After several days of undiagnosed pain, we discovered on New Year's Eve that Beth had an abscessed tooth. She woke up looking like a chipmunk storing up nuts for the winter on one side. This picture is after the swelling had come down quite a bit. Katie and I had to wait for an hour and a half at Walmart to get the right prescription. When we finally made it home, Beth began screaming. She did not want to take any medicine. She meant it, too. We determined pretty quickly that you can't force a six year old to swallow. So we changed strategies, and thus began the long hours of persuasion that have had to take place three times a day to get her to take the medicine. One time yesterday, she finally took the medicine after 48 minutes of coaxing (including two prayers, many snuggles and bribes, and one cup of chocolate milk.) I took all the ornaments off the Christmas tree in the time it took Rich and Katie to convince Beth to take the medicine. Did I mention that each dose of medicine is only one teaspoon? Today has been better. She is taking it in under 3 minutes now. We think the chocolate milk has been the key. Thank goodness for chocolate milk!!
If I am being reflective, times like these are kind of nice in family life. (Rich is wondering what on earth I am talking about at this point?! This has not been nice. This has been painful and tiring for all. But nice? Wait, just hear me out...) It has been nice because we have been able to spend some time giving Beth our undivided attention. Everyone has been more patient and kind to her, and they have left us alone to just give her some special time (possibly because they were worrying we might make them take medicine?) I know for sure she knows that we love her and that she matters to us and that we are here for her when she is having a hard time. Plus, I will tell you what, we have all sure learned a little more patience.
So the lessons in the school of life just keep on coming, even on New Year's Eve. Happy 2009 to all!