Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Bite me, Florence fecking Nightingale

It was going fine (by fine, I mean, desire for death was only intermittent) until I ran out of Nurofen. Now my halo has been swallowed up in a cloud of sulphur and swearing; I am sick as a dog and I want everyone to go away and leave me in a dying hole. I have started shouting; the dog is cowering in a corner looking at me folornly with its reproachful eyes and Lashes has told me to stop being horrible. Fingers has gone all silent, which is even worse.

My adored eldest son is on repeat today. He started at half five this morning. It goes like this:

- I hate the eyedrops.

- I am having scaredness about dying again.

- I don't want to DIE. I don't want you to die. Ever.

- Why do we have to die?

- Death is so unfair.

- I never want to die.

- How about if I get the eyedrops only in one eye?

- I never want to grow up I want to be six forever.

- I am still sad about dying.

- But this eye is better! Look! I don't need the drops.

- Will they make a magic potion to make me live forever? Will it be when I am 33? How old will you be when I am 33? That is TOO OLD.

- I am having bad thoughts about death again.

- Why do we die? It is wrong!

- How about I let you do one drop for each new dvd?

- How about when I am twenty? How old will you be? Ok, we will have to take the magic potion then. But are you SURE they will find one?

- I do not want to get old. I am scared.

- I am still having the bad thoughts.

- How about drops only two times a day not three?

- Death - waaaaaah!

On and on he goes, alternating between eyedrops and death with equal mournful intensity. Death is actually starting to look like a pretty attractive option. Initially sympathetic, I have started getting shorter and shorter with him ("Yes, dammit! I get it! You don't want to die and death is unfair! How about we just get on with being alive right now, eh? Now let go of my leg. I need tea."). In desperation we went out to get him another dvd. Instead he chose some stupid Pokémon game that requires me to read every stultifying detail to him. I keep snarling "You HAVE to LEARN TO READ". with the thwarted frustration of one who had hoped for an hour of stolen silence, lying in the dark. Fingers is pushing me over the edge by trying to get me to watch a film about a racing zebra featuring Hayden Panettiere. I have already had to watch it once this morning with Lashes, when Fingers categorically refused to watch, of COURSE. I could happily break the zebra's spindly legs and Hayden wouldn't be far behind. As for the talking pelican, really, don't tempt me.

I am horrible. I am a sucky awful shithead of a mother. Apparently weepettes hate tension and shouting too, so I am a shithead weepette owner too. Seemingly oblivious to what a bitch I am, however, they have all gravitated around me - Fingers is on my knee stopping me typing, Oscar is on my feet and Lashes surgically attached to my shoulder. Children and dogs - amazingly, shame-inducingly forgiving. So, if you'll excuse me, I have a date with Hayden and a pile of dog shit.

PS: If anyone has any clever ideas about these goddam eyedrops I would be so damn grateful. He is totally refusing and he's too big to force now...


peevish said...

OMG, you had me at: "desire for death was only intermittent".

I'll go read the rest now. Oh, and my word verif. is mediless. Seems like part of the problem, no?

peevish said...

You should have named that dog "Reproachful eyes". RE. Ari. Anyway, he is almost as lovely as your sons.

Hope all takes a turn for the better soon.

La Belette Rouge said...

Son, eyes and death. Golly, I am become a Freudian, I couldn't stop thinking of Oedipus. Oh, except Freudians probably don't say golly.

katyboo1 said...

The only thing I can think for eyedrops is that device they use in a Clockwork Orange to force that bloke's eye open. It looks like a metal spider.

I have no idea. I had a hard enough time with liquid antibiotics she just had to drink. I ended up wrapping her in a blanket while someone forced her jaw open and I stroked her throat. I only knew to do this because this is how we give medicine to the cat.

Have you tried kneeling on his chest?

Fat Controller said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jane Henry said...

Oh dear god Jaywalker you HAD me in stitches. I can sympathise about the death being the preferable option. Have no clever things to add re eye drops as it's yonks since I've had that problem but Fat Controller sounds like he's got it nailed. Also I do tend to wash out eyes with boiled (then cooled obviously!) salt water which can clear up conjunctivitis without the eye drops.
If it's any consolation on the bad mother thing, I was absolutely HORRIBLE to all my children on New Year's Eve when I was overtaken with the blackest of black moods, and when I apologised for ruining their evening my six year old told me I hadn't (I had) - thank god they are so forgiving eh?
Thanks for such an hilarious post, and the marmoset thing which Persephone posted on my blog and has made me laugh aloud today.

Fat Controller said...

(Sorry about that..I knew I'd cock it up! I'll try again)

Aaah the old eyedrops problem. When I was a student we were told of three methods of getting eye drops ino kids:'The One Practitioner Method', 'The Two Practitioner Method' and 'The Two Practitioner-Plus-Parent Method'. There is also a ruse known as "Watch the birdie....NAUGHTY birdie!" but you can only get away with it the once.

Try to get the offspring so sit in a high-backed chair with the head resting back and the chin slightly lifted. Stand beside him on the side in which you are going to instil the drop. If it is the LEFT eye then hold the dropper between index finger and thumb of the left hand. Get him to look down initially and draw the upper eyelid up with the right index finger, then get him to look up and draw the lower eyelid down with the left middle finger. this creates a gap between the eyeball and the eyelid into which you can deliver the drop. He will barely feel it there until he looks down again , by which it is too late.

If you are going to do it properly you should pinch across the bridge of the nose after instillation to prevent the drops being immediately flushed down the tear canal, although I'm not sure if this really does any good. He may well report a bitter taste in the back of the throat. This is good.

You need to drop both eyes because if it is a conjunctivitis he has then it will inevitably spread from one eye to the other. You will also need to continue the treatment for a while after the symptoms appear to have cleared up.

I hope this helps. Good luck!

Pochyemu said...

My only advice: pack bags & move town (sans the children, the partner and the dog, natch). I know it seems like a lot of effort now you're sick, but you'll thank me later.

A Woman Of No Importance said...

Wafflette, have you tried getting the CFO to take over the eye-dropping, sometimes kids will do stuff for papas that they won't do for mamans, particularly les gars, I've found - Best of luck, and this was just so funny in spite of the horrors, thank you!

Nimble said...

Here's my eyedrops strategy. It worked pretty well with my braver child. Have the child lie flat, face up. No pillow, you don't want the head tilted. Have them *close* their eyes and drop the drops in the inner corners of the eye(s). Now have the child blink very rapidly, try something silly here -- see how fast you can blink and waggle your tongue! -- or blink twenty times while I count very fast! I wish you good luck with it. Forcing medical treatment on small, frightened and surprisingly strong little people is one of my least favorite activities.

Jaywalker said...

Fat Controller, that is simply amazing advice. Wow! Also, Nimble, that is a very cunning strategy indeed. Thank you both so much. The internet is amazing. So are you.

Peevish - reproachful eyes sounds like a lesser known Kris Kristofersson song,no? Mediless no longer, thank Nathan.

Belette - of course, as a long term reader, you will recall this is the child with the penchant for tongue kissing me.. Off to look up "freudian exclamations and curses" on google.

Katyboo - that's quite a vision, but I can't imagine stroking his eyes would be very well-received. I am wondering about feasibility of midnight raid.

Jane - the boiled salt water has been our compromise solution this evening. It has stopped the wailing which had become my main, nay sole, priority. It makes you feel way worse when they are so sweet and forgiving, doesn't it?

Pochyemu - can I sleep on your floor? I promise only to moan quietly..

Woman - sadly the CFO is in a hotel in Marble Arch. He has been as supportive as the phone line and many hundreds of miles allow. He is catching up on sleep so I can just die in a corner properly on his return and he can take over eyedrop 101!

Completely Alienne said...

When in doubt I always resorted to bribery - isn't there some kind of hideously expensive chocolate/ice cream they like?

It is probably no consolation at the moment but I promise you that they will grow out of the repetitive phase eventually. It is usually replaced by something equally awful (like the looking down your nose at your stupid mother phase) but that is a lot less wearing and easier to ignore. Especially when you are all ill.

Z said...

It'll clear up in the end and he won't go blind. Do your best but don't beat yourself up about it. Kids are impossible. If you say you don't care, he'll probably beg you to put the drops in.

Yes, my children hated me. Now they think I'm wonderful. They're grateful for the slightest smile.

Red Rum said...

Also VERY impressed by Nimble's advice which I will be pinching too. Fab! Take heart, there really is NOTHING worse than sick kids but it'll all seem a lot better once we get closer to spring. Also, keep meaning to tell you - my inlaws live in Belgium, too!!! SO next time I have to visit them, we MUST meet! Oh yes and Q threatened to call the police today if I didn't stop being horrible...RRx

Pochyemu said...

Yes, darling, you know you've only to ask! We'll black out the windows in the spare room and make you a soft little nest of feather duvets, with an all-you-can-eat buffet of Nytol, cups of tea, and bottles of Evian. Then, when you're well, you can return to the wilds of Belgium. Or not. You know, whatever!

Pearl said...

Oh, how I feel for you!

The method of putting the drops in the corner of the eyes and then rapidly blinking is the way to go. Trust me.

I wish you sleep and silence.


Lisa said...

We've used Nimble's idea with much success. Fingers crossed for you. I've decided that I won't send peanuts, coke and prostitutes to the CFO. Rather, I'll send Nurofen, chocolate and a nurse to you. I'm sure the CFO will understand.

SUEB0B said...

My dog is half greyhound, and she cowers in terror if I as much as swear around her. It is uncanny.

Eyedrops? I'm no parent-type person, but my Sunday school kids always respond well to "Don't make me get out the duct tape." Of course you have to have the right expression to carry it off.

Jaywalker said...

CA - this would normally be my approach but he even refused a packet of Pokémon cards per application. Clearly the drops are reeallly bad.
As for the death angst, I have a lot of sympathy. He's like a tiny version of me, except he externalises it! Sigh.

Z - I even tried that. We got into this tango where he would say 'ok, you can do it' then when I came towards him armed he would retract. Gah. Must cultivate indifference.

RR- really? I am always astonished to hear that anyone else lives in Belgium! Yes. Of course, we totally must. It is the size of a pocket hankerchief, so can easily meet up.

Pearl - I think today will be better. I demand it! Thank you for being lovely.

Lisa - ooh, yes please. He has promised to have lots of sleep so he can help when he gets back with the five am existential crises.

SueBoB - Right. I am totally trying it. What tone do you recommend? Jack Nicholson? Margaret Thatcher? Anthony Hopkins?

Jane Henry said...

Jaywalker, hope the eyes a bit better today! My offspring also respond better to their papa, but it helps that he is a dentist so semi medically trained - used to getting unwilling little tykes to sit still and do things they don't want to anyway.

I have come to the conclusion that Guilt and Motherhood go hand in hand and we just have to live with it. Thankfully you have to be a pretty rubbish parent before your offspring totally give up on you. Although like Complete Alienne I have two who are at the looking down their nose at their mother phase. My husband and I hit on a brilliant revenge strategy in the summer though. If any of your offspring are misbehaving/being annoying in public, snog each other. Guaranteed to make them do what they are told! Our children are still recovering from the shock...
May I post marmoset on my blog Jaywalker? It's so much fun.

Jaywalker said...

Jane - Of course you can! Spread the marmoset. The world needs it.

I waver between guilt and wanting to truss them up in some of SueBob's duct tape. I try to tell myself this is normal.

Jane Henry said...

Perfectly normal. No mother would be complete without her duct tape!

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