Friday, October 15, 2010

My Friday, So Far

There's no Pay It Forward Friday today because this story needs to be told ASAP.  Consider it my little gift to you for making you feel better about your own life.  Because my life, in comparison, is a total circus.  Here's my proof.

William was up way too early this morning which meant he watched too much television which meant his behavior was less than desirable.  So I fed the kids lunch a half hour early and ushered them straight into naptime.

"Today you must sleep," I declared to William.

I make an attempt at nap for William everyday but 80% of the time he ends up reading books and asking if he can come out an hour later.  Today would be the 20% where he actually falls asleep.  Or so I told myself.

So the kids are in their rooms and I come downstairs to bask in the quiet and stillness of the house.  I decide a batch of oatmeal chocolate chip cookies sounds perfect for this crisp, fall day.  I throw the sugar and butter in the KitchenAid and let it whirl.  Two eggs, some vanilla...


"William, get back into bed.  It's time for a rest."

"But, Mommy, I just need your help with something."

This is gonna be good.  What great distraction tactic will he come up with today?

"What do you need help with, William?"

"I need help getting something out of my ear."

"What?  What's in your ear?"

Now he's all the way downstairs and standing in front of me in the kitchen.

"Well, I was doing this magic trick.  I had this button in my hands like this."

He shows me two closed fists.

"And then it disappeared!  And then I tried to get it out of my ear but it couldn't come out."

"William, that's a magic trick.  Only a magician knows how to do that."

"But where's the button?"

"I don't know.  Did you drop it?  Is it in your bed?"

"No.  I told you, it's in my ear."

"Which ear?"

"This one."

He points to his right ear.  I look into his right ear.  I see nothing.

"William, there's nothing in your ear.  You must have dropped the button somewhere."

"No, Mommy.  It's stuck in my ear.  I told you."

This time I stick my pinky finger, the finger containing my extra long manicured nail, way into his ear.  Way further back than nature ever intended, my nail hits something hard.


I gasp.


"Mommy, I'm so sorry, I'm SO SORRY!"


He starts digging in his ear.

"DON'T DO THAT!" I shout, "You'll push it in even further!"

I run upstairs and grab my tweezers.  I pull his earlobe out as far as I can and still see nothing.

"Oh, William, oh, William.  This is baaaaaad!"

Blindly, I slowly insert my tweezers into his ear.  I feel the tip of the tweezers hit the button.  I quickly squeeze and pull out.  Nothing.  And now I fear I've pushed the thing in further.

Oh my God we are that family!  We are the family with the kid that sticks the marble up his nose and has to go into the ER to have it surgically removed.  I make fun of those people.  What kid has parents stupid enough to not be paying attention when they stick a fricken marble up their nose?  Except it's his ear.  Which is way worse because what if it goes all the way in and starts floating around in his brain?  And, oh my God, there was this lady last night on Private Practice that had this pressure on her brain and she had chronic, excruciating pain.  He's going to have chronic, excruciating pain!  And another one of my kids is going to need fricken full-on skull surgery!

Yes, it's true.  I panicked.  I paced the house, wringing my hands, not even caring that my 3-year-old son was watching his mom in a complete panic.

Good! He should see me panicking!  This is a time to panic!  It serves him right!

Not really knowing what my next steps should be, I call Brian.  He doesn't answer.  I know that he's at a client lunch so I text him: You need to call me back asap.  We have an emergency.

I made sure not to include any exclamation points.  Exclamation points equal death.  And we weren't talking death.  At least not yet.

He called me back less than a minute later at which point I made a mental note to later thank him for realizing that this indeed warranted an immediate callback and was not like the rest of the times he ignores me when I've asked him to call me back asap because the immediate concern was that we were out of milk and I need him to pick some up for me.

"Ohmygod, Brian, William stuck a button in his ear and I can't get it out!  It's WAY in there!  I can't even see it! WhatdoIdo?!WhatdoIdo?!WhatdoIdo?!"

"Whoa! Calm down.  Is he crying?"


"Is he in pain?"

"I don't think so."

"OK, then.  Let's not panic.  I'll call the triage nurse since you obviously are in no state to speak with anyone coherently.  Can you text me the number?"


We hang up the phone.  I text him the nurse's number.

Then I start playing the whole doctor's office scenario out on my head.  We'd bring him in.  They'd laugh at us.  William would be way more scared in there than he is at home.  They'll probably end up using a tweezers just like mine to get it out.  And then I'll look stupid for not being able to get it out on my own.  And we'll be slapped with an outrageous office visit bill.

I grab a flashlight and leave the tweezers alone for a moment.

"William, come here."

I lean his head all the way to the side and pull his ear lobe out as far as I can.  I shine my flashlight into his ear just so and I can finally see the tiny pink button that came as an extra with one of my sweaters I purchased long ago.

I see the button is facing sideways so that if I could just get my tweezers that far in, it would be very easy to grab hold of the edge and pull the button out.  The problem is that if I put down the flashlight, the button disappears from sight.  If I keep the flashlight but let go of his lobe, the button again disappears from sight.  I need to a third hand to maneuver the tweezers.  Then I have an idea!

I usher William downstairs to Brian's music room.  I turn on his piano light, the one with the bendy arm, and fixate it so that it's shining directly into his ear.


"OK, Mommy."

I pull his lobe out and insert my tweezers.  I pinch the tweezers together and when I'm sure I've got hold of the button, I squeeze the tweezers with all my might and pull out.  The button slid out effortlessly.

The offending button, the triumphant tweezers and a dime for comparison.

I immediately had mixed emotions. I kind of wanted to nominate myself for mother of the year. But I also I kind of wanted to slap William. But I also I kind of wanted to give him a giant hug.

"Wow!  Good job, Mommy!"

"William.  This was very serious!  You don't ever, ever, EVER stick things in your ears or up your nose, or, or...anywhere.  Do you understand?  It's very dangerous and the doctors might have to cut you open to get it out."

"OK, Mommy.  I won't do it again.  I promise."

At that moment the triage nurse called to give me instructions on how to get it out.

"No worries, I already got it out."

"OK, and have you used this as a teaching opportunity?"

Sigh.  We are soooooooo that family.

"Yes, thank you for calling.  Goodbye."

And that, my friends, has been my Friday.

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