I May Be Partially Responsible for Inciting a Psychotic Breakdown
December 16, 2013 § 10 Comments
One summer during college I got a babysitting gig after answering an ad, “Seeking a reliable individual with childcare experience to watch a 7 year old boy, must be willing to do some light housekeeping.” The ad would have been much more accurate if it had said, “Seeking someone to clean my house who is cool with constantly being trailed by a 7 year old.” To be fair both sides padded the truth since I had also claimed to be reliable and to have had experience with children, neither of which were true.
Here are the order of events leading up to the incident:
A tiny field mouse ran across the kitchen floor. Immediately I leapt into action grabbing a large salad bowl from the countertop and placing it upside down over the small creature to contain it. The little boy, who we’ll call Ian because that was his name, screamed for me to ‘KILL IT!’
No I would not. Out of respect. For nature. And life. And because I’m not a serial killer you fucking psychopath.
I didn’t really know what to do next so I handled the situation the way I handle all my problems, I left it as it was and told myself I’d deal with it later. But Ian would not drop it. He kept following me around menacingly chanting, ‘kill it, you gotta kill it.’ It was pretty unsettling and to be honest I feared for that mouse’s safety.
As a distraction tactic I told Ian we could walk down to the corner store and I’d give him five dollars to spend on whatever he wanted. He wanted candy. His parents had mentioned he doesn’t “do well” with sugar but I’m very good at making terrible decisions so I kept my word and let him get whatever his little heart desired. It wasn’t until we got back to the house that I realized what a healthy budget five dollars is for corner store candy.
Ian ate his candy. He ate his candy like a motherfucker. Not long after, the sugar-high began to kick in and that’s when shit started to get REAL.
Before I knew it Ian was gripping a bright red lipstick and furiously painting his face. So furiously that it was borderline violent. I knew I should stop him but I was a little hesitant on how to go about disarming him. I didn’t want to shame him for playing with make-up. For once he looked happy and at the time ripping the lipstick from his young impressionable hand seemed like it could be a hate crime.
Ian’s next move was straight up rock n’ roll. He grabbed a small vase from a nearby side table, raised it above his head and smashed it to the ground.
Holy fuck kid. What possible reason could you have had for losing your shit on that vase? I was momentarily taken back. Part of me was thinking, TOTALLY INTO IT. LET’S DO THIS!! The other part did not feel safe.
The child had gone rogue.
He made a break for the kitchen. I tried to grab him but it was impossible. He was moving in a feverish panic like a tiny meth-head ninja. He stormed into the pantry ripping snacks open, shoving handfuls of whatever into his mouth. It was terrifying.
He shot from the pantry leaving a trail of cereal behind. I ran after him. This chase went on for what felt like hours. I’d lose sight of him as he darted in and out of rooms, then he’d pop up right behind me laughing like a fucking lunatic.
I was finally able to corner him as he paused standing on top of the couch. He stared at me. I stared back at him trying to read his expression. It was one I’d seen before. Was he surrendering? Nope. That wasn’t it? I knew this face…
We locked eyes both knowing what was coming. And for some god awful reason I ran towards him. Maybe it was instinct. Maybe somewhere deep down I thought, I deserve this. Either way it happened. The vomit. Projectile vomit. Everywhere. On me. On the couch. On the floor. Honestly I was surprised at how much sheer volume came out of such a small boy.
If you’ve never had another human being vomit on you. Including your face. It’s fucked up. It’s warm and pungent. It feels personal. It feels like a violation. I closed my eyes and tried to imagine myself somewhere far away. Somewhere safe. It didn’t work. The smell got the best of me and well, before I knew it I had to vomit too. And vomit I did.
At that moment I remember thinking, God help me. I need an adult. A real adult. And then his mother walked in the door. Shit. Not that adult. I scanned the room trying my best to quickly calculate a cost-analysis of the damage. ‘Everything is fine’ I assured her as I waved my vomit covered hand in her direction. But everything was not fine. In fact it was the exact of the opposite of fine.
She was, naturally, irate. After getting her up to speed on the situation. She let me know they would no longer be needing my services. Probably for the best. Then I went home and high-fived BC* pills into my face.
I’m Sure You Have a Lot Of Things Going For You But Your Child…Your Child is a Dick: