Thumb Insurance

Except for the general excitement in the air (schools are still closed for the holidays), today has been a pretty regular Tuesday. I took Girlchild to Aikido tonight, while Manchild and Captain Schenanigans stayed home to take a stab at finding places for the Christmas plunder. I’d had my fill after 2 attempts, I had to get out of that den of chaos!

After Aikido we returned home to find an injury and a war story on Manchild’s thumb. It seems as though when his father told Manchild to wash his hands, Manchild interpreted it as “run into the bathroom, open the drawer, and grab my razor with your fingers”. Resulting in multiple attempts with Band-aids (those little nubbins are hard to keep wrapped) and some blatant requests for sympathy.

It wasn’t until Manchild had actually been in bed for about 10 minutes, laying with Captain Schenanigans, that the wailing began. Real, honest, gut wrenching sobs. Seeing as though no end was appearing in sight, I meandered into Manchild’s room to see what had broken his heart.

“He can’t suck his thumb with a Band-aid on.” Captain Schenanigans informed me matter-of-factly. Really?! I took my turn lying with Manchild, and listening to his repeating lament about his wounded thumb and the wretched bandage. Figuring it wasn’t that big of a cut, I went ahead and removed the bang-aid. Manchild paused, carefully placed his left thumb in his mouth, and took it for a test drive. The room was so still and silent I mentally considered myself a genius. Until the crying began again. It hurt too much.

Taking Manchild’s face in my palm, I smoothed out his tears with my thumb and stroked the side of his face while he quieted, then settled down. Manchild usually is asleep mere minutes after you lay with him, and like a heat seeking missile, will generally stay in any bed until the person he’s barnacled himself up to starts their day. He sneaks into my bed every night in order to perfect this routine.

Just as it was looking like Manchild may be quiet for the night, after 30 minutes of soothing, Girlchild begins calling my name. Louder, and louder, and then bursts into the room to complain that her father has told her it is bedtime! Because we don’t do this every. Single. Night. Now Captain ushers one indignant Girlchild into the bathroom for chomper brushin’, and Manchild wails like a tornado siren because he just remembered he can’t suck his thumb. Nice.

An hour later, we now have 2 crying children. Manchild has not given in to rest, refusing to believe that his body could betray him in this way, and is very much resembling a fussy newborn. I almost wished he had a pacifier (because, for his own personal reasons, the right thumb is completely unsuitable, as is anything else)! But then I remembered he is a 4 year old boy, and we were just discussing cutting down on thumb sucking round this joint at the dinner table tonight. Something about watching your 6 year old try to eat dinner around her thumb is annoying.

Girlchild is crying because she has a sore throat, and can’t think of anything to think about, in order to keep herself from thinking about her sore throat. Hello anxiety, welcome back to the fold. We didn’t miss you. So, despite 3 doses of cold medication tonight, Girlchild’s a sobbing mess, too.

As I type this, Girlchild is starting to settle. Since all of my helpful suggestions of pondersome topics proved only to enraged her, I retreated to the safety of the shower in order to keep from being sucked back into her mind games.

As I stepped trepidatiously out of the bathroom 20 minutes later, Manchild had Captain Schenanigans on his bed, once again reminiscent of the newborn days. My husband had calmed this distraught little guy until he succumbed to fatigue and passed out face down in his pillow. Poor kid.

Girlchild’s decongestant and antihistamine cocktail finally hit it’s therapeutic level and she’s knocked out in my bed. I had hoped a change of scenery would chill her anxious mind out, which it didn’t, but my mighty Captain has no problem lugging her back to her  quarters.

All in all, it took 1.5 hours for Manchild to fall asleep, and Girlchild an hour. I suggested to Captain Schenanigans the benefit of a cap to his razor. Perhaps one with a pad lock, maybe surrounded by an electric fence. Or just duct taping a permanent glove over the precious left thumb of our last born. Because, Heaven help me,  we can NOT have another injury to that phalange. Head traumas he can stand, huge lumps and bruises- notta problem. Glue to forehead gashes, stitches through the fat down to the muscle of his arm, not a problem. ALL of those ER visits resulted in less crying than tonight. In 4 years, no injury has kept him from sleep like a cut to the left thumb. I’m gonna need insurance for that…


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