Tuesday, May 6th 2008
Injury Quota Reached. And Exceeded. All Today.

Well.  I no longer have the mental image of the naked woman at kickboxing.  In its place is the far more horrifying image of the bloody innards of Seth-2yr’s left knee. 

This morning I put Caden-4yr and Seth-2yr into the bath with loads of toys.  I also gave them those specially-made-for-showers-because-they-are-unbreakable mirrors.   Except that they weren’t.  Those mirrors were the good, old fashioned ones made up of potential shards. 



Seth-2yr yells “Mommay!”  (he says ‘mommy’ usually, but if it’s urgent for any reason at all he switches to ‘mommay‘) Caden-4yr yelled, “Byood!”  (He doesn’t say the ‘l’ sound.)   

And boy was there a lot of byood.  Seth-2yr was screaming and crying and I got him out and put him on the bathmat and could not decide if i should a) attend to the large amounts of blood or b) figure out where it came from because my Mommy Guilt was already out of control and I was sure it was my fault somehow, but it was still unclear precisely how.  I opted for both a and b, at the same time, which may have slightly delayed the realization of how bad that cut was.   Again. Oops. 

Then I put on my Extreme Game Face.  This involves sky high eyebrows, a higher than normal pitched voice (side effect of valiently trying to deny inner hysteria), and huge Miss USA smile that has no place in that reality.  But there it was.  I explained to the boys that it would be very important to give the leg a nice squeeze to make the bleeding stop, and showed how to do that with a navy bathtowel. 

I’m not really good with blood.  I don’t know a lot about cuts.  LaLa and I were saying just last week how the two of us went through one box of bandaids BETWEEN US in our entire childhoods. It was always the same box in the cabinet.  It didn’t get a lot of traffic.  That’s the kind of daring we were.

I’m probably one of the most overprotective mommies I know just so my kids can avoid unnecessary bleeding, crying, and hurting.  But this? This was a gash.  There were layers and chunks I did not recognize as skin, or maybe they were a little more important and deeper than that.  No idea. 

My lips were sticking to my teeth because I’d been smiling so wide,  so I tried to make a more normal face, but I just couldn’t.  I told the boys that the Applying Pressure phase was similar to a nice, firm hug.  Seth-2yr gave me a  dirty look and screamed louder.  Hey. I’m not good at analogies, never have been. 

Every time I pulled the towel back to look at the cut, Seth-2yr would scream his head off. Then I’d cover it up and he’d politely say, “thank you!”  Again. And again. Then I turned to Caden-4yr and said, “The next step, with a big owie, is to go see a doctor, so can you go get dressed?”   Caden-4yr looked at me for a second and then asked, “Why are you talking like that?”  I tried to close my huge smile and he ran off to get dressed in record time.   

I slapped an enormous bandage on the knee, hoping it would be so large that the blood would not come through to the front and then start Seth-2yr off again on hysterics.  As I put him in the car, though, I could see it was already barely starting to show through.  I whispered to Caden-4yr, “Let’s not talk about the blood or the cut. It really bothers Seth-2yr, okay?” 


More hysteria from Seth-2yr at this point. 

There isn’t traffic where I live.  Today, at that exact moment. There was.  A big truck had to back out onto a road and traffic in both directions had to stop.  Then the traffic lights were out, causing further chaos. 

Mike, the Calmer One In Times of Vomit and Blood, is out of town.  So he calls the clinic ahead of my arrival and probably says, “My wife is coming in with two little boys. She’s pretty crazy right now and her face may be frozen into a fake smile. Please don’t be fooled by that, and look at my kid’s knee as soon as they get there.”

They look at the knee as soon as we get there.  The nurse says the bleeding has stopped (it hadn’t), and told us to have a seat.  Where we waited for an hour, with favorite stuffed animal puppies and blankets we’d brought from home.  The boys watched Dora the Explorer on the television in the waiting room and I stared off into space and noticed that my insides were shaking.    A few minutes later Caden-4yr turned to look at me and said, “Mommy.  Zat is the strangest thing.”  [remember that Caden-4yr is the kid with the really thick, unexplainable Austrian accent]  He looks at me closely and says, “Your eyes leaked.  Two drops.  They… they dripped. They dripped drops.”  He leans closer and says, “Why would they do that? Is there something wrong with your eyes?” 

I brushed away the tears and wondered why he somehow didn’t recognize them as tears.  Then I noticed my face aching.  Ahh.  I was smiling again, with the sky high eyebrows.  And my face was such a bizarre contradiction, that he simply did not consider that those would be tears.  This of course launched me into a silent heaping of self condemnation about how FREAKY that is and what long term effects has this morning already had on both of them WITHOUT their mother at a loss to turn off the freakshow of incomprehensibly combined facial expressions. 

A  nice man sitting nearby witnessed that lovely conversation and starting talking to the boys and me about dogs and Transformers and people we both knew.  It was a VERY nice thing for him to do – striking up conversation to distract the crazy lady.  VERY NICE.

We finally get back to the examining room and the doctor says that yes it will need stitches.  I nod. I figured.  I mean, I figured that in a ‘there’s a whole lotta blood here, so yes that makes sense’ sort of way.  NOT from the educated, experiential point of view of having any idea what stitches actually entail.  Nuh no.  If so I would have called my pastor and begged him to come help me, and by the way, could you pray that my face is okay, later, when Seth-2yr’s knee is all taken care of? 

A nurse sized me up and tried to get me to tell him  whether or not I would be okay whenever they did the stitching.  He said they really needed to know ahead of time, if at all possible.  “Of course! I’ll be fine!”  I didn’t think to say, “Never seen stitches.  Have no idea. And since you ask, my entire torso has vibrated involuntarily for 90 minutes, since the exact second I laid eyes on this cut.  And this smile?  It’s not mine. I’m not this nice.  I have no idea how to make it go away.”  Perhaps that would have been more truthful and candid. 

Caden-4yr jumps up and down and cannot stop talking about the “Byood! There was SO MUCH BYOOD!”  And Seth-2yr melts down.  There are 2 nurses and a doctor in the room when someone mentions the word ‘accident.’  Caden-4yr says, “THIS WAS NOT AN ACCIDENT! MOMMY SAID OVER AND OVER THAT IT WAS ALL HER FAULT.” (I have no memory of this, but I’m sure I did.) He stops and points at me, just in case the two nurses and one doctor are unsure which mommy he might be referring to. “IT IS ALL. HER. FAULT.”  He nods, matter of fact-ly, glad that he straightened out that detail for all present. 

They look at the cut.  Seth-2yr freaks whenever they remove the bandage.  Caden-4yr is inspired to make loud observations about every last part of the cut and the byood.  He thinks it’s very cool. 

So stitches entails me LYING ACROSS SETH-2YR’s BODY to hold him down while he screams – totally understandably – as they dig around in the cut with a syringe and inject some sort of numbing liquid.  DID. NOT. KNOW. THAT.  If I had known that, I might have just slapped a big strip of duct tape across his knee, prayed, and spared him. 

Caden-4yr helpfully reminds Seth-2yr that the doctor promised he could have a lollipop and stickers afterwards.  I’m laying on top of Seth-2yr and Caden-4yr is patiently trying to tell him that he should probably quit crying because the doctor probably meant that he would only get the lollipop and the sticker if he didn’t freak out like that, and he wouldn’t want to miss out on a lollipop and a sticker.  Seth-2yr revved it up a notch, at this, and it is VERY hard to physically hold down an irate 2 yr old , exude calmness for his sake, and simultaneously convince the four year old behind you to STOP IT ALREADY and of COURSE the kid is getting a lollipop and it’s okay to cry because of ALL. THE. BYOOD.

One of the nurses left and got stickers and lollipops for both of them, and they both calmed down.  Seth-2yr’s knee was now numb and he could focus on my freaky face right above him, and the Dora sticker.  He licked his sucker and then managed to stick in to my shirt directly between my shoulder blades. 

We finally left.  He got 5 stitches.  The sight of the stitches makes him scream at the top of his lungs (“Mommay!  I SEE IT!”) so that I come running from wherever I am and yank the bandage back into place so that he doesn’t see it anymore.  Pointing out that it looks sort of like the stitches on the top of a football helped briefly. He loves footballs. He perked up and said, “Yeah!”  Then he looked at me and - even though i was RIGHT THERE- yelled, “Mommay! I SEE IT!”  With fresh tears and all.

I have since devised a new bandaging system that does not slip out of place, and now that he’s in bed asleep I’ve realized that of course PANTS would have been a good idea. Brilliant. 

We picked Ethan-8yr up from school, and Caden-4yr gave the summary.  There was much emphasis on the byood and Seth-2yr freaked out again.  We calmed him down.  Ethan-8yr said, “I wanna see it!”  And Seth-2yr freaked out again.  We calmed him down. Then we went to the grocery store for bandages and came home and they all started talking about playing outside. 

You have got to be kidding me.   “NO!”

Caden-4yr said, “But mommy. It is a bootiful day outside.” (I usually say this to him before i INSIST he play outside.)   

“No. No one’s playing outside. NOT TODAY. Go sit on pillows, and don’t even think of getting hurt.”

Caden-4yr went to his room, talking to himself, “Sit…. on…. pillows….?”


17 Comments on “Injury Quota Reached. And Exceeded. All Today.”

May 6th, 2008
9:49 am

Hi, You deserve the mommay equivalent of a lollipop and sticker (cute shoes) for being so brave throughout that experience! I love the football stitches analogy and I am sure Seth will too very soon. I agree you and Lala were exceptionally injury free during your childhood. I didn’t even know I couldn’t stand the sight of blood until you were grown up. Much love and very grateful, J-mom

May 6th, 2008
3:36 pm

Oh, that mommy will get you every time, even when it’s NOT YOUR FAULT! Got it? This wasn’t your fault. They’re called accidents for a reason…

Girl, I think this was probably just a small taste of life with boys. From what I understand, the more boys you have, the more face time you have with doctors. I really hope that I’m wrong for your sake.

Hope Seth is on the mend and that your face is feeling much better right now… Your mom is right. You deserve a girl’s equivalent to a grown up lollipop!

May 6th, 2008
4:12 pm

I’ll post a comment after the faintness and nausea pass…I HATE Byood!

Lisa B @ simply His
May 6th, 2008
4:35 pm

Holy Mama! I laughed. I cried. I’m pretty sure if I had seen the byood, I would have passed out for sure! God knew what He was doing when He gave me 1 girl. I see lots of prayers in your future. Three boys? I’m sure your face will have the perma-grin for many years :) Oh, and I’ve heard that red towels and rags are great for times like this.

May 6th, 2008
6:11 pm

i’ll be totally honest and say that once you mentioned stitches, i couldn’t go on. i was too queasy. :$ either i have an overactive imagination, or a looooooot of work to do to get ready for motherhood. i’m so sorry your baby got hurt, but glad he’s going to be ok. ((hugs))

Tiff@Three Peas in a Pod
May 6th, 2008
7:42 pm

LOL! I’m so sorry your day consisted of Byood and stitches. I do believe you are entitled to a big glass of wine and a hot bath after what’s youve been through!

Becoming Me
May 6th, 2008
9:03 pm

Oh my goodness. I feel so bad for you. And I thought girls had all thr drama.I cannot believe how hard I laughed though while reading about ER visits, stitches and Byood.

May 6th, 2008
9:14 pm

My predictions: Caden will be an excellent reporter or witness in a court case some day. Seth will not go into medicine of any kind. You will need to buy more pillows.

May 7th, 2008
1:15 am

I know I am not supposed to laugh at your clearly heinous day, but true confession time- I did. I am so sorry that you had to go through that, especially with the hubby out of town. I am shocked and amazed that with an 8 year old boy, and a 4 year old boy this is the first blood gushing experience you have had. You clearly are doing something very right in avoiding accidents. Watching your kids suffer at the doctor sucks. I can’t even stand shots.

May 7th, 2008
4:21 am

The byood is never fun. You brought back some crazy emergency room memories for me…. like when I had to survive those crazy doctors resetting my poor daughter’s broken arm. Needless to say, it was not pretty and I was not as brave as I’d hoped…. Sounds like you held together nicely. Good for you!!! No matter what we all think it is our own fault…

BTW… when does the book come out??? You the the writing skills!

May 7th, 2008
3:11 pm

The funniest (sadly) thing to me was when you describe your freakish face accompanied by the tears. I have done the EXACT same thing with my three year old when I didn’t want her to know I was really upset. I had the crazy eyebrows and silly smiles. Why do we do that??? Why can’t we just be honest!!! I guess I don’t want my little one to know mommy really does get upset too. Can you imagine if you had reacted the way you had wanted to??!! Seth would have really freaked out then!

May 7th, 2008
8:06 pm

Oh wow…hope it gets better!

May 8th, 2008
12:39 am

Oh Kelsey the memories this brought back!! there was a time, when Scott and Jeana were little, that we were on a first-name basis with the ER staff. It’s no fun, is it? I only fainted once, thank goodness. Hope you are all feeling much better today. By the way, the root/bulb/tuber thingys arrived, and there was no byood, so I guess they made the trip okay ;) Thanks again!!

May 8th, 2008
2:19 am

Okay, this brings back the memory of my sons stitches incident where he got in a tug of war with his sister over a metal can lid!!! AAck. So, maybe that naked lady incident was for a purpose so that you can use it’s image to block out this other bloody traumatic one instead….such choices. I do hope he feels better soon…. some day it will be a memory he brags about. Hang in there.

May 16th, 2008
7:15 pm

I have a feeling you and I are both in for a wild ride these next 10 years or so as we watch our boys grow! Who knew life was so crazy for “boy Moms” huh? I had no idea what I was getting into!

Hang in there and rest your face :o )

May 18th, 2008
4:11 am

Poor BABAY. Mine would do totally the same thing, it must have been awful.
SO sorry for you guys and I hope it heals quickly.


[...] there would be a very FULL category labeled, “Public Freakouts.”  It would include this one, this one, and this one just for [...]

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