There is nothing worse that you can experience than your child being in pain. I would so much rather be the one suffering than to watch my Munchee be in agony. It is the most helpless vulnerable feeling when your kid is in anguish, and you have no idea how to help them. Their torment echoes through your very being, and you would give anything to take the misery away. At least that is how I felt on Thursday – otherwise known as the fateful day of the ant.
There was nothing abnormal about this particular day. The Munch was playing with her babysitter Liliana, while I was getting some work done – the sound of their laughter filling the house. Snow was falling out the window, and there was the quite humming of the dryer turning its contents round and round. All was peaceful. Serene even. Quaint. Until The Munch absentmindedly took a sip out of her Hello Kitty cup… that had old orange juice in it from maybe 3 days prior.
Munch: Ahhhhhh Mamma!!!!! There is something in my throat!!!
Toni: What? What is it??
Munch: I took a sip from my Hello Kitty cup, and something came out of the straw and is in my throat.
Toni: Let me see! Stick your tongue. Wait… I need a flash light… stick your tongue out again. Oh. My. God.
Munch: What Mamma? What is it?
IT WAS FUCKING ANT!! I guess when she took that sip, the ant shot to the back of her throat, and bit her uvula. Btw… why does uvula look so much like the word vulva? Something is just not right here.
But I couldn’t tell Munch that there was an ant lodged in her throat. That would put her in a state of panic! So I played it cool.
I tried to have her drink something to wash it down. Nothing. I tried to make her eat something to push it off. Nothing. I tried to stick my finger in her mouth and brush it away. That did not work either — except I did succeed in gagging her.
I then called over to my grandmother’s house because her nurse Nawal lives with her. I figured Nawal could maybe get it out, because I couldn’t fucking deal anymore. I couldn’t stop thinking about how twisted it was that an ant had bit her mouth punching bag.
Nawal came with Q-tips and tried to scrap it off. Didn’t work. We then got tweezers, covered the tips with paper towel and tape so it wasn’t too sharp, and tried to pull it off. I had to hold Munch’s head and pin her tongue down and Nawal reached in and Liliana held the flashlight. You would think this was a pretty advanced operation right? But the ant’s stupid little teeth and head were so embedded in her uvula, that all Nawal could do was pull off the body. So then we had an ant ass as a memento, but the head was still in there! And every time Nawal went down her throat with the tweezers, of course The Munch would retch and move her head.
After about an hour of making my sweet Munchee heave, I decided to give up. She was going to have to live with an ant in her throat. I mean there are worse things. Ants are protein. But I was worried it would get infected. Or it wouldn’t come out and her skin would grow over it. I don’t know. All I know is that I wouldn’t want to be deep throating an ant.
Munch: But Mamma what is it? What is that black thing?
Toni: I don’t know Munch. What do you think it is?
Munch: A blackberry!
Toni: You are probably right!
The next day it was still there. I tried calling the doctor to see what I should do, but I also had to explain what had happened without letting Munch know. So I just started spelling things I thought might tip her off…. But then got carried away.
Toni: You see… she took a sip of old juice, and then an A-N-T kinda B-I-T-E her uvula, and it is still stuck in her throat. We have pulled out the B-O-D-Y but the H-E-A-D is still in there. I D-O-N-‘T really know W-H-A-T to D-O.
But it didn’t look infected… so I didn’t bring her in. Partly because I am lazy, and partly because I just couldn’t handle any more objects choking her. And then finally, after about 47 hours, the ant either disintegrated, or Munch swallowed it.
(This was me trying to get a picture of down Munch’s throat… but she just kept moving and it was really dark in there. But I really wish I could have captured it, because it was traumatizing).