This morning around 2 AM I woke up with The Baby sleeping on my right arm snoring loudly, The Boy lying on my left arm and The Cat sleeping on top of my head. I couldn't feel either arm and the top of my head itched. Probably fleas. Could it get any worse?
And then i swallowed.
Terrible sore throat! Ack.
And to think I thought I woke up abruptly because I was being compressed to death.
In preparing for The Teenagers 18th birthday in 2 months I was fortunate enough to obtain an appointment to have her IQ tested at the same time as The Boy's routine behavior specialist follow up at noon today in the Big City. Of course i would wake up sick,The Boy lost the battle with cold symptoms over night complaining of earaches this morning and The Baby's left eye is practically swollen shut while the right eye is draining goop. Before we leave for the Big City I schedule a pediatricians appointment for The Boy and The Baby. Four appointments in one afternoon in two different cities. Even for me this is pushing it.
We make it to the Big City on time. I am pumped up with Motrin, Claritin and saline nose drops. I think I can do this.
The Boy is doing well in school and not so well at home. I don't even have to say a word to the behavior specialist, however. He walks in the room and says:
"Summer is here. He's driving you crazy right?"
How did he know...
"Do you suppose he has fetal alcohol syndrome?" I ask. I explain how he keeps bringing snakes into the house telling me they are non venomous. There is simply no cause and effect or sense of danger. I am still groping for a diagnosis other than the obvious ADHD and brain fried by birth mother with street drugs and booze in utero.
"Possibly but fetal alcohol is just ADHD on steroids." He answers. He tells me I should get some behavior therapy and I inform him there is no funding for behavior therapy. He suggests a place and I tell him no way am I taking him to a place where everyone wears turbans and the only diagnosis they seem to know is "Bi-Polar Disorder."
"Chicken." he responds.
I inform him if he can come up with a name he approves of...any name...turban or no turban I'll make an appointment. He can't.
I see the psychologist waving me down out of the corner of my eye. I leave the behavior specialist and follow the psychologist into her office to hear how The Teenager's IQ test went.
"She is so cute and she has an answer for everything." she smiles.
Yes, that's The Teenager in a nutshell. No pun intended.
"I asked her who Martin Luther King Junior was and she told me he was the Son Of God."
"I asked her to define the word consume and she informed me it was the act of going somewhere special and coming back soon."
We both burst out laughing.
Only on the way out the door, however, I begin to panic. Not only am I a failure as a Christian mother but I'm a failure as a black history teacher as well. This can't be good.
"Teenager? " I ask. "Who is Martin Luther King Junior?"
"I don't know. I think he's the son of God." she replies.
"Well then who is Jesus if Martin Luther King Junior is the son of God?"
"That's the same question the doctor asked!" she exclaims.
Thirty minutes later I try a new approach.
"Teenager?" I ask. " Who is Jesus?"
"Oh, He's the Son of God," she replies matter of factly.
"Well, then who is Martin Luther King Junior?" I inquire.
"I don't know. Was he the President of the United States or something?"
I'm exasperated at this point. I ask the Teenager if she has forgotten the parade we attend every year on January 16th and studying about Martin Luther King Junior and what a great man he was in the 60's working for equality for black Americans?
"Remember? I HAVE A DREAM?" I conclude dramatically.
"Yeah I remember. And then he went and got himself shot," she answers somewhat sarcastically.
I pop a few more Motrin while swerving down the interstate. I've lost count at this point of how many I've taken. My throat is killing me. I have chills and a fever. I haven't had breakfast or lunch and it's 3 PM. We are on our way to the pediatricians and I have to get something to eat. I am soooo hungry. I make the mistake of saying this out loud.
"Are you thirsty, too?" The Boy asks.
"Are you thirsty enough to drink your own urine out of a snake skin?"
"No. I will never be thirsty enough to drink my own urine out of a snake skin and I think you've been watching too much Man vs Wild"
I pass on the urine and get a drive through sweet tea instead.
We make it to the Pediatrician where The Boy has bilateral ear infections and The Baby has an eye infection with no other symptoms. The doctor e-files the prescriptions to the correct pharmacy this time. By now it's 6:30 and I've been on the road since noon. We finally make it home thank you Jesus and Martin Luther King Junior.
"Whats for dinner?' asks The Teenager.
"Motrin," I inform her.