Baby’s 1st ER visit…

Warning: this would make me from 2 years ago queasy… talk of blood ahead.

getting his haircut while watching Frozen in a toy car… kids' cuts places are adorable!

getting his haircut while watching Frozen in a toy car… kids’ cuts places are adorable!

So we all know Mondays can be a bit of a drag, but I was having a pretty damn good one. I unexpectedly won an online giveaway, I took my son to the library time he loves and has missed the last two weeks while we did camp and we sang songs and checked out books, we got him his first haircut! I was ready for an afternoon of play and memorizing lines and maybe a baking project… Then my son broke through our child proofing (yes. as in we have tried 3 different locks on cabinets and he figures all of them out within a week. I think we have to cave and buy the kind with a key or magnetic keys that cost a fortune…) and I watched in horror as if in slow-motion as he got into our recycle can, grabbed the tomato can sitting on top of the pile, proceeded to stick his hand into it and then SCREAM as he pulled it out.

what our new childproofing system will need to look like… this image went through my head while waiting on hold with 911

He’d caught the lid of the can and lacerated his pinkie before I could count to three. as I ran to him thinking I’d need to find a bandaid and start nap time early, I was shocked to find blood spilling down his hand and leaving drops on the ground that were adding up fast. I had no idea such a little hand could have so much blood in it! I tried not to panic but the more blood that came out the harder that was. I couldn’t think of if I should call the ER or the doctor’s office and every bandaid I tried to put on him got soaked through and fell off so I finally just decided on good old fashioned 911. FIRST of all, the phone rang so long that I thought I’d dialed the wrong number. SECOND I got a message saying all operators were busy (didn’t even know that happened… let alone on a monday early afternoon) and FINALLY the dispatcher transferred me to the local fire department dispatcher who sent them on the way to my house, told me to quit trying with the bandaids, and suggested I grab a thick, clean cloth to wipe around his hand while I elevated it up high. So I did that while we waited for the fire department to come. I also sang nursery rhymes and bounced around.

Seeing that he was not losing consciousness or going pale reassured me that he was probably going to be just fine which was when all the secondary smaller fears crept in. I had a series of absurd thoughts bouncing around my head. Aside from feeling like a terrible mother, I had the very distinct panic of “he loves the piano and he just wrecked his hands. What if I’ve ruined all his dreams and his future?!” Then I thought “Screw you recycling! I’m never doing something nice for the earth again!” Then I thought “I’m never going to eat tomatoes again without tasting guilt. I should throw out the salsa in our fridge right now” all that while singing twinkle twinkle little star…

This is a picture of the actual place we went. So thankful we were referred to a pediatric ER instead of a regular ER. His hospital band even had Elmo on it…


My brave and crazy little superhero…

The firemen arrived- LOTS of them. 4 of them came into the house and i found myself apologizing for the crumbs on the floor from lunch which seemed odd. I told them what happened and tried my best not to cry but I was feeling pretty lousy. One of the firemen told me that if I was feeling like a bad mom I shouldn’t have because a bad mom would have dismissed the kid and let the wound try to heal on it’s own before bringing him in. That helped but barely. I was told my son would need stitches and to get him to the pediatric ER. They bandaged up his whole hand in the meantime. I tried really hard to focus not he cross streets he gave me for the nearest one but ended up getting lost on the way there anyway. When we made it there, we waited while they took all the normal vitals- height, weight, seemingly endless info and then we got our matching hospital bracelets and were taken back to our triage room. There was definitely some waiting but way less than if we’d gone to a normal ER. Still, I was glad we’d brought his kermit puppet with us to distract him.The good news was that they decided glue might work as well if not better than stitches (bonus, we can take the glue off ourselves instead of going back in to have stitches removed!) and the baby got a popsicle to calm him down while the glue dried.

Here’s hoping our next ER visit won’t be for a LONG time…. in spite of both the firemen and the doctors at the ER telling me to expect a lot more as they were looking at my son bouncing around the room post-injury and trying to climb the hospital bed… there’s a lot of wonderful things about a child with little fear, but there are definitely some consequences as well…

We’re home now. I’m not going to bake anything today. I’m going to wait for my husband to get home  and then go to yoga and follow it up with a nice big margarita… and probably crying a few more times over incredible mommy guilt. Still… Just thankful that little guy is doing ok!


8 thoughts on “Baby’s 1st ER visit…

  1. Blood in any quantity coming out of someone you love can be terrifying. How awful from your little baby!

    But I did want to say one thing. There’s a lot of comments about how good a mom you are, and your own fear about if you’re a good enough mom. I’m just going to state back what I’m seeing going on here.

    Things I see from what you wrote:

    Taking your baby to storytime at the library
    Getting his haircut at a place it looks like took really good care of him
    Childproofing your doors several different ways to protect your baby
    Seeing it happen, which means you had your eyes on your child

    At the time of the incident I see you:

    Looking out for him by singing,
    Doing your best to care for his hurt yourself,
    Calling for help,
    Getting help, and having the wearwithall to follow instructions
    Getting your son to an unknown ER when you’re in significant emotional turmoil
    Continuing to care for him even when you were waiting for professional help

    Amanda? I don’t know what this looks like to you, but it looks like flippin excellent parenting to me, it also looks like a lot of love. That’s a ton of things that you did to take care of a ton of different needs of your child. Being scared at the time and about all the what ifs is totally natural, but from my perspective? There’s no need for fear about your parenting.

    Love to you all.


    • Clara,
      This comment was perfect. Thank you. I was holding it together pretty well until it was time to go to bed and then just felt awash with guilt all over again. It was really helpful to wake up to this and try to move forward. As a recovering perfectionist, it’s hard to see that all the good adds up and matter more than I sometimes think. It also helped to remember that I fell off the counter when I was younger than he is and had to get multiple stitches and don’t remember it/came out just fine. Still hard to look at his poor little hand and see it all messed up for now 😦


      • Anytime, love. Your child getting in an accident doesn’t mean you did a single thing wrong. It means your kid is a kid. This stuff happens. The first time I took one of the PEGs to the ER I was so terrified I could barely drive. By the end of my time in PEG I’d taken so many trips that it was easy to be calm, ask the girls the right questions, bring what makes sense to keep them as comfortable as possible. That was a lot of ER trips, and not a one of them was anything bad enough to inflict any kind of long term health issue. I know that it’s not always the case. and I’m sincerely hoping that you won’t have so many trips that you get casual about it, but I think that even the second time you’re called to this kind of situation–be it for Desmond or anyone else–it will be easier.


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