Her price? $4.97.

We have long been challenged by the  tendency of Grace to feel ill.  She has had a long running love of the School Nurse. Any school.  Any nurse.  She and I have had many a discussion on why she can’t stay in class, and why she must have the nurse call me at all hours of the day.

We get calls for bumps and bruises and stinging gums.  We have had to pick her up countless times for stomach aches of unknown origin. And over flossing.  And just plain old annoying her teacher so much they can’t take it any more. 

I am, unfortunately, not the best mom for this.  I go to work no matter what is wrong with me, and always have.  My mother had to force me to stay home from school, and I would do anything to trick her into letting me go to school in spite of my illnesses.  I have, on more than one occasion, driven to work and pulled over every few miles to be sick on the side of the freeway, just so I could still go to work (o.k. I had lots of work to do, to be fair).  My patience for the fake sick?  REALLY low.

This makes me less than nurturing at times, and honestly I try.  I try and apply sympathy, and love, and mint tea with toast on all these occasions, but I do lose my patience with it sometimes. 

Tuesday.  Ball Park.  Just sitting down with the first beer of the day and BRINGGG BRINNGG.  School Nurse calling!  She is a new nurse, and as always the call starts like this:

SN:    I have Grace here in my office, and she is complaining that her stomach is hurting her.
Me:    Really?  Is she okay?  Does she seem sick?

But this is where things got interesting, because they have NEVER taken this turn:

SN:    She doesn’t have a fever, and I think she is faking it.
Me:    What?!??
SN:    Well, I think she is fine, so I keep sending her back to class, but in case she comes home and tells you I didn’t help her, I wanted to tell you why.
Me:    You are my new BFF!  Thanks!  See ya later, after the ball game!

Next day. BRINGGG BRINNGG. School Nurse calling!

SN:    I have Grace here in my office, and she is complaining that her stomach is hurting her.
Me:    Really?  Is she okay?  Does she seem sick?
SN:    I am sending her back to class.  I think she is faking.
Me, after long talk with Grace:  Can you give her Tylenol and send her back to class?
SN:    No.  Because she is fine.  I am just sending her back to class.
Me:    Can you give her a Placebo?  Of any kind?  Just so I can stay at work?
SN:    I will think of something…

That night I asked Grace if she felt better, and she told me the SN had her breathe water.  AWESOME.  It made her feel better.  I then asked what one thing, ANY thing I could do so she would not go to the nurse on Thursday.

And she knew.  She wanted a U of A Wildcats T shirt.  And she wanted me to call and check with the nurse, just in case it was too hard to stay away.

I called, no Grace in the SN’s office.  Price of the U of A T shirt $4.97.  A lifetime of knowing Grace’s price?  Priceless.

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3 Responses to Her price? $4.97.

  1. jennie says:

    some people might call that “bribery”, jenine. but I prefer to think of it as “earning”.p.s. “breathing water” – please thank the nurse for that one, I’ll definitely be using it.

  2. Shelee says:

    I love that school nurse for you. She’s my new hero. That is awesome!

  3. Jillian says:

    What a little squirt! I really thought she would grow out of the whole nurse thing. And what a rock star the new nurse is, doesn’t make you feel like a bad mom at all!!! Hope all is well!

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