Kamrin, on the other hand, has been to the emergency rooms more times in his four years than I ever have been in my entire life. Disaster just seems to find him. I wish the ER would give us some kind of deal, like, "Visit four times and your fifth one is FREE!" or give us a punch card so we could earn frequent flier miles. The first time he was about two. I got the dreaded call from daycare that starts out, "Just let me first say, everything is fine, but...". Turns out he was trying to climb over the baby gate at the bottom of the stairs when his foot slipped and he landed full force on his chin. Since I was new to the traumatic experience thing, I called Shawn on my cell phone as I left work and raced out the door. I told him what had happened and could he wait outside of our house so he'd be ready to jump in the car after I picked Kam up. Better yet, just meet me at the clinic. My provider had done an excellent job of applying the butterfly bandage, so when I got there it didn't look all that bad. Shawn was waiting for me and we were able to see the doctor together. I was silently congratulating myself for staying so calm...until she took the bandages off. I could see how deep the gash was and now it was starting to bleed again. I'm not good with blood. After announcing that he would indeed need stitches, she turned and asked if both Shawn and I were going to stay in the room to help hold him down. Hold him down? What kind of barbaric hospital was this? I was struggling just to keep myself from gagging. I told her that Shawn would be able to help, but I wasn't the best when it came to these things. I was exiled to the lobby. I could hear him screaming all the way out there. I sat there clutching his little coat to my face and tried not to cry. Kamrin avoided Shawn for the next week. Wouldn't even let him near his chin,which meant that I had to do all the bandaid changes and cleaning. I was overcoming my fear of blood. Shawn is the youngest of six boys, so he is all too familiar with the interior workings of the ER. It didn't phase him a bit. In fact, after the allotted time, Shawn waited until Kamrin was asleep, snipped the stitches and pulled them out with a tweezers. Kam didn't even wake up.
Then came the ear infections. What is it about ear infections that they only show themselves after 10PM? Inevitably, Kaiden would already be asleep so Shawn would stay home while I bundled up a screaming child and drove him to the ER. After the first couple of times, I began to recognize an ear infection and wondered why I couldn't just go to the drive through pharmacy and pick up the medication myself? But no, you have to see a doctor and sit there while he tells you what you already know. By the time we'd get home, Kamrin would be sound asleep in the carseat and I'd be looking at the clock wondering how I would be able to get up in two hours. A couple of the ear infections did happen during the day, so we would have Kaiden pack a bag with books or toy cars so he would have something to do in the waiting room.
The second set of stitches came when Kamrin decided to open a bag of fruit snacks by himself...with a knife. I was downstairs on the computer at the time when Kaiden came running down to tell me that Kamrin cut himself and I better come quick. Seeing the blood run out of his finger as Shawn held it under the faucet made wonder if I really had conquered my fear. So again, we throw some things in a bag for Kaiden and we're on our way to the ER. Shawn again must hold him down while Kaiden and I are in the lobby and again, Kamrin avoids his dad for well over a week. Once more, Shawn removes the stitches in the dead of night with a small flashlight device strapped to his head, armed with a tiny scissors and tweezers.
The third time doom found him, I was working in my home office, which doesn't have any carpeting only a cement floor. I was continuously telling Kamrin not to touch this or that. He found a large ceramic cat and was pushing it around on a chair with wheels. After the fourth or fifth time telling him to put it back there was a loud crash. I looked over just in time to see him step on a large shard. I scooped him up in my arms to run him upstairs. Kaiden met us half way wondering what the crash was. He took one look at Kamrin's foot and said, "I'll go pack my bag." I came home and the passage from office to bathroom looked like a murder scene. Droplets of blood up the stairs and swipes of it on the walls where his foot had touched.
Having two boys, I've become acclimated to the spills, falls, scrapes and cuts they encounter. I bought a heavy-duty first aid kit and now if there's a loud thunk followed by screaming, I hold them close, ask them if there's any blood. If not, they'll be okay. I dread the broken bones that are bound to come. After all, is it any wonder when I let them play outside I peek out the window to see Kamrin in a toy box with wheels and his brother pushing him at full speed down our sidewalk? Or the way they push their limits to see just how far up the tree they can be before finding the courage to jump? I've seen both of them on occasion run smack into a closed door, just because they weren't watching where they were going.
I may come across as uncaring if I don't rush to their side every time they fall down or bump into something. But I've becoming pretty good at recognizing a really hurt cry versus one that merely needs a bandaid.
Kaiden came up to me the other day and told me that he wants to play football. I told him he could be the kicker. Please, Lord, don't let him ask to play hockey.