Oh, a day in the life of the soapy water family, and yes, that title was a shout out to you, Tiger, if you get it, yo.
Normal morning. Actually, exceptional morning. The Kid woke up in a great, helpful mood. Dressed himself, took only a few seconds to decide between oatmeal and cold cereal. Ate oatmeal in reasonable amount of time. Got him to school, drove to work. Got coffee, water-coolered about Katrina, Iraq and bird flu--all the usual apocalyptic-news talk--and then the phone rings. The Kid's had an accident at school. Huh?
What kind of accident, I say? He's run, full speed, into a doornob, nasty goose-egg, he's a trooper, I'm told. Huh? He ran into a what? A doornob? Who does that? Who does that on accident?
Do you need me to come get him? Yup, school policy regarding head injuries.
Oh Jesus, head injury. It hadn't even occurred to me that he would be actually injured by that. I've seen this kid do much worse than run into a doornob. Is he okay? The nurse pulled out her inner ER and told me, His pupils are equal and reactive, and he isn't vomiting.
Alrighty then. See you in 10 minutes.
As I'm driving home, I get a phone call on my cell. Hello?
"Hi this is Mrs. Social Worker from The School, calling to set up a meeting with you to discuss The Kid and his adjustment to kindergarten."
Opportune, I think. I say, Oh, I'll be there in about two minutes, if you'd like, we could meet if The Kid's head injury isn't too bad; his pupils ARE equal and reactive, after all.
Mrs. Social Worker is confused. She thinks I may be insane, scribbling nervously onto her case notes, "the mother exhibits paranoid behavior and seems to be talking on the cell phone while driving, yes, clearly insane".
"What are you talking about?" I think were her exact words.
--Insert conversation that clears up this confusion, she erases case notes about my insanity (hopefully) and agrees to meet me in the clinic in two minutes--
When I arrive at the school, The Kid is supine, holding large ziplock filled with ice to his head injury, playing it up to the fullest, clearly enjoying the one-on-one time with Mrs. Kindergarten Paraprofessional, and I'm reminded of Draco Malfoy playing up his Hippogriff injury. I instantly know The Kid is alright. Mrs. Social Worker is also in the clinic. She is truly a wonderful lady, I can tell.
Have I mentioned that a large number of my closest and best friends have jobs or degrees in social work of some kind or other? I generally like social workers. Lucky for me.
We have a good long talk about The Kid, how awesome he truly is, and how Mrs. Social Worker can help us help himself acclimate to the culture of school. We also talk about how IEP's require a formal diagnosis and that she, like all other professionals I've spoken with, is nervous about categorizing The Kid into a disability before he's matured enough to be truly diagnosed (IF he will ever be diagnosed). The effects could be stigmatising, she says.
After that, The Kid and I head home for some TLC and mac-n-cheese.
His head injury, by the way, is pretty good. It is located on the left side of his forehead, about the length, width of an adult pinky. It is also raised just about that much, a good half-inch. No kidding. So The Kid has what, by the looks of it, is a purplish-blue pinky on his forehead. Hope that one sticks around until picture day!!!
He was so fine, pupils equal and reactive and all, no puking (which wouldn't concern me at all, remind me to write a post about The Kid and his frequent puking), so I send him back to school for PM kindergarten, at 12:15. I spend the remainder of the afternoon "working from home," also known as, calling my sister, mom, doing laundry and watching CNN. I also make some work phone calls and keep up on my work email, I'm a champ, I'm a MULTITASKER...
I pick The Kid up from daycare and we go to run some errands. It's great. We're having fun. Why don't we go to a restaurant, The Kid suggests. Like all children who enjoy restuarants (myself included), The Kid knows when best to pluck the ripe opportunity to hit mom up for a meal in a restaurant. Wait at least a week from your last dining-out experience, find a day you've been out and about for at least an hour, when mom is harried, and the sense exists that cooking might not be something she'd not want to do...
It just so happens that my sister's birthday was this week, and my mom had taken her to The Olive Garden for lunch. I've not eaten at the OG since college. The sense-memory of their breadsticks sprung from me and a desire for the OG hit me like a stoner craves Taco Bell. The Kid suggested the restaurant when we were approximately .02 miles away from the OG. Aw, shoot.
Lovely dinner, until, near the end, The Kid makes the cough. THE COUGH. He and I know THE COUGH all too well. Like firefighters, we spring to action, sprint to the bathroom. The puking is about to start. The Kid knows that now is not the time to have the "but I'm a boy, I should go into the men's room" fight, and opens the women's restroom door just in time to projectile vomit onto the ceramic tiles so that it spreads from one end of the stalls back to the handicapped door, closed in the back of the aisle. He makes it to his chosen toilet, I'm on his heels, and no, I'm sliding... I slid on The Kid's output until I slammed into the handicapped door. The occupant in that stall says, "Um, I'm in here!" and I start laughing. The Kid is alternately crying and vomiting, and I'm freaking laughing. All I can think of is this really bad movie this film-student friend of mine made in college where this guy was in the bathroom (I believe said guy in bathroom was my then-boyfriend) when a crazed lunatic or zombie was trying to bust into the bathroom to complete his deadly mission or eat brains or whatever, and the guy in the bathroom says, "um, occupied!" in a really sing-songy voice. This was that character's last thing he ever said. It was hilarious.
And this is hilarious. Oh, wait, no it is not. The Kid is puking. But are his pupils equal and reactive? I can't see! Poor Kid! Puking in the OG!
When he's done, $4.95 down the toilet, he appears, like usual after a puking spell brought on by THE COUGH, perfectly fine, although in need of a good hand washing, and in possession of a good case of puke-breath.
After we cleaned up The Kid and the bathroom (it really was slippery), we headed out to the front of the restaurant, where the hostess was concerned. The Kid just said, "It wasn't because of the food here, well, it was, but I just liked it a little too much." He ate too fast, that's The Kid's diagnosis. As long as it isn't due to the purple pinky on his head.
For the first time since he was a baby, I've checked in on him sleeping about three times tonight. All's well that ends well. I have to say it was a good day, right, Dr. Dre?