, so I decided to take the plunge. As I was thinking of the clinic’s theme, it dawned on me that I still have the set of children’s books my 4th grade teacher had read to the class every day. She had kept them and gifted them to me when I was graduating high school. She said they were for my clinic she knew I’d have one day. These were perfect for the clinic. Each room features a woodland or mythical character from the book. There was always a life lesson taught at the end of the book that is still relevant to the kids today. The author of these books even came to the open house and signed my wall!
What are your hopes and future plans for Wishing Well Children’s Clinic?
I hope my practice will be filled with patients and families that I can grow old with. I love being a witness to all the milestones that a child achieves. I have built the clinic to accommodate growth. Several years down the line, I would love to add a couple more pediatricians to the mix.
What do you hope sets you apart from other pediatric offices?
I want Wishing Well to be a place of comfort even if sometimes you’re here from a place of pain or illness. My vision is to have a small-town doctor vibe in a modern setting. I am working on incorporating technology to make myself accessible to patients in times of need. Because I am not sharing patients across several different doctors or providers within the same clinic, I will get to know every aspect of my patients’ care.
How does being a mom yourself impact your practice and how you care for your patients?
Being a mom completely influences every aspect of my practice of pediatrics. I empathize and relate with parents through the different stages of raising a child. I can give advice that aligns with the best evidence while also balancing the practicality of it. I also practice the way I would want my own family to be treated in a medical setting.
How do you balance work, being a mom, and a wife?
It is definitely a juggling act. Through the years, I have learned that I cannot and should not try to do it all. I try to be intentional in what I choose for my family and myself in terms of commitment. Choose what we love with our time. Do what only I can do best and allow others to help with the rest. When there are days that are more challenging than others, my husband and I always say to each other, “This is the life we chose.” It gives a little comic relief to the crazy things that come up with the kids, work or home life.
Best advice for moms who experience the inevitable and dreaded MOM GUILT?
Some days are all about survival—we all get it. This pediatrician mom can tell you she has formula-fed, used bribery of all sorts, given more screen time than recommended, fed the kids chicken nuggets and fries, gotten home so late from work only in time for the bedtime routine, and taken trips without the kids or husband. Keeping kids safe and loved are of the utmost importance, all else are details.
Who has most influenced you to be the mom you are today?
My mom and dad have the biggest impact of how I parent today. They pushed education as the foundation of everything good in life. They modeled hard work and integrity. It was those things that I remember most from my childhood and what I want to instill in my kids.
To learn more about Wishing Well Children’s Clinic and Dr. Rosie, check out the links below!