Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later. I'm told it can't be avoided when you have little boys. Caleb has already had his Emergency Room visit (after whispering words like "brain infection" for a few hours they finally diagnosed him with a stiff neck), and Joshua earned his trip to Urgent Care after breakfast this morning when he was careening wildly through the house, tripped, and had an unfortunate and abrupt encounter with the edge of a step stool.

He was obviously hurt, although I didn't realize how badly, until I looked under his chin and saw an ENORMOUS gaping hole and the exposed layers of fat under his skin, and blood beginning to pour out.

Now at this point, a good mother would have remained calm and calmly told her children to get dressed and get in the car quickly. But this mother panicked and screamed in horror, putting fear into every little member of the household as she shouted at them: "Get your clothes on! Get dressed! We have to go somewhere!" But where? What is the protocol for getting stitches? Do you call the pediatrician? Go to Urgent Care? The ER? I did the only thing I could think of.

I called my mom. It seemed completely logical. Of course she would know exactly what do to (and it doesn't hurt that she is a registered nurse). She reassured me that it surely wasn't as bad as it must look. Somehow, even though she is more than a hundred miles away (and the doctor would later contradict her words), I felt much better and at least found the presence of mind to get out of my jammies and drive to Urgent Care.

At least my children know what to do in an emergency. Later Caleb told me, "When I had my underweaw on but not my shirt, I wemembered to pway."

But then I started having trouble remembering where Urgent Care was. It seemed to be much farther than I remembered and surely there had to be a closer one. And then I saw I huge sign: URGENT CARE. But it wasn't until I swerved through several lanes of traffic that I noticed the teeny tiny letters that said COMING SOON. What a stupid sign, I fumed. Nobody plans on going to the Urgent Care next month. When people need an Urgent Care, they need it RIGHT NOW when blood is running down their child's neck in the backseat.

We finally found it, and I later noticed how many people walked nonchalantly through the door as if they were going to the Post Office. We walked in barely out of jammies (one child still in them), with a masses of tangled hair and tears and blood gushing out everywhere. So maybe it was a tad dramatic, but I do think it gets you in a little sooner.

The doctor took one look at Joshua and grimaced. "Yikes, that looks bad...ooh, that's really bad." Don't they have to take some kind of class in medical school that covers things you should never to say to an upset mother about her child's face????

Caleb entertained Joshua with stories of his own trip to the "hopsible" when he had to get X-rays and drink yucky stuff and I asked the doctor about sedatives for when they did the stitches. "Nah," he said casually, "we can just get a bunch of people to hold him down." Yes, but I couldn't seem to make anybody understand how many times in his little life this child has already been held down kicking and screaming so adults could poke his mouth and face.

Just as they were getting ready to do the dreaded procedure the door opened and our hero arrived - Daddy! We had already decided to send Grace and Caleb out of the room and he valiantly offered to let me go out with them while he helped hold Joshua down.

I did feel guilty about this - after all, Phil has a history of nearly fainting during medical procedures involving both of our other children (at one point a lab shut down and couldn't see anymore patients until I showed up, only to find Phil sprawled out on the floor and Baby Caleb eating through all candy in the employee Christmas stockings) - but as he pushed me out the door I thought about all of the times I have held down screaming children for shots and reasoned that maybe all of that added together was worth something.

Five minutes and five stitches later I was ushered back in to find Joshua tear-streaked and still shaking with anger, but soon a toy, popsicles, and balloons were offered, and it seems a popsicle can cover a multitude of offenses.

I kept apologizing to Grace and Caleb for getting them so upset in the morning, but they responded graciously. "You don't have to keep saying sorry, Mom." Grace said. "I know what it feels like to be scared."

And I don't think I need to worry about Joshua being traumatized. As soon as we arrived home, he was back to running around wildly and trying to jump off everything, laughing recklessly all the while... At least now I know where Urgent Care is.


jnetntheboyz said...

You are hilarious Angie. How is Joshua now. I can't say that I'd react much differently than you did. Glad I finally figured out this whole blog thing and found you. jeanette

naimo family said...

mom always knows how to make everything better. she is the first person i call too... we sure are lucky.

HappyNomads said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
HappyNomads said...

Wow, well when we were wanting another post, we definietly weren't wishing for something like that to happen! but I have to admit Caleb always has a way of making everyone laugh and feel better!!