Popcorn has the hini virus....Err excuse me H1N1...Am I the only soul who sees H1N1 on the news and giggles behind my hand like a 6th grade boy? If I was, I'm not now. Thanks to me, you will now see the word hini (as in hiney) every time the news reports on H1N1. You're welcome.
Well, Bookworm had to ride the bus by herself yesterday. Now, typically, if I'm home, I drive them to school. The bus arrives at 7:23. If I drive them, we can leave as late as 8:10 and still not be tardy. Of course, we leave at 7:50 so they can play on the playground for 20 minutes before school starts...but the reality is, if I'm home they can piddle a lot longer. And I can let them sleep a lot later.
Yesterday I woke them up at 6:30 to get them on the bus on time, since I leave for work at 6:45 (obviously their dad puts them on...) I immediately said "Popcorn has the flu." Studmuffin said, "How can you possibly know that by looking at her for half a second?"
I can know because I'm a nurse. I have excellent assessment skills. I can diagnose lung disease by looking at the lady in the checkout line in front of me's fingers...I can diagnose heart failure by looking at your ankles and hearing your rattly breathing...I can diagnose gangrene and VRE with my nose (hate doing that by the way), and strep by the smell of a person's breath and the rash on their torso...You bet your sweet bippy I can diagnose flu with one glance at my 7 year old's cherry red face peeping out of the covers!!!!
(Disclaimer: As a nurse, I am not technically qualified to diagnose anything. I am only qualified to give the doctor every single symptom of an illness that I encounter, then either ask gently "do you think we need to draw a BNP to see if they're in heart failure?" or hold their hand and delicately lead them to the diagnosis that I think is right...But, again, I'm in no way qualified to officially diagnose the patient. Even though I do. I'm just a rebel that way.)
Okay. Maybe I knew flu was running rampant. Maybe I knew that 99 kids were gone out of our middle school the day before with flu. Maybe our piano teacher's kids had flu. Maybe she had complained of a headache and sore throat the night before when she was going to bed...But still...How DARE he question how I knew she had that flu. I took her temperature: 101.9, thank you very much...I immediately put her on quarantine. TV in her room, meals in her room, she only uses the hall bath...Studmuffin still questioned my certainty it was flu...
Just to prove him wrong I took her to the doctor to get her nose swabbed. When the doctor came in the room wearing a mask, I felt a burst of triumph. I WAS RIGHT! So, PFPFPFPFP to you Studmuffin! And then, I was bummed because now I have to scramble to keep the rest of this family healthy, with the assistance of $260 worth of tamiflu to help Popcorn recover and for prevention for the rest of us. That is with prescription insurance people! I confess, my cheap side considered skipping the med, but then I did the math in my head, and I was already having to miss at least 2 days of work, and if I miss more next week, then I will be out way more than $260....
So, back to my original drama story. Bookworm DID NOT want to ride the bus alone. However, since she had already gotten up early and was ready except for finishing breakfast at ten til 7, then she had plenty of time to eat, brush teeth, and catch the bus. She immediately went into meltdown mode. If you've never seen Bookworm's meltdown mode, it is a sight to behold. She has had this shrieking cry since birth, that is louder than any child I have ever heard. It is ear splitting. Studmuffin used to flee the room when she busted out with it because, "it hurt his eardrums." We won't even start on the bitterness I had rolling off of me with that shrieking infant on my shoulder and my husband running out the door, and SHUTTING IT behind him...I'm totally over that! No residual bitterness whatsoever...
So, our dialogue (shrieking on Bookworm's part) went as follows:
B: I don't want to ride the bus alone. I'm not comfortable with it! (at this point her voice is wobbly, and she's trying to pump out some tears.)
Me: Sorry, babe, but it's better for you to ride the bus than be in an enclosed car with your sister. Flu is airborne for 6 feet, and I don't have a mask for her..
B: But Tea won't sit by me after Caleb gets on the bus. She moves because a stinky boy is going to sit next to her, then Caleb has one of his friends sit next to us, and he makes us scoot all the way over until I'm smashed up against the window, and I'M UNCOMFORTABLE WITH THAT!!! (obviously we've reached wailing at this point.)
Me: Well, ask Tea to stay next to you so you don't have to sit by a boy.
B: SHE WON'T! SHE WON'T STAY NEXT TO ME BECAUSE SHE DOESN'T WANT TO SIT BY CALEB!!! WAAA!!WAAA!! WAA! (At this point you have to use your brain to interpret what's being said between the wails. It's a lovely experience, Gentle Reader. I'm tellin' ya.)
Me: Then Tea's not really your friend if she won't sit next to you, is she? Have you ever actually asked her? (she shakes her head no) Ask her to sit next to you, or sit right behind the bus driver so he can see if some one's picking on you, or better yet tell the bus driver Caleb is picking on you. But you're still riding the bus today.
B: NO! I'M NOT RIDING THE BUS. I'M NOT GOING TO. I DON'T WANT TO.
At this point, her father enters: What? Someone is tormenting you on the bus? I'll put a stop to that. No boy is going to make you uncomfortable on the bus...I'm climbing on that bus right behind you today, and I'm talking to the bus driver and if that doesn't work, I'll talk to the kid myself! (don't mess with Daddy's little girls)
B: NONONONO! FORGET IT! YOU DON'T NEED TO GET ON THE BUS BECAUSE I DON'T WANT TO RIDE IT! I'M NOT COMFORTABLE! YOU CAN JUST DRIVE ME TO SCHOOL!
S: No. You can ride the bus. You have a voice. Tell Caleb to leave you alone. Refuse to scoot over. Don't just sit and pout because someone told you to do something you don't like. Better yet, sit right behind the driver, and nobody will dare pick on you.
B: NO! I'M NOT RIDING THE BUS! I DON'T FEEL COMFORTABLE ON IT BY MYSELF! (do you see a pattern developing here?)
Me: When does Caleb get on the bus? (I'm calm. I'm rational. I'm not going to let her suck me into a shrieking match...)
B: At the park
Me: Isn't that the last stop? That means he's only on the bus with you for maybe 5 minutes! (ha! I feel triumph coming my way...)
B: NO! WE MAKE LOTS OF STOPS AFTER THAT AND PICK UP LOTS OF KIDS! I HAVE TO SIT BY HIM FOREVER! I'M NOT RIDING THE BUS!
Me: Okay, you've wasted all of your breakfast time throwing a fit. (practicing breathing exercises, counting in my head so I don't take the rest of her waffles and shove it in her mouth to shut her up...just being real with my fantasies here.) Go brush your teeth. You have 5 minutes before the bus is here, and it will not stop if you're not out there.
B: BUT I'M NOT RIDING THE BUS! YOU ARE GOING TO DRIVE ME! (Oh, the deafening wails. It's all I can do not to tape her mouth shut and commence to warming her backside at this point. With a hairbrush. Or a wooden spoon...Or maybe I will start throwing things. I'm not sure. Just getting extremely angry at this point...)
Me: Get. in. the. bathroom. Brush. Your. Teeth.
*she commences to go into the bathroom, get a new toothbrush since hers had been in the holder next to her sister's and we were trying to control germs, be unable to open it and fling it against the wall, plop down on her bottom and sob and sob and sob....Actually, she's shrieking, because her dad & I may not hear a mere sob all the way in the kitchen, so she is shrieking at the top of her lungs so we will realize the torment she is suffering, and we will suffer with her, or totally cave and let her have her way...
Me: Brush your teeth. The bus will be here any minute. (blood pressure rising. Tension headache coming on. Trying not to lose my temper with my child.)
B: I DON'T WANT TO RIDE THE BUS!
S: You are riding that bus if I have to drag you by your hair to the street! Brush your teeth! I will talk to the driver! (Nobody wants daddy to lose his temper. It ain't pretty, and it gives an observer a glimpse of where Bookworm got her temper. That's not to say that I don't have one too. Their tempers are just more glorious to behold...)
She brushes her teeth while I stand over her breathing fire down her neck. I was satisfied with myself for not totally losing it with her. I hate sending her to school thinking I'm angry with her...Even when I am.
Studmuffin hustled her to the street to meet the bus. He followed her onto the bus...
S: Hey, there's this kid Caleb...
Bus driver immediately gets an oh great, I know what's coming expression: What is it this time?
S: Well, apparently there's been a little tormenting going on with him and my girls. Could you just keep an eye out for it?
Bus driver: Yeah, we have problems with him. He's at the last stop, but I'll keep an eye out for it!
Did you catch that? He's the last stop....When Studmuffin told me that I nearly blew the top of my head off.
Fast forward to 3pm.....
Me: Hi! How was your day? Did you smile pretty for your picture? (Yes, my child went to school with red eyes, cheeks and nose from the wild eyed fit she threw over the bus for picture day!! Hoo-ray.)
Me: How was the bus?
B: Fine, but the bus driver played a sad song, and I had to cry a little bit.
Me: What was the song about?
B: I don't know. I just cried about it.
Me: Did Tea sit next to you?
B: Yes. I asked her to stay next to me, and she did.
Me: Wow. It's amazing what people will do when you ASK THEM.... Is there anything you need to say about this morning?
B: What do you mean?
Me: Did you lie to me about when Caleb gets on the bus?
B: Mom, I can't remember what all I said this morning...
Me: Well, lucky for you, I DO remember..."lots of kids get on after Caleb...We have to make lots of stops...."
B: Oh. I forgot when he got on.
Me: No you didn't. You lied to me to try to get me to take you to school.
B: I just can't remember...
Me, getting angry again, now: Just answer me this: Did you lie to your dad & I this morning?
B: Yes. But I felt nervous about riding the bus alone!
Me: That doesn't make it ok to lie. We all have to do new things sometimes. We all have to do things we're uncomfortable with sometimes. If Caleb bothers you any more tell the driver. If that doesn't work, we'll talk to the driver again, and call the school. Okay? And if you lie to me again, I will put vinegar on your tongue and we all know that always makes you barf...So do not lie to me!
Oh, Gentle Reader...Her drama exhausts me. It has always exhausted me. She blows little things into giant issues. Often in hopes that we will step in and not make her deal with the little thing...
Well. That's all the drama I have to offer you for today. But, now you can hopefully understand why I call her DQ (for Drama Queen.) Aren't you glad that you had an extra 20 minutes to read this really long post?
HEY! How about we lighten things up a bit? I have a snippet of Popcorn's September journal to share with you...
Explain ways you can exerise. You can do jumping jacks. You can run in place. Why it is important Is because if you get to much fat on your gluodis maxoument you could get diybeteedes if you arent carefull. You can goag it is veary good to do that.
Translations: gluodis maxoument is your gluteus maximus.
diybeteedes is diabetes
goag is jog.
Why does my child know about a gluteus maximus you ask? Well, I have tons of workout videos, and lots of them refer to your gluteus maximus. She has always loved that word. So there you have it, Gentle Reader. You better exercise so you don't get too much fat on your gluteus maximus and then get diabetes. Thank you, Popcorn, for the informative health lesson today!