Thursday, February 19, 2009

Odors, Etc.

Thank you to my health helpers out there. Because of your comments, I decided that I'm not crazy (in my nose, anyway) and I emailed my doctor. We'll see what he has to say about my stinky nose.

I have to tell you how the stinky nose thing started. Let me preface my little tale by assuring you that I'm not trying to be mean or ultra-judgmental toward anyone. What I am is shocked and appalled about a student's situation.

Over the last three years that I've worked at my morning school (I drive from one school to another at noon), we've had a student who has often smelled absolutely horrible (words can't describe it). It got so bad a couple of weeks ago that every room she was in smelled horrible also. Parents and students who were at school for the science fair were asking, "What is that smell?" This poor nine-year-old girl comes with four other kids to a small reading group in my room, and at times all of us (including me) have had to find ways to cover our noses and/or scoot inconspicuously away from her. The kids in her class have started making faces and ostracizing her. (The counselor has stepped in with some tolerance education for the other students.)

Teachers and the counselor at our school have spoken to the student (over four years) about the benefits of bathing and wearing clean clothing, generally to no avail. The principal has also had conversations with the student and her mother (many times) about the problem, again with little relief. In fact, the mother refuses to take any responsibility for making sure her daughter is bathed and that her clothes are laundered. She's too busy. As a mom who probably over-bathed her kids, I find this entire situation unbelievable. All I can do is imagine what their house must be like (but not for long). And how could you ignore the fact that your child is filthy? What is wrong with this mother??? (And some info: We've been informed that Social Services isn't interested in grooming. They will step in if the child is in danger due to neglect or abuse.)

So, back to the stinky nose (sighing and stepping off of soapbox, but I could step back on at any moment) ... I thought that the smell in my nose was the smell of my student that I couldn't stop thinking about. In short, I thought that I was imagining the smell in my nose. Then I thought that I was smelling myself.

This isn't the first time that I've thought I was imagining something that was wrong with me. In fact, I try for quite a while to talk myself out of whatever is ailing me. I know other women who do the same thing. I'm not sure what this means, but it makes me think too much. Do we just hate being sick? Do we hesitate to bother a doctor with our complaints? Do we hate to spend the time and money to have a complaint investigated? Do we hate to spend the time being sick? For me, it's yes to all of those things. I wanna feel fabulous all the time, and I'm pretty sure that I can play a large part in making that happen by talking myself into feeling good and/or talking myself out of feeling bad (this does not work with shingles).

Sorry this has turned into a rambling blah-blah-blog. I'm truly distressed by the fact that so many kids are handicapped or enabled or just plain ignored by their parents. This has been just one story. There are many, many others. Tomorrow I'll find something happy to say about stitching.


Anonymous said...

Doris, hope you get answers to the stinkyness :-). Maybe a sinus infection??? please let us know what the dr says. But I must comment on your student. I cannot believe some people on this earth are allowed to reproduce! Social services should realize that neglect is a danger to this child but they are understaffed so often in most states. It's so hard to get intervention most of the time. I feel sorry for this little girl. I know she's 9 and should be able to smell herself and care about her appearance but if she's got a self-centered mom such as this, this poor child will be lucky to make it to adulthood. i will keep this child in my prayers. Since her mom obviously doesn't care about her, God will care :-)

Katrina said...

Doris, no fun. I am glad you decided to check with your doctor. I agree with everyone else, I would be concerned that's it is an infection too. Hope you get it all figured out.

Brigitte said...

I think it's good that you go and see your doctor again. I hope he will quickly find out what it is and take care of it.

Anonymous said...