Last night my husband (Tech Support) set up her brand new email. It had been a long day for me, driving here, there and everywhere, and I didn't really get to look at my email until 11Pm. Sierra had sent me the following email:
to YouSorry I couldn't say this to you in person........ I was just too scared. I by accident stuck a bean in my ear........... Please don't be mad.:'(
Now, I'm a homeschooler, I'm a mom. My thought process went something like this...
Hm. This is well written. Did Sierra really write it? Could it be spam? How can I get spam from her email address already? It must be a joke. Why would she think I would be mad? How can anyone get a bean stuck in their ear?
I get up to find her. She is watching me with that guilty look I know so well.
Me: Did you really put a bean in your ear?
Me: Why would you do that?
I find the flashlight and try to maneuver it while I look in her ear. We had been using black beans as counters for various math games. I didn't think they could possibly be small enough to fit in an ear. To be honest, I didn't think my eight year old would consider trying to stick a bean in her ear. But here we are. I scan her ear, and hand Chase the flashlight so I can hold her ear open enough to look deeper. I can't see anything bean-like. I ask if she's sure it got in her ear and didn't fall off onto the couch. She's unsure. I start moving blanket throws around and find various black beans. I hold them up like a police line-up. "Is this your bean?" No. "Is this your bean?" No. "Is this your bean?" Not sure. Maybe.
I decide I should at least look in the other ear for contrast. As far as I can tell, they both look the same to me. But now Sierra isn't sure which ear she put the bean into.
Me: How can you be unsure?
Sierra: I didn't do it today.
Me: Well, when did you do it?
Sierra: Two or three days ago.
I try to remain calm, but I'm teetering between annoyance and the urge to burst out in laughter at how surreal my life is. My husband and I explain how serious this could be, since you don't want to do anything that might damage the ear. My husband calls the doctor to see if we need to make a midnight run to the ER or if it can wait until morning. I imagine possible House, M.D. scenarios where my daughter is convulsing before Dr. House realizes the problem is a bean in her ear. The doctor decided we could wait until morning and come in to have the ear checked.
Incidentally, after she went to bed I showed her father and Marina the email. Marina mentioned that Sierra had asked her how to spell "by accident." She asked whether there was a space. She didn't know if it was one word or two. It may have been inappropriate, but we all ended up laughing until we couldn't breathe. I guess I should be happy that my youngest now has this new way to communicate with me. Considering all of our past adventures with Sierra--putting antiseptic gel on her tongue at two (call to poison control), unscrewing the safety cap on her brother's asthma meds and taking several (that was the second call to poison control that week), eating several bottles worth of homeopathic remedies (should have hid them better), hiding in our car and covered in scribbles at five (that one involved a call to the police)--a bean in the ear seems like...small potatoes.
And there was, indeed, a bean in her ear. The doctor managed to pull it out with a tiny scoop tool. Sierra is fine, and allowed me to write up the experience. The reason I couldn't see it is because it had turned white. I suppose I would have eventually noticed it sprouting out her ear.