Saturday, July 21, 2012

Inside-Out-Phantom-Limb-Syndrome

Okay Ripley's...believe it or not, I have discovered a new syndrome called the inside-out-phantom-limb-syndrome:


The LACK OF perception of sensations in an arm or leg long before the limb has been injured, bumped, bruised, or amputated. The inside-out-phantom-limb-syndrome is relatively common in toddlers and preschoolers, especially in the early months after turning 4. The syndrome is exacerbated by hunger and fatigue.


Here is how it presents. Let's take a hypothetical 4-year-old child named, um, "Giles." Giles hops out of the car to go into his house for lunch, and all of a sudden, he believes he has no legs.

He screams to a parent:
"I CAN'T WALK! I DON'T HAVE SOME LEGS!!!"

Sage parent retorts:
"Yes you do Miles Giles. I see them right here." (She places her hand on his legs to confirm that they have not, in fact, run off and eloped with each other somewhere on the west coast or something.)

He argues:
"NO, I DON'T HAVE SOME LEGS, AND I DON'T HAVE FEET. I CAN'T WAAAALK!"

There are variations of the syndrome. Sometimes it presents as:

"I don't have any arms. Pick me up!"
"I can't walk. My legs disappeared."
Or my favorite: "I can't talk! I have no words!"

In the beginning it was kind of funny. Then it got sort of stale...and now it just grates on me.

Listen, I know Giles expresses his fears and frustrations through this syndrome. I get that it is his way of obtaining control in a world that, at times, scares the poop out of him (insert a potty reference here that I am REFRAINING from making...). But kid, you cannot fool me; syndromes are the hypotheses of ailments. It ain't no theory, and I am not buying it.

Good thing I selectively have no ears and tell him that I cannot hear.

Touche, Giles...touche.






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