My fourth son and baby, Sean, never liked school. Now in Kindergarten, he faced each day of nursery and pre-k with some type of tearful emotion. Inevitably, he would be fine after we dropped him off and full of joy when we would pick him up. It didn’t help during pre-kindergarten that he missed many, many days of school to a persistent cough which to our surprise and dismay turned out to be whooping cough, even though he did receive his inoculations. It came as no surprise that Kindergarten wasn’t met with favorably either, although, we hoped for the best since he would be attending the same school as his big brother Jason.
Many days since September he would say he didn’t feel well and would pay the school nurse frequent visits. He would complain to me in the morning or not eat his lunch, but eventually as time wore on, he has gradually gotten better, only clinging slightly to my leg. Talks from his loving teacher and calls from the nurse are commonplace regarding Sean and his “stomach ache”. (Sound familiar mom?) After a busy weekend and a lot of rushing this morning, I wasn’t surprised when I heard him utter on the way out of the house this morning, “my stomach hurts”. I pooh-poohed it as nerves since it was raining, we couldn’t walk and my husband was late getting back to us with the car. As Frank pulled up, Sean complained when I nudged him toward the car. But, they all arrived on time and yet another week of school began.
I was off from work today, and Frank had another morning appointment, so we planned on spending the afternoon “together”. He left for his appointment and I finished my morning workout. To save money, I started my own waxing. I was doing laundry and planned on jumping right in the shower after I finished torturing my self. Since I had a quiet house alone and wanted to expedite the laundering, I undressed before the skin ripping began. I was half way done when the phone rang…it was the elementary school and on the line was the school nurse, “Hi Mrs. Haggerty, my friend Sean came to see me again today.” “Ugh!” rang out in my head. She began by discussing one never knows if he is really sick, then onto how he ran around like a maniac in gym and sometimes when he gets upset, he will visit her office which is across the hall from his brother where she will take him to say hi and it makes him feel better. But, today, Jason wasn’t in his class so she wanted to inform me and get my thoughts. I continued the brutality that laid below while I told her the events of the morning, but then realized my neighbors who we are always with and whom we carpool had the dreaded stomach bug run rampant through their home this weekend. No sooner did I pull the muslin then my son walked back in her office. She put him on the phone and I could barely hear him. I was trying to figure out if he was sick or sad and then he was gone, the phone made a sound as if it fell and the next thing I hear is the nurse back on the phone, “HE JUST THREW UP ALL OVER ME!” My husband has the car, I’m covered in wax in a very inconvenient place, it’s raining and I have no dirty clothes to put on. “Ok”, I replied, “let me find an umbrella and I will walk there, I don’t have a car.” “NO”, she yelled “CALL A CAB IF YOU HAVE TO!” I hung up the phone, looked at myself and almost peed myself laughing so hard. I grabbed pajama pants, put on my husband’s shirt (thank God he’s a slob and doesn’t put his clothes away), called my neighbor, borrowed his car, and ran up to school all sticky.
When I arrived in the nurse’s office, she was in the bathroom changing and Lisa, the Janitor, was cleaning up my son’s mess. Sean was waiting for me, my poor baby, looking terrible. As I changed his clothes, he vomited again in the bucket while I gagged. I’m terrible with vomit. My dear husband handles it much better than me. After ten thousand apologies I took my sick baby home and he has gotten sick three more times. Now he is gassing us and laughing. I can’t breathe and he thinks it’s hysterical. I guess he’s getting better. OH, and yeh, I finally finished my wax.