I was sick last week. REALLY sick. I had strep throat. I will never secretly feel that my children should suck it up when they have strep throat. Because I thought I was actually going to die.
I'm not sure if it was a raging fever, the debilitating body aches, the excruciating headache, or the improbably painful throat that was the worst. It all sucked. REALLY sucked.
Anyway, at one point I realized that I was seriously sick. Not just I-feel-like-shit-I-should-take-some-Tylenol sick, but holy-fuck-I-feel-like-hot-ass sick. I dragged my haggard, feverish, miserable ass to CVS to the Minute.Clinic. As a testament to how desperate I was to seek medical attention, I took both of my kids with me.
This is a nightmare by any standards as they, for some inexplicable reason, think CVS is The Most Fun Place Ever. They get all revved up and start running up and down the aisles screeching like prehistoric birds. It's really quite embarrassing. They are fairly well-behaved for the most part but CVS makes them lose their tiny, tiny minds.
Megan shops endlessly for nail polish is ghastly shades of LIME! GREEN! and SHOCKING! PINK! and nasty glittery dark purple and whatnot. Then she shrieks and squeals with glee like she's just found a brand new Coach purse lying unattended on our front porch or something.
Liam heads straight for the sunglasses and rips every goddamn one of them off the rack to try them on. That, in and of itself, wouldn't be so bad except that he can't move on to the next pair until he seeks out someone (only a stranger will do) to show off how smokin' hot he surely must think he looks. In each and every pair.
I hate CVS.
Anyway, no one else was waiting in line at the clinic so I thought we'd be in and out of there in no time at all. In a jiffy! Toot sweet!
Not so much.
The exam itself took about 20 minutes, but most of that was spent waiting for the flu test to come back negative. The Nurse Practitioner who was helping me was plenty nice and all, but my kids had just about had enough of that little tiny room after, oh I don't know, about 3.4 minutes.
It was hellish. To begin with, Megan produces a steady, never ending, continuous, mind-numbing stream of conversation. "Am I being good? I am being good, aren't I? Will I get a treat for being so good? What will my treat be? Candy? Will I have to share it with Liam? I don't mind sharing but it might change what I would want to get for my treat. Something with a lot of pieces, you know. Maybe it won't be candy, maybe it will be a toy. If it is a toy, do I have to share it with Liam? I don't mind sharing but it might change which toy I get. What is this thing? Can I touch it? Why is she sticking that huge q-tip up your nose? It looks like it hurts, does it hurt? I hurt my toe today. Want to see it? Can I get my candy yet? Am I being good enough to get candy? Want to hear the song I learned from Ms. Betty at school? Can I get a Slurpee after dinner tonight since I'm being so good? I think I hear your phone ringing. Is your phone ringing? I'll get it for you, Mommy because I'm being really helpful. Will you tell Daddy how good I am being? When do you think we will be done in this room because I really want a treat. Can I get a new Zhu Zhu pet today? I don't want that as my treat, I'm just asking if I can have a new one. I like the pink one. I think it's name is Jilly. Mary Grace has the black one. She also has cool sneakers that light up. Can I get some sneakers that light up? Why is Liam crying? Why are you sweating? Can I help you with anything? Because I'm really helpful, you know."
I wish I was kidding, but that's what it's like all. the. time. I read an article today that called Kindergartners "chatterboxes." Some shit about how they are testing out their verbal prowess, building their vocabularies, learning to express their emotions, and all that happy shit. All I know is that we spend a lot of time lately playing The Quiet Game. It ends in the awarding of a pink Starburst candy and I don't even care that I've effectively bought her silence with sugar. I just don't care. Because my ears will start bleeding otherwise.
But I digress... so Megan is going on and on and on and on. Liam is climbing up and down and up and down and up and down and up and down on everything he can find. He's also trying to rip the glasses off my face, pull plugs out of electrical outlets, play with the NP's phone, open the door, and empty my purse while wailing about GUUUUUUUUUUUUUM! He's so freaking busy and so freaking fast that it's like all of these things are happening simultaneously. It's like he's a cartoon character who has somehow cloned himself and is capable of mischief in 5 different locations at exactly the same time. I wish I was exaggerating.
Anyway, we finally get out of that room and go back to wait for my prescriptions to be filled. (Side note: I want to marry the person who invented penicillin.) For whatever reason (because someone was HATING me that day), it takes for.fucking.ever for my prescriptions to get done. Again my children are running amok, Megan is blathering on about nail polish, and Liam craps his pants. I am a raging idiot because I, in my fevered delirium, neglected to bring any diapers or wipes. Because OF COURSE he's going to shit himself.
So I buy diapers and wipes at 400% of what I should pay for them and head off to the employee-only bathroom. Guess what they don't have in that bathroom. A changing table. So here's what we do... I wrestle Liam into a headlock, take his pants off, and gently lay them on the floor. I attempt to place his head on the pants so I can change his diaper. He decides that this is A TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE or something equally as shocking, and bucks like a horse on an LSD trip. Megan's commentary has started, "Mommy, why don't they having any place to change diapers in here? That's not very convenient, is it? Do you need some help? Because you know I'm helpful, right? Want me to hold him down? What is that smell? Is that his poop? Because wow, Mom, that smells really bad. Liam, buddy, what did you eat today? Mom, did my poop smell that bad? I hope when I have kids they don't have smelly poop like this. They should have air fresheners in here." and on and on and on. You get the point.
I actually missed half of it because Liam was screaming his fool head off and I was openly weeping. Did I forget to mention that my temperature was 101.8 at the time? I was 99 shades of miserable and these crazed little nutjobs that I stupidly brought with me are about to push me right into hysteria.
This all goes on for a long, long time since it took them almost 40 minutes to fill my prescription. In that time, Liam managed to bite through the packaging of 2 different chocolate bars and Megan somehow got her arm stuck in the cuff of the free blood pressure screening machine. We were something to see, people. Yes, we were.
I finally got them the hell out of there and out to the car. Liam was freaking because he didn't want to leave. He never wants to leave. It's CVS, for chrissakes, and he would live there if I let him. Plus he now morphs into devilspawn when it's time to get strapped into the car seat. It's like the cloth cover has been lit on fire or something, the way he thrashes and wails. I manage to break his perfect plank position in order to get his obnoxious ass into the car seat, and then get Megan strapped in. I am literally sweating, my teeth are chattering, and I'm feeling lightheaded.
I turn on the car and notice that it's 6:30 which is dinner time. Hello, McD's. My kids are thrilled. I think we are in the home stretch until we get about half a mile from CVS and Megan sweetly says from the back seat, "Oh Mommmmmmmmmmy, loooooooooooooooook." I turn around to see a huge smile across her beaming, beautiful face. I realize all might be right in the world after all. And then I notice what she's holding up for me to look at.
She has stolen a bottle of nail polish.
I shit you not. So I have to drive our asses back to the store. Unstrap everyone. Drag us back in there. Make her apologize. Find out where, in the vast ocean of the nail polish section, this stupid fucking bottle of polish goes. Try to get out of there. Liam freaks out when he realizes we are leaving. He thrashes about and hits me in the face. Twice. I can't tell if it's on purpose or not, but I make him sit in a time out anyway. On the floor. The dirty floor. In CVS.
I sat next to him and cried. Megan rubbed my back and chattered away incessantly, cooing apologies and platitudes in my ear. What a sweet little thief.
Finally we get back out to the car and I get to go through the hell that is strapping Liam in. I get McD's for the kids. We go home.
Alas, I did not die. And I feel much better now. Want to know what's insane? I've typed all of this nonsense and haven't even gotten to my point yet. Hmmmm, now where do we think that Megan might, maybe, perhaps have gotten this personality disorder of the talking, talking, talking. Huh?
The message in the title of this post (remember it, waaaaaaaaaay back up at the top) was that even as sick as I was, I still managed to find a way to act like a deranged infertile... If you've never seen a strep test up close, it's a test strip. A whole helluva lot like a pregnancy test. The idea is that you have a control line and, if the test is positive, a 2nd test line that shows up next to it. EXACTLY like a pregnancy test.
When I saw that test strip, I felt a little faint. I became desperate, praying to the Test Strip Gods that we would see a 2nd line. Now, I ask you, who in the hell WANTS to have strep throat? What person needs to see a 2nd line on a test strip so badly that they use their mindskillz to WILL a 2nd line to show up? A crazy-assed infertile, that's who.
All I can say is that I bet that lady never saw someone so enthusiastic and pleased over a positive strep test. If you thought I couldn't get any whackier, then get this... I asked her if I could take the test strip home. Luckily she said no because, really, that would have been just too much.
I'm going to choose to blame it on the fever.
And for what it's worth, I'm also going to chose to stay the hell away from CVS until my children are in high school. They can't be trusted to act like normal human beings in there. Nevermind that I was spewing step virus everywhere, visibly crying, and eventually sitting in the middle of the aisle with my son in a time out. It's because of THEM that I will never show my face at that CVS again.