Thursday, May 31, 2012

Because You Just Can't Be Too Careful

The day of The Incident
 I am like a sunblock-ing maniac. I love the sun--LOVE the sun. I love how it feels to lay out next to water until you sweat. I love being at the pool or on the beach for hours and hours. I love everything about summer, but I refuse to look like a piece of shoe leather when I'm "older", so, we limit our sun time, and I attack every available, exposed skin surface on myself, The Husband, and The Shorties to a liberal dose of high-octane 45+ sunblock every time I even think we might possibly be in close proximity to some sunlight.

Every moisturizer I own has an SPF of 15 or higher. The lowest SPF on sunblock in my cabinet is 45. We are serious about our sunblock at Casa Johnson. It's like wearing a seat belt. Only idiots don't wear seat belts and don't sunblock, therefore, we obviously sunblock.

I am especially diligent in this sun blocking protection post The Husband's encounter with Mr. Melanoma. There's something especially disturbing about knowing your spouse had cancer cut off of his face and looking at your son who is covered in the same quantity of moles that his daddy has. (In fact, it's making me itch to get out the sun sticks right now even though everyone is in bed, and we aren't anywhere near the outdoors.) So, we live to Sunblock and Sunblock Again.

The kids just lu-hu-hu-hu-uv that. It stinks, it's sticky, it's cold, and why-do-we-have-to accompanied by mucho moaning and groaning (as though they might actually talk me out of it this time). Lillian is the worst. She use to run from me, but now she just stands there, shoulders sagging, and berates the sunblock as though it were a person. And every single time she asks, "But WHYYYY do we have to use the sunblock??? I HATE it!"

Well, life lesson number 7,905 occurred on Memorial Day. I'd slathered half a gallon of the stuff on the kids, but somehow between the ribs and baked beans I neglected that Put More On Every Hour and After Swimming rule and let the kids go almost two hours without re-applying. (And I don't even have the Too Much Beer excuse to fall back on--I just flat out forgot, proving that even the most diligent mom out there can have a lapse.) Ahem.

And you know what that means: Sunburn.  And Lillian got the brunt of that party on her shoulders. I turned her around to let her view her crispy shoulder blades in the mirror and said, "Sweet Cake? THAT is why we sunblock."

She moaned and took the Tylenol and let me rub some of that aloa vera sunburn gel on her little toasty back. Bless her heart, she had two little raw strips of pink flesh that hurt me just looking at them. It's the only time she's ever been even remotely burned in her whole little life. It must have been quite the shock.

We're getting ready to go to Wal-Mart for groceries this morning, and Sugar said, "Wait! We have to sunblock my arms and face!" I explained that going into a store didn't really mandate a full-body sunblocking. She looked at me funny and said, "Yes, but we aren't taking any more chances."

I told her that she'd be fine. Twenty minutes later, armed with purse, sunglasses, coupons, I called for the Little Flower to come on so that we could go to the store. I can't say that I was surprised to smell her before she rounded the corner. I'm not sure if it was the entire bottle of sunblock she'd put head to toe on her body (even in her hair) or if the smell was emanating from the four stuffed animals that she'd also drenched before stuffing them into a drawstring bag.

I stared at her for a second or two, unable to figure out where to start, finally just saying, "So, the stuffed animals too?"

She nodded. "You just can't be too careful with the sun," she said over her shoulder as she marched out to buckle everyone into the Family Truckster.

Amen, Sister.

Okay then. Off to Wally World. You'll smell us before you see us. We'll be the family who took a bath in Eau de Sun Sport 50.

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