As soon as Papa Kay appears, they break out in choruses of "TTT!!!" There have been times when Talia has been running ahead, not responding as we call after her. Jiggle the tic tac box, and just like Pavlov's dog, she comes sprinting back toward the sound. When Brooklyn and Talia found out they weren't coming to Denver, one of their main complaints was that they would miss out on Tic Tacs.
For the most part, Tic Tac Time is pretty innocuous. When doled out two or three at a time, this one-calorie treat is a much better alternative than many sugary sweets. NomiAnn may sigh as my children beg, but the truth is that we would all be sad if Papa Kay suddenly gave up his Tic Tac Trademark.
Driving back from Denver, however, the Tic Tacs got their revenge. Eli was complaining (again) about the cows and their stinky smells. "It hurts my nose!" Unsure how to help the boy with the sensitive sniffer, we offered him a Tic Tac and told him it might help. A moment later the wails grew pained and intense. It took us a while to decipher any words through the wails, but we finally caught a few snippets like "stuck" and "won't come out."
Eli, not understanding how a Tic Tac could help with the yucky smell, had stuck the candy up his nose. All the way up. It was so sad watching him cry in pain, but there was little we could do since the candy had gone all the way in. We did our best to comfort the poor boy as he wailed, coughed and sneezed. Just as we were trying to figure out where the nearest ER might be, Eli took a sip of water and announced that he felt better. My guess is that the offending Tic Tac had finally gone all the way through and dissolved.
Afterward, ice cream helped assuage our PTTTD--Post Traumatic Tic Tac Disorder. As we were sitting down together, Papa Kay kindly explained to Eli that Tic Tacs were meant for our mouths, not our noses. Tasting a tic tac can help with a bad smell; not snorting it. Eli looked up at us with big, wide eyes still red and puffy from crying. "But I didn't knowed that!"
Well, for better or worse, he definitely knows now. Admittedly, there's a sort of guffawing hilarity about a tic tac being stuck up anybody's nose. But when "anybody" turns out to be your own son, it's just not that funny anymore. We can chuckle about it now, but it's caused me to reflect on the complete trust and faith of a child. His nose hurt, and he believed us when we said a Tic Tac could help. While this was a literal misunderstanding, I better recognize the great import of never abusing a child's trust.
So who's up for a Tic Tac? :)