So yesterday I was sitting here procrastinating putting the laundry away and listening to the joyful sounds of merriment coming from outside, where my sons were playing machines. Machines is a game they play where they find the biggest patch of dirt they can and then run their trucks and construction vehicles and clothing through it. Machines, along with every other game my boys play, usually lasts about ten minutes before Ryan and Sam reach an Impasse, which results in Much Crying and Screaming, and often ends in Two Boys on the Couch. Yesterday, though, before things could go from happy dirt hauling to angry mud slinging, Ryan came inside.
“Mommy, my eye feels tickly and it’s making me blink a lot.”
Now, I don’t know about you but “tickly” and “blink a lot” don’t really throw me into a panic. I looked at the offensive eye, which looked a bit reddish, possibly because Ryan was digging at it. With his fingers. Which had two minutes previously been digging in the dirt.
“I think you should go wash your hands, Buddy,” I suggested. “You have dirt on your fingers and you’re going to get it in your eye and it won’t feel very good.”
“Well, okay,” my son said, though clearly he thought that Mommy was crazy for suggesting that washing his hands could fix his eye. He went dutifully off to the bathroom, and I continued emailing my sister.
Soon, however, it became obvious that soap and water and a fluffy towel were not going to fix this problem. The sounds coming from the bathroom escalated from running water to wimpering, which soon became a full-on Ryan howl.
“Washing my hands didn’t HELP!!!” he wept.
“Well, does your eye hurt?” I asked, confused. Remember, he told me it was tickly. Not hurty.
“It just feels all TICKLY!” he cried.
“Well, maybe you got something in it. Try to blink a lot, honey. And keep your fingers out of it. Here, let me look.” I held his eyelids open and he rolled his eyeball around hysterically. It was redder now, but I couldn’t see anything in it. “You need to blink. Blinking makes tears, and tears will help wash something out if you got something in your eye.”
“I DIDN’T GET ANYTHING IN MY EYE!!!”
“Ryan. Calm down. What were you doing when your eye started to feel tickly?”
“PLAYING IN THE DIRT!!!”
“Yeah. You probably got dirt in your eye. But I don’t see anything in there so I think it’s gone. Blink, Buddy. That will help it feel better.”
My son looked at me with one last look of tear-streaked, six-going-on-sixteen loathing, and marched down to the basement, where he continued weeping like his eye was about to fall out.
I think you’d better come home for a minute, I IM’ed my husband.
Because Ryan got something in his eye and I need you to hold him down so I can flush it out.
Oh, Goody. I’ll be right there.
It is times like these that I am very thankful my husband works so close. By the time he got here, Ryan was nearly in full-on hysterics.
“Come here, Ryan. We need to do something with your eye.”
“NOT EYEDROPS!!! I WILL NOT HAVE EYEDROPS”
Oh, buddy, if only you knew.
A moment later, we were ready. Ryan was shirtless, laying back on the mat from Gracie’s changing table on his bed, screaming that he was not a baby. I had a hand towel soaked in water so that I could drip it in his eye. And Art was ready to use his mad security skills and hold the flailing boy down.
“I DON’T WANT YOU TO DO THIS!!!”
“I’m sorry, bud, but if there’s something in your eye we need to get it out. It’s either this or you lay under the faucet with your eye open.” I spoke in my best soothing voice, which is probably pretty crummy actually because I have little patience for the dramatics of injured children, as Art held Ryan’s eye open and I squeezed warm water into it.
“AAAAHHHHH!!! YOU GUYS NEED TO STOP RIGHT NOW! I DO NOT LIKE THIS! THIS IS NOT GOOD! STOP IT YOU GUYS!”
Again with the water, again with the screaming.
“YOU GUYS NEED TO STOP THIS RIGHT NOW! YOU’RE HURTING ME!!! YOU HAVE TO STOP!”
“I JUST HATE DIRT! WHY DID THE DIRT COME IN MY EYE? I DO NOT LIKE DIRT AT ALL!”
Eventually we stopped. I gave him a towel to dry his face with. He was still a wreck, however.
“I DO NOT LIKE SATAN!!”
“SATAN MAKES BAD THINGS HAPPEN AND HE MADE THAT DIRT GO IN MY EYE! I HATE SATAN!”
“Buddy, I don’t think you can blame Satan that dirt got in your eye. Stuff like that just happens sometimes.”
“BECAUSE OF SATAN!!!”
Whatever. I decided that maybe while my son was in hysterics would not be the best time to delve into the deeps of demonology.
“Are you going to get up? You can. We’re all done.”
“No. Gracie’s changing pad is comfortable.”
“Okay, then. I’m going to go downstairs. We’ll see how it’s feeling in a bit.”
A moment later he followed me downstairs, where he curled up on the couch with his pillow and the towel he had been drying his face on. And within half an hour he was willing to admit his eye was maybe feeling a little bit better.
On Sunday, Ryan’s Sunday School take-home paper had a spot where he could fill in the faces of the members of his family. It’s hilarious so I’m sharing it with you.
Be thankful. Your day is about to get a little happier.
Ladies and Gentlemen, it is with great pride that I present to you
The Noseless Together Family, by Ryan
Daddy (I love that he used our names instead of Mom and Dad)
The artist himself, apparently after applying Miracle Grow to his hair
Little brother, who must have done something naughty to warrant the use of his full name
Baby sister, whose name he hasn’t learned to spell yet, I guess
And, of course, since we only have five people in our family, it is only natural that he would fill that sixth face with . . .
the dog. Complete with big floppy ears, a dog tongue, and a pig dog nose.
I told you it would make your day happier.
Have a great one, y’all.