Monday, December 01, 2008


A couple of months ago I made the ill-fated decision to take Elisabeth into the bathroom at our local CVS after already leaving the store. Why? Well, once in the parking lot she announced to me she had to go potty. I should have ignored her. After all, she had a Pull-Up on and she had frequently made such pronouncements in the past only to arrive in the bathroom and be more interested in turning on water faucets and inspecting toilet paper rolls than trying to use the toilet. But the fateful decision was made: an almost three-year-old in diapers should be taken to the bathroom, even if it's futile, if interest is expressed.

Once in CVS's bathroom Elisabeth did try her best to use the toilet. She did. She actually sat on the toilet for five seconds, at least. And that's when it happened. After her lightening fast potty session (in which nothing went into the toilet that is supposed to) she jumped off the toilet too fast for me to grab her. And she tripped and fell... and fell right into the corner of a baseboard heater.

As soon as I saw the blood I panicked. I ordered Madeleine to run outside and get Joe (this was, after all, the beginning of what was supposed to be a peaceful family walk; I had run inside quickly to fill a prescription). The cut was small, but deep, so we walked home rather briskly and rushed Elisabeth over to Children's Hospital. There a short, friendly brunette whose name escapes me carefully stitched Elisabeth's nose after more than a few hours of waiting and now, a few months later, the wound is healing nicely.

Elisabeth was the first of my three children to need stitches. One ER visit for stitches in eight years? I assumed I wouldn't need to repeat the adventure for another few years, at least.

Not so. Last night it was Elisabeth again. The kids were dancing in the kitchen. Hank was sliding more than dancing, really, and slid right into the rug on which Elisabeth was standing. The rug pulled out from under her, causing her to fall. She fell hard and fast and didn't have time to break her fall. Her chin broke open, though this time the would was larger, but less deep. Once again, we loaded her up into the van and headed over to Children's Hospital. This time Madeleine came along to see what all happens in an emergency room and how it is, exactly, that you stitch up a wound. The wait time for this visit was less, though the wet, snowy roads made the trip a bit more treacherous. The doctor was again, female, but taller with shorter hair. She also very carefully inserted stitches in Elisabeth's face, though three this time, instead of two, and in her chin instead of her nose.

I love Children's Hospital. I really do. The doctors are great, they're so good with the kids and everyone makes it as easy as possible to be there under stressful situations. But I really, really hope we have no occasion to go back again for a long, long time.


Cheryl said...

We have had two ER visits for stitches--on for dd (now 13) when she fell a few years back on the church playground and opened up her chin. The second was for ds (5) on Easter Day this year after he put a gash in his forehead by running into the refrigerator door handle (as best I can tell--I didn't see it) while chasing around the house with the dog.

Something like this seems to happen to the majority of kids at least once. Oldest ds (now 16) never had stitches but he did break one his front teeth (permanent, not baby) in half and he also managed to break his ankle a few years back.

I have never had a broken bone, stitches, or surgery. At 44, I guess that's pretty good. Hoping my run of good luck continues for 44 more!

Terri said...

oh noooo! i'm sure hank felt awful! poor elis.

i just used up my last (accidentally?) stolen-from-work vial of dermabond on cal's head last month. i guess i will have to start working again.

Ang said...

Oh what a story. You sound like my sister, she has 3 kids, no stitches until the 3rd one...3 times in less than a 6 month period. On his lip, side of head & his upper eye..makes for exciting days..:) I found your blog thru Ramblings of life, hope you don't mind the post.

SuperMom said...

Welcome, Ang!

And I sure hope we don't match your nephew's track record-- ow!

Alexis Jacobs said...

Oh no!! I hope she heals quickly. And that you stay away from Children's for a very long time.