Friday, January 28, 2022

7 Quick Takes about Triumphs at School, Not-So-Great First Impressions, and What Happens when the Anesthesia Wears Off

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


My 13-year-old is in an after-school running club. This week he brought home a paper about nutrition and healthy eating for runners. He said the group leader gave it to them because she was tired of reminding people not to eat candy while  they're running.

That same afternoon, my 7-year-old came home and proudly told me he has "the second loudest voice in the whole school!" Apparently, it's second only to the vice principal and I don't know if that should make me proud or embarrassed.

So school is going great here for everyone, thanks.


After years of helping our 17-year-old manage her attention difficulties in every non-medical way we know of, she still struggles so we did what we never envisioned ourselves doing and started researching ADHD meds. 

But after lots of research, I still have one unanswered question: why do prescription medications have such ridiculous names? It makes it really hard to take them seriously. 

After a while, they all started to sound like made-up baby names article I read last week. I should probably re-read that article, for all I know "Vyvanse" was probably on it.


I watched this video and instantly texted it to Phillip saying "We need to watch this with the older kids."

If you can't watch the whole thing right now, a quick summary is that every time you bombard your brain with high-dopamine activities like the Internet, video games, or sugar, it tries to get back to "normal" by, well, making you kind of sad afterward. 

Not even 10 minutes later, one of my kids who'd been binge-watching YouTube videos put away the phone and said to me, "I feel guilty but I don't know why."

Being a mom, I answered, "Well, I  know why" and whipped out the video which I already had cued up on my phone screen like I'm a freaking psychic.

"Maybe that's why, when we get home from vacation, I want to go clean my room and do some good old-fashioned unpleasant work," my 15-year-old mused out loud after watching it. I don't know about that, but it's definitely something to think about.


After watching that video, others like it started to appear in my YouTube feed and I seriously started toying with the idea of a family dopamine fast. 

I've spent the last few weeks mulling over how our family chore system isn't working any more, and after thinking about how dopamine is also tied to motivation and how various people in the family have complained to me how hard it is to motivate themselves to do boring stuff, I'm wondering if dopamine overload isn't the reason.

Phillip and I are thinking we're going to introduce the kids this weekend to the idea of a weeklong dopamine detox, where the family goes a week without movies, phone or computer screens (except for specific school- and work-related tasks), and sugary treats. 

We're sure they'll all love the idea as much as we do.


My 10-year-old invited a friend from school to her youth activity at church. Phillip was gone on a work trip so I had to bring everyone, meaning that the mom's first impression (she'd never met us before) was watching allll of my kids chaotically pushing each other out of our clown car/minivan. 

Our daughters ran inside together, and I thought it would be a nice idea to go in and let the other mom see her daughter settled in before leaving. Since she'd never before met us or been in our church building before, I thought it would give her some peace of mind.

Unfortunately, the peace of mind thing is the opposite of what happened. 

My daughter's youth group had switched rooms without me knowing, so when we arrived at the door of their assigned classroom, everything was dark and empty. This other mom and I ended up wandering the halls for 5-10 minutes until we found them, which is incidentally the same length of time it takes to be sure that the person you just met is definitely not a responsible adult who has a clue what's going on.

I'm pretty sure that woman will never allow her daughter to be in my supervision again, but at least our girls had fun.


My 17-year-old had her wisdom teeth removed, and being with her as she woke up from anesthesia was something else. 

I was expecting her to be totally loopy, having seen online videos of kids waking up and babbling nonsense or freaking out because they think they don't have a tongue. But when I stroked my daughter's hair and asked how she was feeling, she looked up at me and said, "I'm dissociating."

"What?" I asked, partly because her speech was slurred and she had gauze in her mouth, but mostly because I wasn't expecting the first thing she said to me to be a 12-letter word.

So, I kid you not, the kid reached up and started fingerspelling it for me in sign language. I can't even spell 'dissociating' correctly without looking it up, letalone in a second language when I'm high on anesthesia.

Of course, the next thing she did was ask if they'd done the surgery yet and tell me she couldn't see because she didn't have her glasses (they were on her face,) so it's not like she was totally lucid.


Here's one for all you moms and grandmas out there. My 15-year-old showed this to me, who loves Marvel movies but also has a lot of respect for the super-glare I myself have honed over my long career as a mother. 

This is the exact thing I'm going to miss on digital detox, but oh, well. I'm excited, anyway.

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1 comment:

Mea Quinn Mustone said...

You crack me up. I meant to post sooner, I am thinking of joining the google calendar world, how is it? Any chance you can send me video links, they are not working. Thanks, Mea Quinn Mustone ( I swear I am a mom of 6 from MA, you can google me. LOL)
My email is