Thursday, January 19, 2012

Advantage? Disadvantage? Who knows?

One thing about Nathan that I haven't mentioned before is his pain tolerance.  It's amazing, and always has been.  On the surface, it would seem to be a distinct advantage to be able to live largely pain free.  Maybe not.

From the time he was a toddler, we've known that skint knees, stubbed toes, scraped elbows, and bonks on the head didn't effect Nathan like other kids.  He seemed almost oblivious to what would have sent other kids crying for mom.  We've been consistently amazed by it.  I certainly don't share this characteristic.  It's made him an easy kid to raise in some ways.  He's always been far more apt to cry over bruised feelings than physical injury.  In ways it's made him a fun kid.  Family friends and I have played rough with him since he was little.  He LOVES it.  We kept it up until he grew strong enough to hospitalize us. 

We've learned that when he does complain, it needs to be taken seriously and dealt with.  If he mentions pain, it's serious.  Today is a prime example.  Amanda was called to get him from school because he complained of an ear ache.  She had the doctor appointment scheduled before she arrived to get him.  Both ears infected.  Most would have complained days ago.  He took his shot like a trooper.  Bartender!  Your best antibiotics and a Mucinex chaser for my boy!!  I'd be lying if I said it didn't make me feel a bit inattentive that he's now "this sick" without my noticing and acting. 

Just what I need.  Another dichotomy.  Is this a good thing or not.  We guys believe that tough is good.  Big, strong, and tough is even better.  It's making me wonder if I haven't become a bit desensitized by his size and "toughness".  I have to remind myself that there's still a lot of little boy inside that massive body.  There's a gentle, tenderhearted soul hiding in that intimidating frame.  I'll admit.  It's not easy seeing a kid who is creeping up on 6'3" as "vulnerable" and "sensitive".  I'm not sure how to pull this one off, but I'm working on it.

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