After just one night, as the second evening approached, the camp called. It was the nurse.

“Jack has a stomach ache. Is this normal?”

“Well, maybe?”

Jack is our baby. He’s 11. He’s a mama’s boy. And he’s at sleep away camp.
My heart is aching.

She has me talk to him.

“What is it, Jacko?” I ask.

He’s crying. “My stomach really, really hurts.”

“Did you poop yesterday… today?” I ask.

“No. It just hurts.”

Then he mumbles something.

“What?” I ask.

“Never mind,” he says. “Nothing.”

My heart is breaking. I want to go get him. That would make me feel better. But it’s probably not what’s good for him.

I put on my big girl/big mama panties. “Well, how ‘bout you lay low tonight, and if you still have a stomach ache in the morning, have the nurse call me back.”

“With a wavering voice, he says, “Okay.”

I talk to the nurse again. He has no fever. No tenderness anywhere. She’ll call if needed, in the morning. Otherwise, no news is good news.

Oh, this hurts.


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