When we first found out that the Mother of the Gremlin was pregnant, we were extremely concerned that the Gremlin himself would not be a very good big brother. This was not in the least because the Gremlin is a picky, bossy tyrant of a 5 year-old, but rather from the fact that to function, he requires his life be scheduled to the minute – somewhat akin to Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory.
It was an amazing surprise when the Pickle arrived and the Gremlin … loved him. The best anecdote we have of this to date is the fact that wherever we drive, the Gremlin will always reach over across car seats and hold the Pickle’s hand.
Now this is not to say that we have been sitting back and just hoping the Gremlin would magically come to enjoy his brother’s company. We had been putting enough time and energy into preparing him for his brother’s arrival that had we been alternatively tasked to create alternative energy or create peace in the Middle East, we would have put big oil out of business and be given the Nobel Peace Prize. One of the things we had been talking to him about was if he or his brother got in trouble.
“So buddy, we need you to keep calm more than anything – if you’re yelling or whining we can’t understand you. But just stay calm and tell us what you saw. You won’t get in trouble, and we’ll get your brother fixed up, okay?”
We weren’t sure if this was soaking in or not until Thursday. Everyone was going about their daily routines – the Father of the Gremlin was diligently working (and by that I mean, writing an update for this site), and the MOTG, Gremlin, and the Pickle were packed in the car on their way to CostCo. They had just pulled onto the expressway when the Gremlin piped up.
“Mumma, you should pull over and take a look at Pickles. I think he has something in his mouth and now he can’t breath.” The MOTG looked back, and the Gremlin calmly smiled up at her – holding his brother’s hand – and there were normal signs of stirring from the Pickle’s car seat. The MOTG was skeptical, but the Gremlin seemed very sure.
Once she pulled over and walked around the car, the MOTG did not manage to stay as calm as the Gremlin. The Pickle’s face was moving from dark red to purple, and he was swinging and jumping, trying to move in his car seat. The MOTG fished around his mouth, and managed to extract a wood chip that had become lodged in the Pickle’s throat. Once it was removed the Pickle began to breath again, right up to when he made a lunge that grabbed the wood chip and tried to again stuff it in his mouth.
The MOTG safely disposed of the wood chip, and made an inspection of the car seat and clothing to ensure no further playground-related items would be able to be inserted into the Pickle’s airway. She got back in the car and started down the road.
“Thank you very much for telling me that, buddy, you probably just saved your brother’s life.” The Gremlin just smiled, and kept holding onto his brother’s hand.