For some reason, I've recently been reminded of a story my mother-in-law told me at least twenty years ago. As a mother of three, I'm well aware of the ridiculous things that can happen in a household with children.
My husband, Dale, was a stolid, practical man, ungiven to flights of spontaneous fancy, so I remember thinking how far-fetched this story sounded, but I guess even the most serious individuals have to start out as children and learn about life the hard way.
One of the familiar lessons for children is--"Don't stick foreign objects up your nose!"
I don't remember ever doing this, as a child, but all of my children did it, and, according to his mother, so did my husband.
"He came home from school with his nose all swollen and stopped up," she said. "It got so bad that we had to take him to the doctor, who said, 'Son, did you stick a bean up your nose?'"
No, he said he had not.
The situation got worse, and his mother questioned him again, "Did you stick a bean up your nose?"
No, he didn't.
For several days, everyone continued to ask him about the bean.
Finally, he sneezed. His mother saw something red, and thought, "Oh, no! It's blood!"
However, on closer inspection, she realized that the red discharge had a waxy quality.
Have you guessed it yet?
Yes, her son had been sitting at his school desk and had absent-mindedly pushed a red crayon up his nose. Of course, any attempts to retrieve it only resulted in pushing it up farther--and he was too embarrassed to tell the teacher what he had done. When he was asked about the bean, he was being honest!
My oldest child was about four or five, when he sat on the floor in front of the TV and put an unpopped popcorn kernel up his nose. I saw him do it and was appalled! Fortunately, Advance had a doctor, so I whipped up my son and took him to the Masters' clinic, where the good doctor merely took a cute little stainless steel spoon and flipped the corn kernel out. He didn't even charge me anything.
My second son was more creative. He gathered up the pea-sized yellow pellets from his older brother's toy pellet gun and stuffed those into his nose. By that time, I was gaining more experience and confidence, so I tipped him up and removed the little yellow balls with a pair of tweezers.
The tweezers came in handy on my third child, who developed a strange penchant for stuffing her nose with raisins. This time, her brothers had the pleasure of "ratting her out."
"Mom!" they would yell. "Kristin put raisins up her nose again!!"
I would snatch her up, grab the flashlight and tweezers, take her to the kitchen, plop her down on the butcher black table, and proceed to pick the raisins out of her nose. Unfortunately, if you've ever looked inside someone's nose, you know that the entire lining looks like raisins, so it's difficult to know when you've grabbed a raisin--or a piece of their nose. A scream from the child is necessary to determine the difference.
The boys found this activity quite entertaining, of course, and it was the highlight of their day, to be shared--first thing--when their father came in for dinner.
"Dad! Guess what? Kristin put raisins up her nose again!" they shouted in delight.
Oh, the many joys of parenthood!