Today my son had his first trip to Urgent Care. I am fully aware that every child will have their fair share of bumps and bruises (and even an ER visit or two), but I was completely unprepared for this to happen, obviously.
Let me fill you in on what happened…
Because we are moving in 3 weeks, I figured I could start packing up some stuff that we weren’t really using. I decided to start in our bedroom since the furniture in there we went ahead and sold to some friends who will pick it up while we are out of town after Jude’s birthday. Dresser drawers were filled with miscellaneous things that I figured I could go ahead and pack, so I grabbed Jude and a couple of boxes and sat down to box stuff up. While I was doing this, I was aware that my son was busy pulling basically everything off a small metal rolling cart we got from Ikea. He does this on a regular basis, much to my chagrin, but I figured, what the heck….he’s helping. Then I hear a loud smack, then a cry, and I turn around to see him crying on the floor behind me.
Now, understand that he is 11-months old and started walking about a month ago. He’s been wobbling around on the furniture for several months. That “smack” was not a new sound. That being said, I scooped him up to console him only to see him open his mouth to scream and bright black-red blood pouring from his tiny mouth.
This was not a small amount of blood. This was blood that was literally streaming from his mouth as he screamed. I quickly set him down on his back, peeled open his mouth to see what happened, and my first thought was, “Oh my gosh…he’s knocked his teeth out.” I can’t see them because of the copious amounts of blood, and I assume the worst.
I begin to sob as I try to understand what is happening to my child, all the while asking out loud, “Why is there so much blood?!” I not so calmly call my husband, who’s on the road, and try to explain that our son has hurt himself and I don’t know what to do.
TIME OUT….I consider myself an intelligent human who has a great ability to be logical and reasonable under pressure, and here I am losing it over the phone to my husband who is 400 miles away.
He very calmly tells me that I need to relax, and to go ahead and assess the damage. He is going to call my mother-in-law as well as our pediatrician for help. While he makes the calls that I was incapable of, I’m marching around my house, cradling my weeping child, both of us covered in a large amount of blood, waiting for my husband to tell me what to do next, sobbing.
Needless to say, I did calm down and stop sobbing, my mother-in-law drove with me to the Urgent Care center at the hospital, and my son is just fine apart from the torn frenulum between his gum and upper lip (it’s a giant hole people), and someone came home with a box of really good popsicles. I know that these type of things are accidents, and that even though this is the first one, it won’t be the last. (Have I mentioned there was a lot of blood?) But I panicked. As everything unfolded, I felt completely alone and unsure of myself and my abilities. And I am unsure why.
Let me clarify that I’m not being hard on myself, I’m just being honest with you.
As I continued throughout the rest of my day, a heard from a couple people (mostly family), asking how Jude was. I explained what happened and that he was busy sharing his strawberry popsicle with the dog. But one girlfriend of mine swung by the house and quickly checked in with me, dropping off a small gift for the both of us. A “Get Well” card for Jude complete with stuffed bunny and DVD, and for me there was pumpkin tea and a candle. She told me to not sweat it, that it will happen again, and that if I needed anything to call her. Then she told me that I wasn’t a horrible, uncaring mother, just the mother of an 11-month old. As I opened the gifts in my kitchen, I cried. It was a small moment, in the chaos of my day, where I felt as though someone understood. And because of that small gesture, I was able to let go of the crisis, and move forward to now.
I am not a perfect mother, nor do I believe that I ever will be.
I cannot see all, hear all, or stop all.
There will be a time (or times) that I will mend a bleeding lip, a bumped head, or a broken heart.
There will be more scrapes, bruises, and breaks, and I will be right there.
And every time, from here on out, I will not do my best not to panic. I might cry, but I will try not to panic.
My son will be fine.
So will I.
The Ikea cart, however, may be found near a dumpster. 😉
Thank you Amanda for your heart and your gift. Your gesture was just what this weeping mother needed.