True, the pool was better this summer than last when I couldn’t keep McDiesel inside the pool fence, much less inside the pool (and outside the parking lot, golf cart barn, or fairway) for very long.

Still, this summer, I swear, people see us coming and call it a day. Because when McD comes to the pool, relaxation time is over.

Even though the pool is a place where it is expected (if not always acceptable) for kids to be loud and raucous, and it’s outdoors and should be one of McD’s best case scenarios, it is… not.

And not because he might fall in the deep end.

Just as sound is amplified as it travels over the uninhibited surface of water, the pool is a place that magnifies and intensifies the inconvenient and uninhibited superpowers of ADHD. McDiesel is pretty much just like other kids; just more. Other kids are running and jumping and shouting, just not as fast or as often or as dangerously or as loudly. He races around the slippery pool deck. Other kids fall; not McDiesel. He jumps in too close to the edge. Other kids bang their elbows or a knee; not McDiesel. He cannonballs into the hot tub. Adolescent girls indignantly point out he’s under 14 and not attended by an adult.

In his wake, parents cringe, neighborhood doyennes pack in their water aerobics and pack up their noodles, and I try to look like I have it all under control.

Which is clearly not the case. Other kids go potty in (like, inside) the pool, discretely and unbeknownst to their unsuspecting parents. Not McDiesel. He stands up on the edge, pulls down his swim trunks, and begins to pee–like a fountain–on his brother who is doing underwater handstands in 3 ft.

Pretty much just like other kids; just more. Amplified. Magnified. Intensified. More.

These are precarious situations: If I come hollering and running and waving my arms—giving in to reflex and horror—I call more attention to him doing whatever he’s doing (repeatedly bumping into a littler kid with his boogie board, spitting water at a little girl’s face, peeing into 3 ft). Generally speaking, this is the very last thing I want to do. But (and here’s the rub) if I don’t come hollering and running and waving my arms, appearances be damned, then he’s not going to stop.

 And if I’m not hollering and running and waving, then Big Bro–who has come up for air from his handstand–is. (E.g., “Mom! MomMOM! McDiesel is PEEING IN THE POOL! HE’S PEEING IN THE POOL!”)

No one’s reading in their chaises anymore.

So I try to harness my reflexes and quietly address McD’s behavior. (And Big Bro’s–justified but still hysterical–reaction.) Which, of course, McDiesel doesn’t put up with quietly. (E.g., “I was not! I was NOT PEEING IN THE POOL!”)

Either way, we are a scene at the pool. Either way, no one is reading in their chaises.

And (I must say, despite having promised Husband Number-One I wouldn’t), thanks to Husband Number-One and a two-day roadtrip earlier in the summer, McD knows the F Word and isn’t afraid to use it. Especially when it will glide over the placid water of the pool effortlessly at high volume, not even in the least absorbed by interfering tree leaves, and directly into the ears of the remaining doyennes. (E.g., “I was NOT PEEING IN THE POOL, you F-IN’ IDIOT!”)

A neighbor friend (who was not present for the fountain) says you just notice more when it’s your kids. Wouldn’t that be nice.

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