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Fleeing the Authorities October 10, 2008

Posted by hopeauthority in Autism, Children, Health, humor, Parenting, special needs.
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I swear. Any day now they’re coming. Surely they’re coming to take them away.

At the risk of sounding paranoid… I feel like my name is on some government list. Red-flagged. Black-balled. Whatever the term is for too many visits to the ER. Or too many calls to poison control. (Do you know that the triage nurse actually said we looked familiar last time we were in the ER in August?!)

And it’s not that I’m a neglectful mom. On the contrary: I am a hovering, sleep-deprived, permanent shadow… A “nervous Nelly” whose been on the wrong side of that 1 in 150 kind of statistic a few too many times in my life to ever take anything less than very seriously. In short, I always go to the ER…or call poison control…when in doubt.

And despite all the hovering, somehow… in the nanosecond that I blink or the millisecond that I pee… my son will get into some kind of trouble–or just look like he did. And his verbals aren’t up to speed to explain himself.

Like yesterday. Off from school and playing with his favorite 40 toys. Phone rings…or should I say opportunity knocks? In the time it took to grab the phone and turn back to him (or actually to the space he used to occupy), he was upstairs.

Rounding the corner at breakneck speed, I spy an open bottle of sunblock standing on a lower level step. Hot on his heels in what felt like one of those slow motion movie scenes that they use to build drama, I reach the top of the stairs and catch him as he’s putting his toothbrush in his mouth. “Noooooooo!”

Like a lion tamer pulling apart the jaws of the beast, I shove my entire nose into his mouth in an attempt to check for the smell of the lotion. No scent. The inspection continues. No pasty white coating anywhere. Long sleeves are free of white lotion smears. The bottle threads are completely free of any lotion or wetness of any kind. It would seem that he didn’t drink any sunblock.

But, then why the bee-line for the toothbrush?

And even though I know better, I ask him, exasperated: “Did you drink this?”

“Yeah.”

Then, making moronic gestures like he’s deaf or something, I ask “Did you open this and (gesture) swallow it?”

“Yeah.”

“Did you just smell this and put it back down?”

“Yeah.” And now he’s starting to laugh at me.

After I compose myself, I decide that the little devil stuck his tiny little tongue into the neck of the bottle and got a teeny taste of the vile lotion and headed for the toothbrush. So I didn’t go to the ER– for the first time ever.

But I did call poison control. The woman said he’d have to swallow a ton of it to need medical assistance. She also said my voice sounded familiar! (No, I’m kidding on that one.)

But this was ‘C’s’ second run-in with the sunblock. Back when we actually needed sunblock in June, he sprayed it in his eye! (“Hello, Poison Control. Yes, it’s me again…”)

And in case you’re wondering why it was on the step, I had just retrieved it from the garage (when I was cleaning up for the gargage sale that I’ve now put off for a week) and was going to bring it up to the closet on the next trip upstairs. So stupid, I know…

I figure that ‘C’ has discriminating taste. He’d never settle for an ordinary bottle of Coppertone. He obviously prefers that ridiculously-expensive $38 tube of organic, healthy SPF 95 glue I was suckered into buying for him last summer.

Maybe next year we’ll take our chances with the sun? Hey, everyone needs some Vitamin D, ya know…

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