Monday, July 06, 2009

The "met wet weeder pod" escapade...

On a morning walk not too long ago, Richard brought up a a report he had heard on the news about Republicans in California proposing to close the Poison Control Centers
Cutting the California Poison Control System (CPCS) would save the state $5.9 million. Eliminating CPCS would also cost the state an additional $70 million in additional emergency department visits, 911 calls, state Medicaid services, and other demands currently handled by telephone triage.
We tend to pay more attention to California politics than we do Missouri politics. We discussed this at length -- especially the idea that they were being rather penny-wise and pound-foolish-- because we had an occasion to make use of the local Poison Control Center ourselves, all because of the pod of the milkweed plant, sort of... event I was first reminded of after a long, long time when I saw this beautiful milkweed, which is a poisonous plant, growing in the right of way along the frontage road as we took a walk one morning a few weeks ago.

This tale involves two little blond, blue-eyed boys, who were about the same age and the same size.

Our son Nat (on the left) met Jarrod in the Spring of 1981, shortly after we moved here and began attending the church where Jarrod's father was the pastor.

Why they are all standing outside in front of snow-covered cords of wood (we had a wood-burning stove to heat the house) is because this picture was taken a year later when Nat turned 5 years and Jarrod came over to celebrate his birthday. The young cat in Richard's arms was his birthday present -- he wanted her in the picture too. We did not have a flash attachment for the camera so the picture commemorating the day had to be taken outside (and there are other similar birthday pictures outside with the cake scattered throughout this blog).

I am sure there is a good reason why everybody appears to be listing severely to the right (their left), probably because I took the picture. Moving right along.

Jarrod and Nat were best friends. Both of them apart were a little squirrley, but put them together? Whew. Well, let's just say they were capable of some mischief.

One day toward the end of summer -- either the first summer we were here or the one that occurred later on that same year the picture was taken -- I dropped Nat off at Jarrod's house so they could play together. Becky, Jarrod's mother, was a saint about letting our kid come over to play. About a hour later I got a call from Becky.

We think that Nat ate a milkweed pod. I called poison control and they said to buy a bottle of ipecac syrup and get him to vomit. And you have to call them back after he throws up.

So I jumped into the car (I could still jump in those days) and raced over to the pharmacy and picked up the ipecac syrup. Then I went to Jarrod's house. I asked Nat to show me what he had eaten, and he pointed to a vine growing up a telephone pole guidewire and said:

I ate a met wet weeder pod.

I wasn't up on botany at that point, but I was fairly sure that what he ate was not a milkweed pod.

Now I know that it was an opened blossom of a wild potato vine.

But being rather safe than sorry, once we were back at the house, I made him drink the ipecac syrup and he did indeed vomit. And then I called the Poison Control Center and told them the situation and described what he had thrown up, and the very kind man said "He should be fine. Call us back if you have any questions."

And he was fine, and he never again attempted to eat a met wet weeder pod, although one time when we were taking a walk down our dry creek bed, empty he did grab a handful of poison ivy berries and want to know if they were edible.

1 comment:

The Weaver of Grass said...

Oh gosh, one scary episode LL. I think we have all had incidents like that when our children were small. Glad it turned out well -not so sure about the poor lad drinking all that syrup though.