I read this article about how adults see things and how kids see things. For instance: we see a nice, friendly looking doctor.
Our kids see:
On Tuesday, Joshua starts to feel under the weather. I think, oh, it's allergies. I treat him with some essential oils. He gets worse as the day goes on. That night he was so out of it, he was sitting up in bed, asleep, and coughing and his fever is rising. I give him some Tylenol and some cough syrup, treat him with some oils again and he goes back to sleep. Wednesday rolls around and he's complaining of his throat, so I take him in to see the doctor. Strep throat. They prescribe some Zithromax and we go on our way.
Thursday morning Joshua was feeling a lot better and so he was playing in the backyard. He comes in and he looks like he had mosquito bites under his eyes. He is still kind of coughing, but not bad. I gave him some more Benedryl and the bites/hives go away. Later that day we were running some errands, including taking Simeon to the doctor because he had Strep Throat too. I happen to look over at Joshua as we were finishing another errand and his eyes are swelling and he's coughing and wheezing. Instantly, that mother's intuition kicks in...something is very wrong.
We rush to the Emergency Room. By now his eyes are swelling shut and he was wheezing even more. Everyone agrees it is an allergic reaction to Zithromax and so they call for an epinephrine shot, Benedryl and something for his stomach since he started complaining his stomach hurt. I haven't had much luck getting my kids to swallow pills until about the age of 7-8. Josh is just 5, but they thought he would be able to swallow these pills with a Sprite. It wasn't going to happen, so the nurse thought she would hide the crushed up pill in chocolate pudding, serve it up and let him drink Sprite right after. This completely backfired. With his throat still raw and sore from the Strep, the soda burned, the pudding was bitter, and mixed together they fizzed up. Joshua gagged, all of it came back up and out, down his front, and all over the blanket they gave him. They tried again, managed to get it down this time and then rolled him over for the shot in the rear. Poor Joshua! I could see why he did not see them as the friendly medical staff and saw them as executioners. The shot did work and the swelling in his throat started to go down and he stopped coughing so much. By bedtime the hives that were covering his entire body were mostly gone. Sick and disgruntled, he complained to Curtis when we got home, "I got a shot. They put salt in my pudding!! I'm never eating pudding again!"
On Friday we had a follow up appointment for Joshua who seemed to be doing just fine with the Zithromax out of his system. Again he complained to the doctor about salt in his pudding and getting a shot, and looking at this doctor with eyes of suspicion making sure she didn't have any needles before she came near him.
This got me thinking about some of the other things my kids observe or try to communicate back to me.
Dill on the green beans is met with, "Why is there grass all over the food?". Bumps in the road that make the van rattle are met with, "Mom! Mom! The van is out of gas!".
Yesterday I found a stuffed penguin on my closet shelf. Simeon has such a collection now that I figured the other kids hid one from him and here I had found it. Simeon walks in, I had him the penguin and he asks, "Who's is this?" I looked at him for a moment, then replied, "It's your's. You got it for your birthday." He replied, "I did?! Wow!! He's so cute!". Then I got confused. Surely he's seen this penguin before. He knows them all and he can usually keep track of them. Why was he so excited about this one? ....Think..........think..........doh!!!! He hasn't seen this penguin before because it was for his birthday which is NEXT week!!! Happy Birthday Simeon! Enjoy that penguin I was trying to hide for another week from you. FAIL on Mom's part.
One day we left the house and Isaac and Jesse and I started in on a conversation about our homeschool topic of the week: Indian tribes. I asked and answered questions, and then out of the blue, Jesse says, "Yeah, like how cannon balls eat their babies." What? You could have heard a pin drop. We had no idea what he was talking about. After a few minutes of questioning and describing, I figured out he was talking about cannibals, and then quickly corrected him that I didn't think they at their own babies. At least, I hope not. I hope cannibals don't eat other babies. Why are there cannibals?
Then tonight. Isaac is not a very good speller and he tries to use the spell check when he's typing, but that still sometimes throws some things at him that he just can't quite get. I get on Facebook and I'm scrolling down through the new posts of the day and here is one from Isaac. "I wish I could play sports. I don't like doing nothing. Incest on Wednesdays." WHAT!??! I scroll down some more. I see he put "Eye exam today." I try to figure out what he was trying to say..."instead of Wednesday eye exams?"...."except for activities on Wednesdays?".....But all I could see was the word incest and then, "Oh my gosh...who else read this?!" I go get him and have him translate for me. Exasperated he says, "I wish I could play sports except (not incest) for when I have Scouts on Wednesdays." Thank you, Autocorrect, or Auto Suggestion. How do you get incest out of except? I deleted the comment and just left his comment for the day about an eye exam. Then I had to explain what incest meant after our discussion. After he thought about it for a few minutes he comes back and asks me, "Why would anyone commit incest? That sounds really gross."
Sometimes, I feel like everything is a mine field. You just can't say anything without there always being a second (often times offensive) meaning. Is it necessary he know what that is? I mean, we are studying a time period in which it was common for relatives to marry relatives to keep the royal hierarchy going, and we did study some genetic diseases that come from relatives having children with other relatives so it wasn't an unfamiliar definition, just I hadn't used that word before. Why do we have to have so many words in the English vocabulary? We have one word to describe Love, and yet there are so many different meanings for love. Other languages have different words for different kinds of love. I could say, "I love chocolate" and "I love my son" and it has the same meaning, essentially. Trying to teach the English language to our kids is even more confusing what with the synonyms and acronyms and homophones. No wonder Isaac has problems keeping it all straight. Anyway, the crisis was averted and we have all moved on.
I still find it funny to listen to my kids talk. Three of them have speech delays so it is funny to me to listen to them as they figure stuff out. All last summer Ammon pronounced "frog" as "fock". Sometimes it sounded a little more off and came out as the f-word, to which we would all gasp and try to correct as quickly as possible. He would just give us this look like, "What's your problem? I was just talking about this frog!" Of all the words Ammon picked up on, dead was one of his favorites. If the cat was sleeping, "Kitty dead?" or if something fell over he'd ask if it was dead.
So, that's my life lately: laughing at my kids over some of the conversations we have, trying to follow Simeon in one of his many tirades on penguins, dinosaur eggs or things he is mimicking off of TV, and calming children down when there are no words in their vocabulary to describe what they are seeing. It really makes it difficult to talk to someone with a normal vocabulary later because I'm almost always asking, "What? Could you say that again?", because it's not in kid-speak.