Proud Moments That Are Only Amusing Later

February 19, 2010 by Rieshy

For Feel Good Friday at The Girl Next Door Grows Up I thought I'd share a memory that makes me laugh. I didn't remotely enjoy this story myself until I knew the outcome so... I have to begin with the end:
Our nurse came in the room and said, "Your son can go home now, his blood-work looks great, we don't have to administer the anti-venom, he's a healthy and very blessed boy."

Now for the beginning:

It was early Spring a few days after a tornado hit Nashville in 1998. I woke that morning and scraped my hair back in a messy ponytail and dressed in a pair of my husbands old levi's so that I could spread manure all over my yuppie, suburban, organic vegetable garden without ruining any of my clothes.

Note, my husband is over 6 foot tall, I am not. He also has size 34 inch waist, I do not. I ended up using a rope as a belt because the jeans wouldn't stay on and all my belts were too short. Yes, a rope. This will be important later.

I had envisioned my children joyfully helping with the manure spreading process. At the time I had a 7 yo, a 5 yo and a 3 yo. They helped long enough to get really dirty and then disappeared into the depths of the backyard. Probably to get away from the smell.

After a time I heard my 7 yo son crying, and looked up to see him coming towards me covered in leaves and holding his neck. After a brief struggle to prize his hand away from his neck I discovered two puncture wounds. Snake bite.

Mention snake bite, show a vampire wound, and your child pretty much gets fast-tracked in the E.R. Of course the term fast-track and hospital is an oxymoron. After the initial flurry of activity and I.V.s we were left to wait. My son was filthy. Leaf mould stuck to manure residue, stuck to normal messy 7 yo boy residue. He was scratching his head like a mad man. Watching him scratch his head made me scratch my messy, greasy ponytailed head.

When the nurses left I tried to get some of the worst of the manure off my shoes and jeans with a paper towel. I tied to neaten up my son and comb his hair. That's when I realized that not only were both of us covered in manure but my son had Head Lice. Arghhhhh!!

Right then the team of doctors walked in. Cool, educated, and led by a woman my age. She was sleekly coifed, wearing $400 shoes and expensive slacks under her white coat. She was surrounded by 3 other lesser doctor-beings. Their eyes all bulged slightly at the manure aroma. I think someone sent immediately for a translator; it being obvious that we would only be able to understand Hillbilly-ese.

By this time I knew my son was going to be fine so I had already mentally switched gears and was wondering how high our hospital bill was going to be and how soon I could go buy RID. Buuttt, to top it all off; as I was standing there willing my head to be itching for ordinary reasons, the lead doctor recognized me. We had gone to college together. She had been pre-med., I had been art history but we had both been in the honors program.

It was a proud moment-
Haven't you always wished to run into someone from your competitive past whilst covered in manure, wearing jeans held up by a rope, without make-up but with greasy hair, and accompanied by your child who is similarly stinky and has head lice?

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Heather McDougle said...

I'm glad your son ended up being fine. That would be a scary moment to see the snake bites. Also I would be embarrassed in the room running into someone I know but hey, it's a life of a mom. I'm sometimes a mess when I go out.

Anonymous said...

Isn't that the way it always happens...its the moments when you are at your worst when you run into people. Right after I had my son I was at the market and sure enough run into this girl whom was probably the last person I wanted to see. Long story short, I looked like crap (or like a mom who has a newborn and hadn't slept in a while)! Hadn't washed my hair, probably hadn't even cleaned my face...anyway, we finish up our nice gestures of how have you been, you look great and go our separate ways. As I turn the into the next aisle a stranger points out that I have baby puke on my shoulder and down my back! All I thought was GREAT!!! She is probably thinking WOW, she has gone downhill since high school. Oh Well.

Stepping On Cheerios said...

This story is so funny I almost chocked omy soup!

The Girl Next Door Grows Up said...

OH, It is called "Feel Good" Friday, not "Tell My Most Humiliating Story Ever" friday :-))

That has to be the single best story about running into someone in a nasty situation ever!!

Oh it is just so funny, I just can not stop smiling!!!!!!

I am going to forward this to my husband, he needs a good laugh right now. THANK YOU!!!!

Susan Tipton said...

Happiness Begins, Look on the bright side you must have looked good enough that the stranger assumed that the baby puke was new, or they wouldn't have mentioned it.

Susan Tipton said...

Girl Next Door- I only wish this was my most embarrassing moment. I'll have to repost "Just Shoot Me".

Stepping On Cheerios- I hope the soup wasn't chunky:)

Mama Zen said...

This is the best story ever! And, that's the only way I ever run into anyone from my competitive past. Where are they when I look good?

Bri said...

That's the way it always goes!

New follower from FFF at MBC :)

RivkA with a capital A said...

Loved this post.

Thanks for visiting my blog! I hope you'll stop by again!

Do you home school? (I don't, but I used to be a home-schooler-wanna be. Now I'm just a strong home-schooler-sympathizer!)

Anyway, as a SAHM for many years, I really relate to the feelings of inadequacy that can pop up when meeting peers with high power careers.

But I do not regret my choices. There isn't anything I would trade for all those wonderful moments with my kids! (of course, I would give away the not-so-wonderful moments, for free!)

Glad your son was ok! Do you know what kind of snake bit him?

Kelly said... your blog title! Hmm, coping skills, what are those? LOL!
Your blog was recommended by someone at Connect MEme Monday! So I'm here and I'm your newest follower!

Susan Tipton said...


I was hoping someone would tell me what coping skills were:)

Susan Tipton said...


I'm sure I'll be by- but luckily you don't have to worry about me asking for a cup of sugar.

I do home school. It's a lot of fun.

My son's blood chemistry peaked right above the level where they have to give anti-venom and then started dropping quickly on its own. They think it was a rattlesnake- but that it did not envenomate. A helpful doctor cheerfully told me that if the snake had injected venom my son would have been dead within minutes because of where the bite was on his neck.

Half my gray hairs date from that day:)

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