Tag Archives: cranky kids

The Medicine Monster


Definition of a Medicine Monster: a normally happy and docile child turned into someone you don’t recognize, complete with crazy eyes, claws and fangs, because they are required to take medicine.

Have any of y’all ever experienced a Medicine Monster?

I have. Several times. I’m amazed I’ve lived to tell the tale.


Boo came home from school yesterday feeling crappy. No fever, thank God, but the stuffy nose, itchy eyes, body aches, cough and sore throat were all in attendance.

When it came time for bed, we tried to get her to take a NyQuil liquid gel. Being that she just turned 12, and has now been able to take an Aleve tablet for several months, I had hoped the Medicine Monster might have been laid to rest. I was wrong. She claimed that because she could only breathe through her mouth, she didn’t think she was gonna be able to swallow it (here come the claws). And it was too big, she said (her eyes are getting that crazy look). I told her to try anyway. Into the bathroom she goes, holds the liquid gel and a glass of water for a few minutes, psyching herself out. She puts the pill in her mouth and, after a count-to-3 countdown (almost like the countdown timer on a bomb), tries to swallow it. And then the panic ensues (the fangs have come out). She claims it got stuck in her throat and she had to make herself throw up because she couldn’t breathe. I was a little frustrated with her, but I tried hard not to show it. She ended up taking children’s cold and cough syrup, which again induced a countdown, and the choking and the spitting after she had swallowed it down to attempt to get the grape flavor out of her mouth. And finally, the Medicine Monster started to recede into the darkness of the night.

Why is giving a child medicine so difficult? I don’t understand. Everybody knows medicine tastes like ass, but FEELING like ass is WORSE, therefore, you take the medicine. And yes, I understand she’s only 12. But it doesn’t stop my frustrations.

And today was even worse than last night!

We went to the store to get some medicine. I was going to buy the DayQuil/NyQuil tablets, but she insisted she wouldn’t be able swallow them. So I bought the DayQuil/NyQuil liquid. She was gonna hate the hell out of it, but I assumed she’d get through it like she had with the children’s liquid medicine. We made our way out to the car and I poured her a dose of the medication. I also opened the bottle of water I knew she was going to need for the after experience.

Once she smelt the medicine, the Medicine Monster was there, in full effect. She psyched herself out, did her countdown and took a teeny sip, which she threatened to spit out, but finally swallowed. The shudders of disgust wracked her tiny body. And I was sitting there telling her if she just did it as fast as possible, it would be over and then she could drink all the water she wanted and even spit outside the car a few times. She took another sip….and promptly spewed the medicine all over herself and the interior of my car. In the very first parking space of the store, closest to the door. Oh, did I mention the entire outfit she chose to wear today was white? And that she made herself throw up in her lap??

The Medicine Monster was about to meet the Mommy Monster.

I got out of the car, grabbed the box of newly purchased Kleenex and told her to get out of the car if she was gonna keep acting crazy. I tried wiping up the seat the best that I could, but she was gonna be sitting in some of her own grossness on the ride home. I took her shirt and jacket (she was wearing another shirt underneath all that) and put them in one of the reusable grocery bags, along with all the nasty tissues and wet wipes from our now sticky DayQuil and slimy puke covered hands.

My momma raised me to not say anything at all if you didn’t have anything nice to say, and I replayed that like a mantra in my head all the way home.


I stain treated her now bright orange shirt and pants and went back outside to clean the puke smell out of my car while she changed her clothes. She tried to say she was sorry for what had happened and started making her normal excuses: the taste was awful, it was too thick, she was afraid she was gonna choke, she couldn’t breathe, etc. I’ve heard them all a million times over the years. I took a deep breath and tried to explain to her that the time for the Medicine Monster had run out. It was time for her to woman up. She needed to take any and all medication she was told to take because it was going to make her feel better. I was honest with her and told her that no one likes taking medicine. It tastes like crap and no one likes the taste of it. But as adults, we do what we need to do and get on with our lives.

That’s when the Mom Guilt Monster made her debut. <sigh>


I know I might have been a little too hard on her, but at the same time, enough was enough. So we went BACK to the store and got the DayQuil/NyQuil tablets. And I broke the DayQuil tablets in half. And she took them. With no complaints. Or forced vomiting.

She didn’t cheer at her game today. She didn’t attend her best friends’ birthday party/sleepover. We dropped off her best friends’ gift and returned home, to attempt eating something and take a nap.

She just took her second dose (NyQuil caplets) with no problems.

And tomorrow is a new day. Hopefully with no Medicine Monster, Mommy Monster or Mom Guilt Monster in sight.