No Laughing Matter

It hit all at once. I could tell because I had been staring at him. The medication they had injected into his IV wiped over Mitch and he began cracking up uncontrollably. His face was red from trying to hold it back. It was a weird contrast to the baby crying in the background. It was surreal watching him all out of control with his eyes glazed over. I think I would have laughed if it had been my husband, but seeing my almost 14 year old son wasted felt odd. I looked at my husband and he wasn’t laughing either. The nurse anesthetist came in grinning and said, “If he ever comes home acting like this, you’ll know what he’s been up to.”
I laughed lightly out of courtesy but I still felt very strange seeing my son like that. He was enjoying himself way too much for someone who was about to have catheters stuck into veins in each groin.


  1. It is interesting how it changes so much when it is a spouse vs. a child. I have not had to experience this yet.

    Your slice made me really think about substance abuse. Even though, obviously, in this scenario it was for a medical reason, it really brings up thoughts about how substances can change so much and so quickly. As you said, your son was enjoying himself to much considering what was to come.

    You captured this experience well. In a paragraph you got me thinking and will leave me with a lot to consider. I just finished reading Shine this weekend, so some of the themes are an interesting match to your post (

  2. That is totally how I felt. It was so weird and scary. I am probably sensitive to this issue because I have family members that have struggled with substance abuse. I appreciate your comment so much because I felt like my reaction to the situation was strange. Why should I be worried about subtance abuse when my kid is about to go through a medical procedure?

  3. Wow, what a thought! In the midst of an operation prep to take you somewhere else, I'm not sure that's correct behavior, are you?

  4. No, Bonnie, I don't think my response was correct. I guess that is why I wrote about it. I felt guilty about it. We had little babies with scars on their chests on either side of my son. My son's condition wasn't life threatening. I even felt guilty about that, watching these obviously devoted and brave parents care for their little ones. I guess the mind does weird things under stress. :)

  5. You have a way with words. I hope your son is okay.


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