I am a mother. Which is simultaneously the best and worst job I’ve ever had. I adopted my daughter, Emma. It was a private adoption and I was present at her birth. From the second she was born I got to hold her in my arms. It was the best moment of my life.
However, I don’t think I’m alone when I confess that being a mother isn’t all fun. Sometimes it’s heartbreaking. Sometimes you just want to pull your hair out. Like the other day when Emma told me she hates her name and wants me to start calling her Jinx from now on. (Yeah, ain’t gonna happen.)
Yesterday, I got a phone call from the school nurse at Emma’s middle school. I should tell you that phone calls from the school nurse happen several times a year. Emma is a pretty smart kid and she figured out in first grade that if you can buffalo the school nurse into thinking you’re sick or hurt she can make your mother come and get you out of school.
Yesterday, Emma had gone to the school nurse complaining about her wrist. Yes, it was true that she had sprained her wrist playing hockey Monday night. She told the nurse she had to go home because of the incredible and intense pain and, “Look, I don’t have complete rotation. I can’t even hold a pencil.” Emma demonstrated trying to hold a pencil, but it kept slipping though her fingers and falling to the floor.
When the nurse called me, I told her Emma knew she was new on the job and was trying to take advantage of her. I told her about the other times I had been called by someone at Emma’s school.
Here are a few of the highlights:
First Grade: The teacher called because Emma was disrupting her entire class. Emma was pretending to be a puppy and kept sniffing and licking the other students. I told the teacher to roll up a newspaper and hit it against her desk. The noise would scare her into submission.
Second grade: Emma was picking leaves off the plants in the school room and eating them. I told the teacher to spray them with tobacco sauce and she would stop. It had worked at home.
Third grade: The school nurse called because Emma was complaining of “growing pains” in her feet. She said she couldn’t walk down the hallway and needed a wheelchair. The nurse called bullshit on that one all on her own.
Fourth grade: Emma complained to the nurse that she was itchy and couldn’t concentrate. She thought she was allergic to school and probably should be homeschooled. I gave her “allergy pills” every morning for a whole month. Little did she know they were actually “Beano” pills.
Fifth grade: Emma went blind for a whole hour. It was some mysterious disease. It was quite unfortunate that it happened in English class and she couldn’t read out loud. It mysteriously disappeared during her dance class (her favorite.)
So you can see what I have to deal with here. Fortunately, I can use all this stuff as fodder for future stories and books. It’s the least I can get from all the phone calls I’ve had to suffer through.
And, Jinx, if you’re reading this, I am so sorry about the incredible and intense pain in your wrist, but you’ll just have to write with your left hand from now on. And that pain pill I gave you this morning? It was actually a stool softener.
My Young Adult book is now available in both paperback and ebook.
If you buy the paperback, you can purchase the ebook for only 99 cents!