Today my oldest is taking her first sick day of first grade. Yes, first grade has been in session less than a month, but still. I woke her up in plenty of time to get dressed, eat breakfast, collect her homework, etc. etc., and she immediately started crying. This is rare for her, she usually just yawns, says she's really tired, and then wonders if she can wear her yellow butterfly shirt again, even though she's worn it twice in the last week. Well, today, her back hurts. She's having difficulty stretching it out, and the thought of getting dressed was just too much for her to handle. This is a new one for me. When I was sick, deliberately or otherwise, I had a headache, my throat hurt, or my personal favorite "tummyache". When I got older, the tummyache excuse turned to cramps - after all, what kind of mother would make her daughter go to school when clearly she should be wrapped around a hot water bottle for the day? (apparently my kind of mother, the excuse worked once, then she started sending me to school with Advil) Then I learned how to make myself throw up, a nasty experience, but 10 minutes of grossness translated into going back to sleep and avoiding tests. But a sore back? I never had that. I do remember once having a really sore neck, which developed into a fever that sent me to bed for three days. So I am letting her rest, then I will put her in the shower for a while, maybe give her a little Children's Motrin, and see if she's feeling well enough to go in the afternoon. But I can't help but wonder if the sore back is going to show up more often now that she knows it means climbing in Mommy's bed and watching PBS in the morning instead of going to school. She missed one day of kindergarten last year because she was sick, and she was really mad that I didn't let her go that day. So I am letting the sore back thing fly today, because it's not a pattern, at least not yet. Plus, I really think her back hurts. She's not making it up......today. So what have your kids come up with to avoid school? And what did you do about it? What did you as a child that worked or didn't work? I had the throw up thing, but that was so nasty I only used it in extreme situations, and would often spend the "sick day" doing the overdue homework that necessitated staying home. My husband would just occasionally tell his mother he was taking a "mental health day" and she would let him, since he didn't do it a lot, and let's face it, everybody needs a mental health day now and again. I just didn't know first graders needed them.