Here’s one of many weirdly surreal conversations that we never imagined having. This is what took place two weeks ago the day before the kids went to be tested to see if they will be bone marrow matches for Scooby.
Me: So, I have something important to tell you. When we go to see Scooby tomorrow, the doctors want you guys to all have a blood test.
Ace: Like when they take blood out of Scooby’s arm? (We’d let him watch once after he begged us many times, and then regretted it when he nearly passed out at the sight of the blood in the vial.)
Ace: No no no no no no no......
Rocky: What? Make me bleed from my arm? (watching Ace’s reaction) No no no no....
Me: Wait! Just listen a minute. It’s to help Scooby. His blood is not working properly and they need to....(pause while I realise that mentioning the possibility of one of them having an operation will only increase the rising panic, so I decide to fudge the issue for now)...to give some of your blood to Scooby. Because you are his brothers and sister, your blood is nearly the same as his.
Turtle: (in mock horror) Whaaaat!? They want to take blood from one person and put it into someone else? Have those doctors gone crazy?!?
Me: No no no! It’s a very normal thing, they do it all the time. If someone hasn’t got enough good blood, they put more in and it makes them better. So you might be helping Scooby to get better.
Turtle: Aha, I see! So we would be sacrificing ourselves for the sake of our brother.
Me: Well, I wouldn’t quite put it that way...
Turtle: Come on men! Let us be strong! We will give up our lives in order to save our brother!
Me: Well, it’s not actually your life, it’s just a bit of blood...
Turtle: Hang on a minute - I have nosebleeds all the time! When I get there I’ll just punch myself in the nose and then the doctors can have loads of my blood!
Me: No, that’s okay! They only need a little bit and it has to be from your arm.
Ace: But I don’t want them to take my blood!
Rocky: Me too!
Turtle: (really hamming it up) But don’t you want to save your sick brother’s life?!
Me: Woah there, Mr Guilt Trip. That’s enough. Time to use plan B. You know boys, it would be a very very nice thing to do for Scooby. And sometimes when you do nice things for people, you might get a reward.
(All eyes sweep up to the
bribery reward charts)
Ace: You mean I might get more points?
Me: Maybe. If you were very good at having it done.
Ace: Wait! If I give Scooby my blood, can I get enough points for a new Skylander?
Me: I'm not sure about that. But for being extra brave you could get an extra treat.
Ace: You mean two Skylanders?
Me: No, I don’t mean...
Turtle: Oh I want one too!
Me: I thought you were doing it out of devotion to your brother?
Rocky: I want a new Bakugan!
Me: You’ll have to wait and see....
Ace: If I let them take more blood, I could get more Skylanders! Three or four or five...
Me: No, they just want one bit for now.
Ace: Wait! Scooby gets lots of presents because he’s poorly. So if I was poorly people would bring me Skylanders all the time! (gleefully) Mummy, how do I make myself get poorly?
Me: I don’t think....
Turtle: (helpfully) You could eat slugs!
Me: NO! Nobody is making themselves ill to try and get presents, and I need to talk to Daddy about what rewards there MIGHT be. I was thinking more like chocolate actually.
Baby: Choctot!! Me me!!
And that is how we persuaded the children that having a blood test was a good idea. And they were as good as gold. Chocolate was given at the scene and two Skylanders and a Bakugan followed shortly after. Ace has asked me several times since if he can do it again (out of the goodness of his heart, of course) so at least we know he’s over his fear of needles and blood.
Now we just have to wait and see if we make it through to the donor stage and if any of them will have an operation too. We’re saving up just in case, as I’m pretty sure that the price will be nothing less than a trip to Disneyland or an iPhone for the