Friday, May 6, 2011

Conversations with the neices

This past Monday, I took my younger niece to the hospital. Her insurance only covers the lab work done at that lab, and she needed x-rays and blood work done. You see, she's tiny. Super tiny. And given certain current circumstances, there is a chance that if she can't grow at least eight inches in the next six months, she'll be classified as a dwarf for life, having reached her maximum height. Since there is reason to believe this is hormonally charged, if we check her out, there's a possibility that she won't be saddled with the additional hardship of tiny stature in her adult life.

I chose not to leave the older sister behind, and I made her come with us. I discovered that as much fun as we have together, we are apparently unusual in the amount of laughter that we generate. I don't think this is a bad thing. I think it's sad that others don't have the same propensity for levity in their lives.

Anyway, our conversation with registration went like this:

Registration Lady: What's her date of birth?

Me: February 15, 2000/

RL: So she's eleven?

*Niece2 and I exchange looks. She starts giggling.*

Me: Yeah.

RL leaning over thoughtfully. "And what race would you classify her as?"

*again with the giggling, because our family is extremely pale, blue eyes, and only our hair color suggests we aren't actually albino. I try to get serious.*

Me: Um, gee. I'd say white.

*N2 and N1 start laughing again.*

RL: So your primary language in the home, is it English?

Me: Si

*RL blinks at me, smiles without amusement. N1 cackles. She pulls her little sister onto her lap since there are only two chairs.*

RL: So that's a yes. *she looks up at me* Are you the ones who were laughing in the waiting room.

Me: We were the only one's in there.

RL: We could hear you from here.

Me: Sorry.

RL: Mm.

*The nieces and I shrug to each other as the registration lady taps away on her keyboard.*

RL: Does she have any physical disabilities?

N1: Yeah, she's short.

*N2 makes a horrified sound which is completely lost because she's already laughing with her sister about the automatic response.*

We finished up and returned to the waiting room.

Me: Shh! You really have to be more quiet. We're in a hospital waiting room.

N1: No one is here but us.

Me: I know, but they seem to be lacking a sense of humor.

N2: How unexpected.

N1: *giggling* She has a terminal illness of shortness.

Me: *deepening my tone* Ma'am, I'm Dr. Watts. I'm so sorry to tell you this. *dramatic pause* Your sister is dying of shortness.

N1: *carrying the joke* We only see her surviving for another 86 years at most.

Me: There's really nothing else we can do for her, except... Ma'am, we can offer her stilts.

N1: Or a pogo stick.

N2: *grinning, she taps her lip thoughtfully.* Your family will suffer side effects. *She starts bobbing her head up and down* Neck cricks.

Considering that she had x-rays and a needle jammed into the back of her hand, I'd say she handled that very well. :)

7 comments:

Amber Skyze said...

Yup, this is something my daughter and I would do. :)

Mia Watts said...

I love my family. I love that we're a little bit off kilter. :)

Molly Daniels said...

Nothing like a sense of humor to get you through the ER:) LOVE it!

Simone Anderson said...

More people need to laugh. It might be a culture thing up there. :)

Chris said...

Hmm. I wonder if the registration lady actually wanted to be one of those severe nuns?

Have they ever tested your niece for celiac? One of the symptoms in children can be stunted growth. And hey, 1 in 133 of us pale northern European types have it...

Julia Rachel Barrett said...

Let us know how your niece does - what's a poop stick?

Mia Watts said...

Um. I dunno. Do you mean, "pogo stick"?