When I was a kid this picture hung in the nurses office in my elementary school. I remember it well. I don't remember being a hypochondriac, but thinking back I know that picture all too well for being an infrequent visitor.
It snowed today (in Ohio? who'd thought?) and the kids were let out an hour early from school. Bubba had an orthodontic consult this afternoon, and with the timing of the early dismissal and the late school bus I was idling in the driveway waiting for him when the bus finally came. Luckily we had gone to the dentist for a cleaning on Monday, and we had a fresh toothbrush and mini toothpaste in the car, because Bubba had some seriously gross school teeth. I thought I'd do the orthodontist a favor and I had Bubba brush his teeth on the way to the consult.
Bubba, being challenged, or a boy, or just plain ole' Bubba, popped the toothbrush in his mouth, worked up a froth, and two seconds later had to sneeze. With the toothbrush in his mouth and nowhere to spit in the moving car he opened a corner of his mouth and daintily sneezed without too much of a fuss. The first time.
Then his second sneeze started brewing. Dramatically he started sucking in a reeling back, so I yelled, "Not through your mouth!" before I thought too much about it. I was concerned that he would spit all over the dashboard of my car. Listening to his mother's instructions for the first time in his life he let the sneeze of a lifetime flow through his nose.
Let's just say that a garden hose would have done less damage. And what did I do? Bubba stared at me in shock, then I burst out laughing like I haven't laughed in ten years. Bubba saw me hysterically laughing and he howled along with me. My first thought after regaining my composure was at how much I have mellowed. If Bubba or Hannah would have sprayed something all over the inside of my car when they were little, I would have had a monologuing yell fest. So, of coarse, I started analyzing my life. Do I have less stress? Is it because I work and am away from Bubba and Hannah all day, and when I am with them I seem a tad bit more sane? Do I just get along better with kids that can talk?
I stopped laughing about an hour later when the bill for "phase one" of Bubba's orthodontia was revealed. $4000