Saturday, May 13, 2006

Emergency Room Memories

Jeana's last meme, in which she mentions a couple of hospital visits, reminded me of all the time we spent in ERs during her childhood. There was a summer during which we were on a first-name basis with the ER staff.

A neighborhood child hit Scott in the face with a stick that had a nail in it, and hair-lipped him, resulting in bleeding, stitches, and a scar which has faded eventually, although at that time I thought he was hopelessly disfigured.

Jeana flopped belly-first into a swing (which some jerk had set as a booby trap--he took the hooks out of their holders, then set them carefully in place so that when someone got into the swing, it would fall off), which sent her flying through the air face-first into a tree, resulting in major facial damage. Fortunately, after the blood was cleaned up, the damage was not lasting, and didn't leave any scars, other than the damage to my nerves, and a hopelessly blood-stained blouse which had to be trashed.

A neighbor's child (not the same one) threw a brick at Scott, hitting him in the head. I was busy sewing, making a play outfit for Jeana, when the said child appeared on my doorstep. Peering through the screen door, she said, "My mama wants you to come to our house." I said, "I will, as soon as I finish what I am doing here." She said, "Well, okay, but Scott is bleeding all over Mama's gold velvet chair." Concussion, unconsciousness, bloodstained chair, bloodstained towels (several), bloodstained car, and more stitches.

Jeana's daddy made her a lovely cradle for her dolls, big enough for Jeana *and* the dolls, as well as all her stuffed animals. Jeana for some reason decided to stand upon the side of the cradle, which of course rocked violently, resulting in the side of the cradle colliding with Jeana's mouth, which resulted in blood stained dolls, blankets, towels, and stitches. Fortunately, those were her baby teeth, and she eventually grew some lovely new adult ones.

A neighbor's child (the same one who threw the brick) talked Jeana into drinking motor oil. Her daddy had poured some into the lawn mower, and left the open can on a shelf. Jeana loved butter, and the motor oil was a lovely golden color, like melted butter. She came in the house with motor oil all over her face, hands, hair, and clothes, and told me she didn't feel very good. Once I figured out what she had consumed, I was on the phone to the poison control center. The nice lady asked me how much oil did she drink? I said, "I don't know, I wasn't measuring it." She then told me to stay calm (too late), and not to make her throw up, because she could inhale the oil into her lungs, and there is no antidote for that. At that precise moment, my baby girl was throwing up on the floor at my feet. I left the phone dangling, threw her into the car, and raced to the ER, where they strapped my baby to a papoose board and pumped her stomach. They made me stay in the hall, because I was crying so hard. I could hear her gagging and retching, and then her tiny little voice, saying, "Oh P'ease don't do dat again!"
When they released her from the hospital, the doctor said, "Give us a call if anything goes wrong." I said, "like what?" He said, "oh, well, you know, like if she stops breathing or anything."
I spent the night sitting on the side of her little bed, alternately putting my hand in front of her face, and holding a mirror in front of her nose, to see if she was still breathing.
All of this was when they were little children, before baseball (more concussions), football (broken bones, *more* concussions), and a car wreck (suspected broken neck, still *more* concussion, and a partial scalping).

And the people from Child Protective Services very kindly did not arrest us, after their investigation.


Praying for your Prodigal said...

Oh my goodness! typical home! We have had our share of ER visits...had the ocassional home visits as well from our friend who is a DR.

Geesh! It's amazing, isn't it, that they arrive to adulthood safe and sound!

Thanks for the memories. Have a GREAT Mother's Day!


Nikky said...

You certainly deserve a tremendous:


for surviving all that!!!!!!!!!


We Love You!
Nikky & Ron

Carol said...

Woah. Lotsa ER visits. I don't think there was a poison control hotline when I was a kid.

Did CPS really investigate y'all? Crazy.

Jan said...

Yup. It seems that there is some kind of law that if your kids are in the ER more than X number of times in X amount of time, you get investigated. They were very nice about it, though. And since most of these incidents happened outside, in public, with other witnesses, instead of inside the house with no one else but us, we got off with a lecture about how we just have to be more vigilant, since we obviously have "adventurous" children.