When you have boys, there's always the thought in the back of your mind that you could end up in the ER at any point with a broken bone, foreign object stuck somewhere, or a gash that needs stitches. Boys are so rough and tumble! And every once in a while, you run into a kid like my Cassie. I have yet to have to stitch up either of the boys. Today, Cassie had her second trip to the ER for stitches.
Now here is what I don't understand. Why can't boys just tell her that they like her? Why do they have to do stupid things like, oh I don't know, chase her around the school parking lot? That's what happened today; a boy was chasing her, she was running, tripped, fell, and took a header into the curb. OUCH! She split her chin open, to the bone.
I was deep into some PTA Treasurer stuff when she called. Here's what I heard "Mom, I'm sorry I'm late, but I fell and I cut my shin open" Maybe I heard knee, but I was definitely thinking lower extremity and that it wasn't very serious. "Ok, honey," I said "Just come on home, you're not in trouble for being late, don't worry about it. And don't worry about calling unless you're going to be later than 5. See you soon."
20 minutes later, she comes in the door, holding onto her chin. She and I talk about something while I'm picking up the living room because my friend, Ann, was stopping by. I didn't even look up at her, but sent her over to Dave for him to check out the cut on her knee. He tells her to wash it off and come back so we can get a better look at it. Then he says something to me about it being pretty bad and I decided to finally pay attention and saw that it was her CHIN. Insert huge DOH face here. Oh my god, I felt terrible. She wasn't crying when she called and she didn't say that it had been bleeding for AN HOUR, so I really thought it was something minor. She tilts her head back and I see lots of red and WHITE. Bone. Ugh, I could faint.
Just then, Ann comes over. Ann is a registered nurse. I love having a close friend who is a registered nurse. She never seems annoyed at my questions and I call her a lot with questions. I asked her to take a look at Cassie and she said "Oh yeah, you need stitches." Ugh squared.
So, Cassie grabs a wet washcloth and a book, we give Zack his hug and kiss that he demands and it's off to the Emergency Room. Our local hospital has an entire ER for Pediatrics only. It's a godsend, I tell you. They took her right back, the nurse checked her out and explained the process for stitches. Wow, I thought, that's fast, I'm really impressed that she didn't have to wait for a doctor to get started. As she was telling us about this new numbing gel that they have, a doctor did come in and looked at the cut as well. He reiterated what the nurse told us. They put the gel on, wait 45 minutes, then stitch her up and we're gone.
Wait a second. I'm seriously going to get a child in and out of the ER in less than 90 minutes? I'll believe it when I see it. So, in comes the nurse with the gel, they get it all gooped onto her, slap on some tape to keep it there and tell her not to touch it, relax, watch some tv, and they will stitch her up in 45 minutes.
Cassie and I had a great time, if you can have a fun time in a hospital room, talking and watching That 70s Show on the tv. Sure enough, 45 minutes later, in came the doctor and his 16 year old assistant. Turns out he goes to Cassie's high school. He's doing some kind of internship and he got to cut the thread after the stitches. I thought that was pretty cool, actually.
There is something extremely unnerving about watching someone stitch up your child. Now, my mind was fully aware that she could not feel anything, but I cringed every time he put the needle into her chin. I was fascinated, yet very uneasy and I didn't want to look. But, I was drawn to it. Amazing how I could see the bone one minute, then she was all fixed up the next. Almost all fixed up. The doctor still had the antibiotic gel and bandages to put on. I have to change the bandage twice a day for 4 days, so I was sure to pay attention.
A few care instructions, forms to sign, and we were done. In 1 hour 25 minutes. That has to be a record!
Did I mention that she's got her first Homecoming dance on Saturday night? At least the stitches match her dress.