The Girl Who Cried Wolf…or Sick

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We all know the story of the boy who cried wolf. Well…most of us do. Some little boy is supposed to sit around all day and watch some sheep. Being a little boy, and being that is one of the most tedious chores I have ever heard of, he livens things up by randomly calling “Wolf!” so all the townspeople come running. He does it so much, however, that when a real wolf comes no one responds to his calls and the wolf eats everyone…or something like that. Moral of the story probably has something to do with honesty and such.
My daughter has become that little boy. She has discovered the glorious things that happens when she is sick. She gets to watch more TV, have special treats, special dinners at her request…the world is her oyster. (I have often wondered where that phrase even comes from) She is a fairly intelligent five year old, so she figures it would be even more awesome to experience all that when she’s well enough to enjoy it. Let me tell you, this girl could win an Oscar. A well placed sigh, a slight whimper and grabbing her stomach. She doesn’t overdo it. Just enough to get me worried. I have fallen for it dozens of times. Magically she is always cured when it’s time to do something she wants to…like go to the park, or church, or things that require health. But each time she plays this up I think in the back of my mind, “If I ignore this…it will be the one time she’s actually sick.” Sure enough, the day after we get back from that ridiculously long vacation she starts wailing every thirty minutes about her ear. I ignore her. Now, in my defense, I was exhausted and barely functional. She would always start with her ear, but than randomly change to other body parts…her head, her stomach, her bottom. It was Friday afternoon and our doctor’s office was closed until Monday…meaning that a checkup would cost 45 dollars instead of 15. All this caused me to ignore her…for the first 24 hours. But after a sleepless night I finally went in to the Urgent Care. Sure enough…she had an ear infection.
So, there you have it. Murphy’s Law: if you ignore your kid’s complaints, it will be the first time out of a thousand that it was legitimate and you will feel awful for months to come.

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