When you have to keep a six-year-old child up until 2 AM–especially a six-year-old child who loves to sleep–you have to get clever. Of course, because it is a six-year-old child, you can only get SO clever.
Edgar’s sleep-deprived EEG scheduled for 9:30 AM on Friday morning meant that he could get only four hours of sleep on Thursday night. So, where do all the cool six-year-olds hang out in the wee hours of the night? Wal-Mart and Stop & Shop are open until 10 PM and midnight respectively, which left us with two hours to finagle.
We landed at Ma’s Donuts–a local 24-hour eatery–a little after midnight and selected any number of high-calorie treats and sat down.
As Edgar and I were talking–about school, about his upcoming visit to the hospital, about Halloween–I removed the cover from my hot tea to let it cool. He stared in amazement at the steam, and I could see the proverbial wheels turning. He removed a flashlight he had procured at Wal-Mart two hours before from his pocket and asked, “Mom, what would that steam look like if I flash my green light on it?”
He turned on the light and aimed it at the steam, marveling at the swirl of green fog and remarked, “Whoa . . . It looks like special effects.”
Our evening continued, and I finished my tea. Edgar asked to see my tea bag–and before I could explain how steeping works, he had the teabag open and was arranging the damp tea leaves on a plate, creating a city with buildings of varying height.
By 1:15 AM, our remaining crumbs attracted the attention of the resident fruit fly. While most people would shoo the creature away, Edgar invited it to join us, was sad when it momentarily flew off, and was anxious to talk to it. When it eventually returned and perched on his plate, he looked at it with what I can only term love and said, “Guess what, fly? Tomorrow the doctors are going to look at my brain! Isn’t that cool?”
As I sat there at in the middle of the night at a mom-and-pop donut shop and stared in awe at my beautiful boy, I thought about what the doctors are going to see when they “look at [his] brain.” And I realized that no matter what they see, they won’t see what I see–a creative, compassionate boy who can see theatrical effects in a cup of tea, a city sculpture in a pile of tea leaves, and a confidant in a fruit fly.
There is no one like Edgar. How could there be? And while an EEG and neurologist will see much, they won’t see that. And I realized at that moment how very lucky we are.