Monday, November 30, 2009

The Downside of Drama, Take Two (Hundred Million)

Before her third person was fully realized, the Matron mentioned a couple of times that Scarlett's theatrics occasionally extend to the home front.

This morning, the Evil Head Cold offered Scarlett a new role. She wailed. She railed. Clutched a box of Kleenex and staggered like Oliver Twist after a cracker. Tears rolled aplenty!

Scarlett: "I AM TOO SICK TO GO TO SCHOOL!!!!!!"

The Matron duly felt the forehead.

Now, the Matron and her husband both mostly work from home. She is teaching entirely online this semester (and loves it). They are big believers in staying home from school - not only if you are sick, but if you need the mental health day.

However, the Matron favors a straightforward approach to both avenues for absence: the child requests the mental health day (they get two a year) or the child is genuinely sick. Scarlett was firmly headed in the direction of Illness Avenue.

Yet . . . . so much suffering for what appeared to be a stuffy nose and some sniffles? Could she really be so sick? Was this real or . . . acting? If she's really this unwell, oh my, she should be in bed and quite possibly the HOSPITAL. . but? There were real tears but she's seen those more than once on a stage . . . what to do? what to do?!

The Matron squinted and studied her child's every move in an attempt to discern what was disease and what was drama.

Squint, squint, squint.

In the end, she finally decided to send the child to school (partly to end the screaming). So uncertain was she of her decision that she emailed Scarlett's teacher, described the situation and asked the teacher to assess: is Scarlett really sick? If so, the Matron would come and retrieve her immediately.

She will either be picking up her daughter soon or handing Scarlett the Oscar.


jenn said...

Ah, yes. I'm very, very familiar with the Drama Illness... my daughter is a consummate performer in the categories of sniffles, reeling from lightheadedness, and inability to speak due to sore throat (all of which manage to disappear once she is ensconced on the couch in front of the TV).

unmitigated me said...

It's never to early to shoot for the Oscar.

Jenny Grace said...

My son is discovering his knack for dramatic interpretations. I think often of your Scarlett. I hope he ends up a lousy actor, but so far it's not looking so good.

Cheri @ Blog This Mom!® said...

The Oscar is inevitable, it's merely a matter of time.


Minnesota Matron said...

Teacher to Matron: Scarlett seems fine. Was she sick this morning?

Anonymous said...

#1 son tried the I'm-too-sick-to-go-to-school thing when he was in about 2nd grade. But he made the unfortunate mistake of leaping out of bed and heading off to play with Legos right after I made the phone call to the school. Needless to say, he shortly thereafter found himself at school.

I'm sure Scarlett is much too smart (or too sick) to ever do that ;^)

Deb said...

I have to say, my first thought when you said the tears was, "first period". I don't know exactly how old she is, but that's how we finally figured out what was going on with my daughter. Ah, the drama, the crying. She'd lie there and cry, "I don't even know what I'm crying about!"

I could be way off base on this, of course.

Susan said...

Yes, we have been there, too. I think motherly instincts rarey fail.

MJ said...

Bravo, Scarlett, bravo! You will win an Oscar! If your mother isn't in the know on illness & needs to email the teacher, that Oscar is just beyond your grasp!

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

When my children were younger I headed off the fake illness with the "you must stay in bed rule."

If you're really sick you don't care; if you're not sick that's not much fun.

I'm glad to see your ruling was vindicated by the teacher.