Thursday, April 28th 2011
Calls From Sheila

Last night i went to bed, there were two hours of blissful rest. And then four elbows and feet came and smashed into my shoulder blades and legs for the rest of the night. Caden-7yr and Seth-5yr knew there was plenty of room in that bed for them AND their pointy elbows. This morning, I was kinda tense and bruised and tired and  all worked up over nothing. And everything.

I got out of a class at the gym and saw that I’d missed a call from the School Nurse and I irrationally burst into tears before I could successfully return her call. The thought of another hurt child was too much after The Sleepless Night of Many Elbows. It turned out to be a teacher using the School Nurse’s phone to ask a question about a fundraiser.

I read Mysti’s sweet comment on the previous post, took a deep breath, and decided I’d be fine. And i was. I emailed Mysti and sheepishly confessed I’d just cried in a parking lot over a missed call from someone Not The School Nurse and her timing with that encouragement was completely divine, thank you, thank you, Mysti.

A few hours later the School Nurse called.

About Ethan-11yr.

Well, of COURSE she did.  I answered the phone and she said, “Hi, Kelsey.” She didn’t identify herself, and she knew she didn’t need to. I know this woman’s voice. She knows mine. We’ve bonded this month, Sheila and I.

This month Ethan-11yr  has had a small log impaled into his knee AND a massive head injury – neither of which he’s recovered from –  and now… he was covered in a “rash that felt like a lot of pinpricks.”  Sheila thought it was 5ths Disease.


I think 5ths Disease is something that sounds worse than it is. And it sounds like butterflies and chocolate pie when you compare it to a School Nurse Call about a concussion.

I grabbed a bottle of Benadryl, canceled my plans to go hold a friend’s new baby girl, and went to school. Ethan-11yr’s arms were rashy. His face looked pink and rashy, and he was starting to rub his neck a lot. His temperature was 98.5, but he’s like me and we have REALLY low normal body temperatures and so 98.5  technically IS a fever for him.

We had an hour to go before getting his brothers, so I took him to a drugstore and bought Easter chocolate on clearance. Ethan-11yr, who is suddenly observant and disturbingly sensitive,  said, “Awww. You’re upset about me and need chocolate, huh?”

I have taught my children awful things about emotional eating this month. I’d like a chance to model a healthier way of living, really, but THEY HAVE TO STOP GETTING HURT FIRST. Like, NOW.

[Yes, of course I see the error in that thought process, but I don't care. Pass the Cadbury mini eggs, please.]

As I drove to school, I was on the phone telling my mother that Ethan-11yr’s personality is indeed different post-head injury. Whereas before he was a know it all, quick to criticize and impatient… now he’s sunny and sweet and generous and thoughtful.

Caden-7yr has apparently decided that someone must fill the void of cranky know-it-all, and he has gallantly stepped up to the plate. Everything I do or say, he criticizes or questions. He’s irritable and judgmental and has a lot to say all the time about everything.

It’s like one of those movies where two characters with opposite personalities somehow get stuck in each other’s bodies. THAT is what is happening in our home, and let me tell you…  It’s creepy.

As much as I’d like my Ethan-11yr back to his normal creative and opinionated self… i’d also like my sweet, sunny Caden-7yr back.

Mike’s out of town, and at this rate, he won’t understand anything about anyone when he gets back.

(If I start picking my nose all the time and insist on wearing mismatched socks, it means I’ve switched with Seth-5yr.)


3 Comments on “Calls From Sheila”

April 29th, 2011
9:32 am

Sounds like Caden-7yr is having his own little freak out over the change in his brother’s personality. Bless your heart. This has not been your month! Thank goodness for clearance chocolate. Hope your Ethan’s rash goes away quickly.

April 29th, 2011
3:06 pm

There’s nothing worse than watching someone you love suffer and while I may not have kids of my own I know that it has to be 100 times worse when that “someone” is your child. I’m so sorry you and your family have to be going through this right now. The Bible says that all things work together for good to those that love Him and I’m praying that He’ll work that out in your life right now.
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May 12th, 2011
5:38 pm

that last line made me laugh so hard i snorted.

too stinkin’ funny.
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