Wednesday, March 31st 2010
Caden-6yr’s Very Healthy Life Lesson

These are photos of Caden-6yr. (none were taken today.) In case you can’t tell… he’s  a real stinker.  He gets that from me, I’m afraid (the monster truck on the slice of birthday cake says it all). Of all of the boys, his personality and mine are probably closest.

Today he’s home sick.

But he isn’t really sick. What a stinker.  It started last night at baseball practice. His friend Kevin really WAS getting over being sick. And Caden-6yr found this to be somehow… glamorous. Or fun. Or in some way, very very positive and yea for ILLNESS and let’s invite that into OUR lives by whatever means possible, including using his frighteningly honed acting ability to convincingly act sick. Even though, you know, he’s not.

So I pick him up from one baseball practice and am taking him to another baseball practice for Ethan-9yr, since our whole lives suddenly revolve around baseball and how did that happen…? Caden-6yr sits in the backseat and tells me – as soon as we are driving – that he might throw up.

I question him and remember that Mike did not mention any of this when I saw him just a few minutes ago, and Caden-6yr had been in Mike’s very capable care and there’s a good chance this is just an act, except that he looks green. But Caden-6yr is such an actor he can turn himself green if he wants to. And he wanted to. I decided it was an act. And maybe the tint in the rearview mirror. I have learned to NEVER underestimate this child’s acting abilities.

So I told him to get his batting helmet and throw up in that if he needed to, instead of all over the car. (I told Mike that later and he freaked. out. Apparently batting helmets have holes in them and it would just be a bit of a Vomit in a Noodle Strainer Kinda Thing before it ended up all over the car anyway. Well. I’m new to baseball and its equipment. That’s been established already, thankssomuch, Mike.) I wasn’t really concerned. I mean. He’s faking. Because his buddy Kevin made sick look so GOOD and all.

We get to the 2nd baseball practice of the night and Seth-4yr begs me to run with him. The child loves to run. I love to run. He loves to run with me. So we do. I lay out an ugly gray hoodie of mine on the dirt and let Caden-6yr sit on it while I run with his brother. Caden-6yr moans and asks what would happen if he threw up on my hoodie.

“Babe. You’re outside. Throw up on the dirt.” And I know what he was thinking. Because I was thinking it, too. If he really were sick – which he isn’t – he could throw up all over that hoodie and I’d get rid of it in the nearest Dumpster and never wear it again and that might be a good end to the story because that awful hoodie is ug.lee.

I left him and ran with Seth-4yr. We ran to a fee, far far away. ‘Fee’ is how Seth-4yr says ‘tree.’  Then we ran to another fee. Then we ran out of fees, since it’s West Texas and it was kinda surprising we had two fees in the first place, and we ran back to Caden-6yr. And repeat. And repeat. And then Caden-6yr thought that Seth-4yr and I were making health look…. kinda good. So he asked if HE could run.

I shoulda said yes.

But I said no.

I’m mean like that. And have I mentioned his acting skills? I wasn’t completely sure.  But he seemed fine all last night when he was chasing his brothers while brushing his teeth. I hate it when they do that. I’m so afraid they’re going to ram  a toothbrush through their throats or something.

And then this morning. Seemed fine.

I was at a store buying photo albums  when the school nurse called. Last week my mother printed out photos and told me I had to put them in albums. I would normally backtalk that sort of maternal directive – and I thought about it – but I’ve been meaning to print photos for years and put them into albums and never have so maybe I should just shut my mouth already and do it and say thank you.

Have I mentioned I never answer the phone? Unless it’s a school nurse. I have a special “OH MY GOSH ANSWER THE PHONE, KELS, IT’S THE SCHOOL NURSE” message pop up with that number on my cell phone just so that I don’t forget and let my phone phobia get the best of me. I’m crazy like that.

She said she had Caden-6yr in her office and he wasn’t feeling well and he said that he threw up in the bathroom but no one actually saw him…. but the policy says… if you throw up… you HAVE to go home….

There were lots of pauses in her delivery, and each one of them silently but effectively screamed, “Your kid is real cute and he is really lying. Lying up to his eyeballs.  But this particular lie means he has to go home anyway, but we’re both mothers you and I, and we both know what’s going on here.”

So I picked him up. He could barely keep a straight face. What a stinker. We got out to the car. I asked him what the three rules are. There are just three, all encompassing but easy to remember rules in our house.

“Be honest, be obedient, be respectful,” he said.

“Yes. And keeping those in mind, babe, did you really throw up in that bathroom?”

He looked at his lap. Then he shook his head. “No, I am SO sorry I lied.” He looked like he was going to cry, and not in his Totally Fake But Real and Wet Tears way.

I kinda melted. I love a kid who is quick to own up to his own faults and try to make them right. Caden-6yr does that SO WELL.

Turns out he sorta didn’t feel well, and so he decided to go for broke. And not knowing how true THAT was, I took him home. I thought about marching him back in there and making him apologize and stay – but what if he just felt some awful virus coming on and it wasn’t quite here yet…? Knowing him, Caden-6yr would go back in, apologize, and then do his Look I’m Turning Myself Green trick and then I’d have to make a u-turn and go get him again.

So I took him home. What I didn’t tell him was that I planned to kiss him and hold him and love him and only give him crackers and bananas and not let him watch television and make him take long naps and write a letter of apology to the school nurse for lying and do whatever else I could to thoroughly drive him crazy with my mothering and nursing until he never wanted to do this again, no matter how good Kevin makes sick look.

Kevin is  a sweet, really cute kid. He could make anything look good. Caden-6yr needs to learn discernment, though.

Ha! Score one for Motherhood. He just came out from his room and said  - and I accurately and gleefully quote – “that is the most longest, boring nap EVER and WHY  can’t I watch television like Seth…?! MOooOOOOm!”

Heh heh. I think we’re learning something today. It might not be what the REST of the kindergarteners are busy learning, but that is okay with me.

What a stinker.


2 Comments on “Caden-6yr’s Very Healthy Life Lesson”

April 2nd, 2010
8:25 pm

I LOVE it! :)

We’ve been going thru almost the same thing with our 6yo… Maybe it’s the age. Since we have been homeschooling, sickness means no school and lots of TV…or it did… But every morning my son whined he was “not feeling well”… turning green, crying… the whole bit. And sometimes he was… but it was really hard to tell. Finally, I came up with the response, “well, go back to bed and no TV or playing”…. Wonder of wonders, he’s started to snap out of it!! LOL.

It’s so nice to know I’m not the only one! :)


[...] had the nerve to get legitimately, genuinely, very very very SICK. Right after totally faking it. And I know what you’re thinking, right? maybe he wasn’t faking it after all…. [...]

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