The pediatrician recommended that we get our son some vitamins. We bought a bottle of children’s chewables shaped like the characters from Finding Nemo. They’re good and sometimes he even asks for them before we offer.
I wish those gummies were around when I was a kid. My pediatrician recommended vitamins too. My mom is a good mom, so she gave them to me, but I hated them. I really hated them.
I tried each morning to swallow them down, but it was tough. They made me gag and they tasted terrible – no chewy, fruity properties like the gummies we get today. These pills were chalky and tart and they tasted like vitamins. How could a child handle that?
I began to hide them in my lap until after breakfast. I would excuse myself from the table and head to the bathroom. I flushed a few of them down the toilet, but I was ignorant of just how exactly our plumbing worked. I convinced myself that they might come back.
I remember looking frantically around my room one morning in search of a new disposal option. I settled on the toy box. I lifted the lid and dropped them inside. My new routine was born – pretend to swallow, tuck them in my lap, leap from the table and hide them there. Brilliant. Foolish. This went on for weeks.
One day my mom came into my room and announced it was time to clean up. The toys and books and little girl stuff had taken over and she was ready to make order where chaos clearly reigned. I began to panic.
I did as she asked. We cleaned, we tidied. The room came together in no time at all. All that was left was the toy box. The toy box!
My mom pulled it out from under the desk. I pushed it back. “I can do that myself” I said. Her eyebrows furrowed.
She pulled it back out. I reached to push back. She stopped me and said my name with the quizzical exasperation that only mothers ever perfect. I relented and began to shake as she pulled off the lid.
What would she say? What would she do? I wasn’t prepared for her calm.
She found the vitamins one by one, two by two, far too many, far to fast. She knew what I had done. I looked at the vitamins and back at my mom.
“You lied to me.” Four tiny words. That’s all she said, but her expression was grave and her heart half broken.
Now I’m compelled to tell the truth.