Every afternoon, when I pick Thing 2 up from school, I ask him, “What was something awesome that happened at school today?” And every day — one hundred percent of the time –– that little man tells me something that happened at recess. In his world, AWESOME can’t happen at school, if it’s not happening on the playground, because WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE WHO MAKE ME SIT STILL AND READ WORDS?!
Today was no different. He loaded up into the car in the school parking lot, and chucked his backpack and lunchbox into the back, with nary a care in the world as to what homework assignments he might be bending up. I got into the driver’s seat and asked, “What was something awesome that happened today?”
And he replied, “Well… at recess today I found a tube of Chapstick, and it was practically brand new.”
Do you know that sinking feeling mother’s get in the pits of their stomachs, when their sons are drafted for war? It also happens at times like these, when they have potentially been exposed to germs. You can bet your very last dollar that the sound that I emitted was a SCREECH, as I asked, “YOU DIDN’T USE IT, DID YOU??!!”
But, in my heart, I already knew.
Thing 2 said, “Well… I… um… I SMELLED it, Mom. I smelled it for a long time, and it smelled delicious. It smelled like a milkshake. And don’t even worry, because I looked at it really good, and it was a CLEAN tube of Chapstick.”
And I screeched again, “Did… you… USE IT???!!! DIDYOUUSEIT, DIDYOUUSEIT, DIDYOUUSEIT???!!!!!!”
“Just a little, Mom. But remember? I said it was CLEAN!”
I don’t know why tranquilizers for mothers during the parenting years aren’t sold as over-the-counter products. I would have bought THREE of them this afternoon, because YES! My kid used a CLEAN Chapstick that he found on the playground, that smelled like delicious milkshakes!
Once I recovered from the shock of that, we had a snack… and then we went to Thing 2’s soccer game.
The wind blew at hurricane levels, even though we are not in hurricane territory. It was a biting wind, that let us know that our four days of glorious fall weather could break at any moment and turn into a raging blizzard, the likes of which even the residents at the senior center can’t remember ever seeing before. The thing about Small Town is that we have six days of spring, followed by a blistering summer, and then we have five days of fall, which is chased off by the onset of winter, winter, winter.
And all that cold winter blowing in will probably end up chapping our lips, but listen! I know where there’s a perfectly CLEAN tube of Chapstick.
And the bonus? It smells just like delicious milkshakes!