Saturday, January 12, 2008

Wherein We Are Still Sick And Still Have Mice

Okay, so after another sleepless night spent with a coughing child, I staggered out of bed (out of couch, really) and showered and got dressed up. Why? Because I finally had a doctor's appointment for Rachel. Yes, the exciting day had arrived, and I wanted to be prepared.

Let's face it - when the doctors see short, slightly rotund me come in dressed in unstylish jeans, they peg me as a SAHM frump. So I pulled on my power outfit (complete with 2-inch heels, which put me just over 5 feet) and Talbot's wool coat (8 dollars at a local rummage sale) and took Rachel to her appointment. I even combed my hair. And I left all the other kids home, because if the doctor realizes that I homeschool, well, I'm a double-frump.

Wouldn't you know, this is the first pediatrician appointment I've gone to in aeons where the doctor or nurse has not called me "Mom"? Coincidence? I think not. And, the triage nurse asked me if I needed a note for work. Me - as if I were a real person. I didn't even know that adults needed notes for work. But I didn't let on. "No," I said coolly, "not necessary." I wanted to add that I was the person people had to bring notes to, but I didn't think I could pull it off.

So, the doctor was very nice and gave us the codeine syrup and warned me, "Now, you don't want to give this to her until bedtime, because it will knock her right out." Horrors. Rachel barely had her coat off at home before I got that stuff down her. She had a wonderful, 3-hour, blissfully-cough-free nap.

In the meantime I drove 45 minutes so Anna could pick up her flute from the repair shop. We live in a densely populated metropolitan area, so I have no idea why we had to drive all that way for a decent repair shop. I can't imagine what people in Nebraska or Wyoming have to do when a musical instrument needs fixing. Being sick myself, I felt like hell. I came home, went to bed, and let the house fall apart around me, as is its wont when I am not on duty.

I got up briefly later in the evening - just in time to hear Theo tell Larry that he had just seen a mouse in the family room. Larry said he'd take care of it later; but, upon hearing the hysterical noises emanating from his wife's mouth, he wisely readjusted his to-do list and put "catch mouse" at the very top. See? He loves me. Or maybe he just hates hysterical noises.

He couldn't find Theo's mouse last night, but a mouse did show up in the trap in our kitchen this morning. So, either we caught it (good), or our house is truly over-run with tiny little rodents that only look cute in nursery rhyme books (bad). Not being overly optimistic, Larry bought a whole bunch of mousetraps this morning, so we wouldn't run out while he goes away this week. It's not every husband who would think of such a caring gesture before he deserts his wife, now is it?


  1. One of our cats brought us the present of a mouse a couple of years ago. The little beastie bred copiously and we were over-run within weeks.

    I'm completely with you on the 'power dressing' for the experts, it really does make a huge different, and the jeans can do with the occasional wash anyways.

  2. We used a glue trap last night and caught a very FAT mouse. It had enjoyed my children's crumbs for quite some time. But the poor thing was out of its mind with fright. I will never use a glue trap again. Very inhumane. While I hate mice and like to see them instantly dead in a trap, I hate to see them terrified.

    Doctors are humans and make all the same dumb assumptions everyone else does. They also are not know-it-alls and parents/patients usually should trust their own intuition over what a doctor says.

    Way to empower yourself with the power outfit!

  3. I've never thought to dress up for a doctor's appointment but now that I know the reaction you can get, I think I'm going to be doing it from now on.

    Clearly, you are a professinal!

  4. I only have two girls I don't know how you can do it with all of those. Good luck

  5. You know that children's book, "Goodnight, Moon"? Well, my toddler looks for the mouse on every page...maybe you shouldn't read that book for a while.

    Also, since our local Home Depot and Lowes stores always seem to be short on staff, I have learned to dress nicely when I go there and, lo and behold!, every aisle I go down a worker appears at my side wanting to know if they can help me. If I go there in sweats, nada.

    Three cheers for codeine cough syrup! Don't doctors realize that sleeping well does wonders for the healing process? (and that includes Moms, too!)

    Hope you can get some rest tonight . . . mice notwithstanding!

    God bless!

  6. toni - jill (somewhere in the comments of one of the other mouse posts) warned all of us about those sticky traps! Now we are double-warned.

  7. I've been sleeping on that couch this past week and all I can say is the "sleep" is a freaking MISNOMER.

    Hope YOU'Re at least feeling better. Being as how you wouldn't want to have to miss work or anything! (Love the heels.)

  8. I hate mice. HATE. So creepy and disgusting.

    Let's hear it for prescription cough medicine. Hallelujah. Power outfit? Genius. Hope you are all feeling better.

  9. I will have to figure out how to power dress for all future appointments if only to get the illusion of service.

    When people ask if I work, I say, I certainly do. I'm a professional.

  10. Sick kids with six: oh my! My husband's aunt had 14 children and they each got the chicken pox contiguously, which meant something ridiculous like six months of chicken pox. Not one overlapped more than a couple of days.

    And, when I take my kids to the doc, I make a point of writing "Dr. Mary Petrie" on the forms. I am a doctor -- but a doctor of philosophy. Nonetheless, that tag makes them ask me about what I do and they don't call me 'mom' anymore.

    So strap on those heels, honey.

  11. Kills me that power dressing should have that much of an effect. Wow! I'll have to remember that.

    Hope that mouse was the last of its kind. Really. Especially if Larry is deserting you yet again (hope the PC issue have been resolved this time?)


  12. What did you set the traps with? I've heard peanut butter works, is that true? And will your husband be the one to remove the traps? That's got to be a gory task!

    Thanks for visiting my blog!

  13. Let's hope you've got the entire mouse family and no relatives are hiding out.

    I find the doctor scenario amusing. I'd love trying to dress up but they know me and would only laugh at my dementia. That's what I get for living in a small town.

  14. 1. LOVE codeine cough syrup.

    2. Dressing up really helps, doesn't it? You get so much more respect. Today I took a dress back to a department store that had a hole in it after I washed it once (kids' dress). I was dressed up, makeup, hair, the whole shebang. I had no receipt and no tags on the dress. They let me exchange it for a completely different dress because I asked nicely, and because, I assume, looked nice. My husband and I have gotten upgraded to first class before and other fun stuff like that.

    3. For coughing, try smearing Vicks Vaporub on the soles of your daughter's feet, and putting her to bed with socks on. Sounds weird, I know, and as much as I love medicating my children, this has actually worked for me, my cousin, and apparently a bunch of people on NPR.

  15. I had to deliver Andy's laptop to work a few weeks ago - I was originally on my way to the gym. I would only go as far as the lobby but still encountered a business casual woman who made me feel like the queen of frump. Good for you for dressing up.