Thursday, August 21, 2008

Ten Stitches in Time

So yesterday was pretty interesting. After I got off work I stopped at home for a brief minute and then ran some errands. I got a call from Matt (my nineteen-year-old) a short time later.
"Where are you?"
"I'm over by the church. I just have to stop at the post office and then I'll be home."
"Forget the post office. You need to come home now."
My stomach clenched. Come to find out, Paul, my eleven-year-old, had just mopped the kitchen floor. I know, remarkable, but that's not why I had to get home. When Paul was through, he walked across the wet kitchen floor, slipped, and smashed his face against the floor. Matt told me he was definitely going to need stitches. I asked the usual questions: was he conscious? Was there a lot of blood? I told Matt to sit Paul down, apply gentle pressure and I would be home as fast as possible.
When I got in the house, I found Paul sitting on the couch with a dish towel against his face. I pulled it back to see the most gaping hole I could imagine in someone's forhead. The skin had split along the eyebrow, almost two inches. It was wide open and very deep. I tried not to cry. He also had a black eye, red swollen face and cheekbone. Immediately I worried about fractures. Thank goodness the hospital is less than two miles away!
In the emergency room I peeled back the towel and showed the triage nurse. Thankfully they didn't make us wait long. Ten stitches and a CAT scan later we found out there were no broken bones. But in the meantime ...
The physician's assistant that took care of Paul didn't seem to care for our story. He kept asking Paul over and over what happened. Did anyone see him fall? Did he hit something on the way down? Did he lose consciousness? Did anyone see him? What happened again? Did he remember the incident? I wasn't sure if he was checking Paul's recall and memory, or if he thought I'd clocked my son with something. It didn't help that I was just in there three weeks ago with another of my sons who had a broken collarbone. I'm beginning to get nervous about taking my children in to the emergency room anymore. That's our third visit in five months. These things tend to make us look questionable.
So the upshot is, Paul will be fine although he has an awful headache. Also, shortly before he got hurt he and Joel were skating across the wet kitchen floor. Supposedly that entertainment stopped before the incident in question. Umhmmm. How on earth can I possibly explain to the medical profession that this is normal behaviour in a house full of boys? Maybe I'll think up an explanation on my next trip.

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