Mama’s Boy and the Neti Pot – Part 2

If you are just coming on board, you might want to read Part 1 of this topic before proceeding. It will explain the foundation of bad parenting, bribes, and clogged sinus passages, none of which you’ll get in this installment. This installment contains a great deal of spurting.

So AG had agreed to step in and be the neti pot guinea pig. He was grinning from ear to ear. I really have no idea why he agreed to this. I have to believe the hope of a new little lego pal was speaking to his soul. It’s hard to imagine that he’d flush his sinuses for less tangible things like love and sacrifice. I don’t mean that he’s not loving or sacrificial. He’s a fantastic brother. But he’s not one to mix his sinuses up in all that emotion. And he’s never been the first one to get a shot. But there was no sense in further questioning. I had a volunteer. I wasn’t going to turn this one away. AG marched up to the kitchen sink, getting slower and slower as the water warmed up. He was definitely getting cold feet, but was determined to carry through with it. I filled up the pot, tossed in the saline packet, and mixed it around. And much to my very great shock, he bent  his head and offered me a nostril.

This is really ridiculous. I can’t believe I’m telling a story with the phrase “offered me a nostril.” I should delete that. It’s totally within my power to stop this.

I’m not gonna.

Within a few seconds, the solution went in one nostril and out the other. He sputtered, wiped his face, and smiled. Mama’s Boy watched this with wide eyes, waiting for the reaction; for the verdict.

“It’s not too bad, B,” he said. “You should do it.” Yes, boy, you should.

Even still it took some haranguing, but the result was a chair pulled over to the sink (he’s quite a bit shorter than his brother) and a boy standing on that chair. He had a deer in the headlights look on his face as he leaned over. I still can’t believe he let me stick the end of that pot in his nose. It’s not like him at all.

Unfortunately, he was so clogged that there was no “in one nostril and out the other” experience, as there had been with his brother. The saline went in and ran into a wall. It tried to break through. But all it really did, as far as he was concerned, was burn the living daylights out of his sinus cavity.

So, he spewed it out of every place in his face and began to wail. This is the part I expected. If anything, I’m just surprised it took 45 seconds to arrive there.

“It’s STINGING!” he wailed. “That was HORRIBLE!” More wailing. “It didn’t work at all! The wailing continued. It was answered by my pleading.

“Boy, you are so stuffed up! You didn’t give it quite enough time to work. Let it work, boy. Try again…” Oh, no. There was to be no more trying of the neti pot. His mind was made up. I could have upped the ante to 5 mini figs and a trip to Chick-fil-a (I didn’t. I do have my limits…) and he still would have walked away.

The crying continued. I’m sure I don’t have to explain to you the effects of crying, but just for the sake of stating the obvious, crying generates more snot. More snot means more games of Kadiba in our future.

We solved nothing.

At this point, I started looking for some Benedryl. Maybe we could go about this the less natural way. While looking for the Benedryl, I came across the bulb syringe in our medicine box. (I have a friend, who shall remain nameless to protect her very delicate reputation, who calls the bulb syringe a “boogie suck.” I am not making this up. A boogie suck? Seriously.  I just can’t even go there. And if I can’t go there, no one should.)

I pulled the syringe out of the box and showed the kids.

“I should have done it this way,” I said. “This is what we used to do for you guys when you were babies.” All four kids wanted to hear stories about being stopped up and flushed out as babies. Well, Mama’s Boy was still pretty miffed, so he didn’t care to hear any. What kind of family has a bag full of these kinds of stories? I know. Sick.

“Hey,” I said in a stroke of genius. “I’ll try it this way,” I said. “I’ll show you how easy it is.” I was going to show Mama’s Boy that this was an alternate method for us to help him out. So I took the solution that didn’t get used and put it in the little blue syringe. Then, without any further planning, I pumped that up into my sinuses. We are all about examples tonight. Unfortunately for me, I think I sent it through at about 35 mph. I about lost an eye in this. What happened next is a bit of a blur to me. I think I made a pretty big scene, because the kids were really wide eyed by this time. Mama’s Boy stopped crying. When I came to my senses and washed my face a time or two, I looked at Mama’s Boy and said, “That was worse than the neti pot. I don’t recommend it.”

That was a stupid thing to say. He took it as gospel. But in the very next moment, I readjusted my trajectory and perfected my technique. This time was  less painful, but no less explosive. I lost the syringe altogether and things went flying. A whole bunch of saline hit the wall and the inside of the toaster.

“Whoops,” I said. Even Mama’s Boy was laughing now.”You see?” I said. “Not so bad this time. Want to try it?”

He was laughing.


I knew he was going to say that.

We didn’t solve his problem, but he fulfilled his part of the bargain. And part of me believes we took a baby step toward something that will someday solve his problem. So true to my ill-fated bribe, I went to Target tonight.

To buy a Bini Fig.

This is not over yet, Boy.

Mama’s Boy and the Neti Pot

I am about to drive to Target to buy a couple of Lego mini figures.
Why? you ask.
Well, I will tell you.
I am buying them because I bribed two of the children tonight: the boys. And while the experiment itself appeared to be a failure, I believe we covered enough ground to have earned the mini figures.

Now, before you judge me, I’ll tell you I don’t believe in bribery. I also don’t believe in sin. But I manage to mess that up on occasion. So, you know, I am known to strike a bribe with a short person if the situation calls for it.

It’s bad parenting that got me here. You don’t have to tell me that. If I had gotten a few things solidly in place when they were babies, we wouldn’t be making a Lego mini figs run tonight.

We’ve all been sick in one way or another this week. We camped last weekend, which is a separate blog, if I ever get around to it. I sat around just enough campfire smoke to come home stopped up. I was stubborn for 2 full days. Finally, on Day 3, I got out the Neti Pot, dusted it off, and grimaced as I thought forward in time about 30 seconds.

Have you ever flushed out your sinuses with a neti pot? It isn’t a glamorous process. In fact, it’s horrible. If you are married to the wrong person and that wrong person happens to come around the corner while you are flushing with a neti pot, it might cause a 48 hour Bermuda divorce. It’s really that awful. Many marriages have ended over lesser matters. My husband, instead of filing, jumped on board. We share a respect for The Pot. We also have very clean sinuses.

But there’s one person in this family who needs the neti pot more than any human ever. That’s Mama’s Boy. He was born allergic to everything. We have jokingly mentioned getting him a plastic, hypo-allergenic bubble for him to tool around in. It’s really what he needs.

Today, quite suddenly, his sinuses flared. I guess it’s a cold. I guess I gave it to him. Either way, he was stuffed so full of his own fluids that his request to play me in Kadima came out clearly as “Kadiba.” I’m not good at Kadiba and I promptly told him so. I realized then that he was headed for the doctor if we don’t intervene somehow. He has never done the neti pot. And unfortunately, I’ve said a bit too much about the process for him to just agree peaceably to try it. Truthfully, Mama’s Boy isn’t going to agree to try anything without some type of a very serious discussion. It may end in threats. It may end in bribery. But you aren’t going to get an easy ‘yes.’ And if you do, I will pay you in mini figures. I’ll buy you 100 of those puppies if you fix this problem.

Clearly I’m not learning any lessons here.

“Listen, boy,” I said, very earnestly. “I really, really want to help you. I’m telling you the neti pot is a near miracle cure.”

“No, thanks,” he said, without even letting my words fall softly to the carpet.

I went on with more persuasion, more earnestness, more pleading.

“No, I don’t want to. You said it was terrible. You said you hate it.”

Hmm. Did I say that? Actually, I kinda love it. I just hate getting the whole thing started. OK, I kinda do hate it. But I LOVE how I feel immediately following.

“Boy, you remember how you looked at me with horror when I opted to have the doctor give you a strep antibiotic shot instead of 10 days of antibiotics, 3 times a day?”


“Remember how you thought I betrayed you to the doctor? But then the next morning you felt like a million bucks and you thanked me for the shot?”

“Yes,” he replied, skeptically.

“Well,” I continued. “This is just like that, minus the painful shot part.” Why did I compare this to a shot? That was a totally counterproductive move on my part.

“No, thanks,” he said again.

“OK, OK,” I said. “Listen up, boy. If you will just try it…and let me help you…I will pay you a dollar.”

“No!” he said, emphatically. We must be spoiling him. He didn’t even bat an eye at the $1 mark.

“Two dollars…” I said. Are we at an auction?

“No!” he said, but he laughed. I think he at least considered it then.

“I’ll pay you in a mini fig!” I shouted. YES! THAT will do it!

This almost destroyed him. I had held up the golden ticket. Oh, he wanted that mini figure so badly. For those without Lego knowledge. This is the equivalent of $2.99 on the bribery scale. Now he had a real choice to make. He so totally did not want to do that neti pot flush, but he wanted the Lego guy bigger than life.

That’s when AG stepped in.

“B,” he said. “What if I try it first? To show you it’s ok?”  I yanked my head around in a “What you talkin’ about, Willis” kind of way. Did he just say that for real? This was an uncharacteristic move. The doting mother in me wanted, with all my heart, to believe that AG was throwing himself under the bus to help his brother.  But I think he was secretly hoping there’d be a mini figure in it for him, too.

“Wow, AG,” I said. “Thanks! But hold up…is this about you getting a mini fig, too?”

“No!” he said. “Not at all.”

After much hoopla, Mama’s Boy agreed to watch AG try it first and we began the grand experiment.

To be continued…(later, because I have to go to Target right now).