Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Close Encounters of the Barbed Wire Kind

Monday I went to work like I do on Mondays now, leaving the kids home with their father. They had grand plans to go swimming and eat lots of junk food that I don't let them eat as frequently as their father does. I had a few errands to run after work and walked in the door a little after 2, my feet aching (stupid uncomfortable cute sandals) and just wanting to take off my shoes and bra and sit down for awhile.

When I drove in the driveway I could see Sam, Abby and Paul on the carport, Kady nowhere in sight. I got out of the van and expected Kady to jump out at me to scare me - a new hobby of hers, scaring us all shitless as she jumps out from behind things. I was informed she was inside playing with her GameBoy, also informed that I was an hour late getting home and that there was no food in the house. Bet you can't guess who those informative statements were from. He then informed me that he needed to go into town because the renters were complaining that the faucet in the tub was leaking. (My Papa was the world's best renter. These new people complain a lot.) I told him to go for it, I was going inside to sit down for awhile. Sam asked if he could ride the four-wheeler and I said, "Yeah, as long as your daddy is out here." Abby had a few zits on her chin and asked me to take care of 'em for her. (Gross yes, but we're pickers here in this house.) She and I went in the house and left the menfolk outside to ride the four-wheeler and load the truck.

Okay, I'm sure it's no secret that my husband and I are not the best of communicators and this is a prime example. He left to go to town. He did not inform me of precisely when he was leaving for town. Just hopped his redneck butt in his truck and sped off with his pipe wrench. Anyone want to take a guess at what he didn't do besides not telling me he was leaving? Yep, he failed to tell Sam to get off of the four-wheeler and not to ride without a grownup outside. Now, in Paul's defense, Sam knew better than to ride without a grownup being out there, but still, sometimes you have to remind kids. Because their little memories are incredibly short-term.

I was busy torturing my eldest daughter with my fingernails when I hear bellerin' outside. At first I thought it was Sam hollering at the dog. Next thing I knew, the front door blew open and Sam was not quite screaming, but definitely not speaking calmly. To the best of my recollection, here is what he not-quite-screamed:

"Oh my gosh I wrecked the four-wheeler Ohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh Mom, I wrecked it Just ran it through the fence out in the little field I'm so sorry Ohmygosh I'm sorry Dad's gonna kill me I hit the fence, Mom Oh Dad's gonna be mad Oww Oww Owowowowowowowowwwwww Oh my gosh I'm sorry"

Something like that. He turned to go outside, saying he needed to check on the four-wheeler and that's when I gently took him by the shoulders and said as motherly as I possibly could, "Son, I don't give a dang about that four-wheeler. Are you okay?"

"No.......I don't think I am."

Then he went outside. I followed him out, could see the four-wheeler entangled in barbed wire, looked down to see my son sitting on the front stoop, head hanging down, shaking it saying, "I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry" repeatedly. Then he started crying. A lot. Which was reassuring to me because up to that point I thought he was going to pass out. I knelt down in front of him and said, "You daddy isn't going to kill you or be mad at you. All that matters is that you are okay, okay? Now, let me look you over." He sniffled and nodded. While I checked him for blood and bones sticking out, I said, "Ab, go get your daddy." She walked around the house and came back to tell me, "He's gone. The little truck's gone, Mom." I clenched my teeth and said, "Then go get the phone so. I. can. call. him."

"Paul, Sam just wrecked the four-wheeler... Yes.... Ran it through the fence.... He seems to be okay, but you need to come home. Now."

In the meantime, the girls had checked out the damage and had run back up to me hollering how he "really wrecked it good." Sam started bawling again and then told me his arm was tingling. I'd noticed he wasn't moving it, but had asked him to wiggle his fingers, bend his wrist and elbow and he did all that fine. But he still wouldn't move it off his leg. I called the doctor's office and the nurse said tingling and hurting aren't usually a good thing after a wreck and to take him to the ER. About that time Paul came flying up the driveway, skidded into the yard, jumped out, looked Sam over, then headed down to the fence. He told me later that he had seen the four-wheeler jammed into the fence row on the way up the drive and once he saw Sam was okay, needed to not talk to anyone for a few minutes. He was pretty scared. He knew how bad it could've been.

I never saw it up close, but Paul said if Sam hadn't hit the steel fence post which slowed his momentum and broke his arm, he could've easily been sliced, diced, julienned and many other words that one only likes to use when referring to food and not children. He has said many times that it could've been so much worse.

I called my mom to tell her what had happened, told the girls to get their shoes on and we loaded up to go to the hospital. The wreck happened shortly after 2:30, we arrived at the ER at 3 and by the time we walked in the doors, the skinny little boy arm that had moments before looked fine, now had a strange looking, not-at-all normal bump just above the wrist. We were sent to the waiting room and about 15 minutes later were called back to triage. She took his vitals, asked a bunch of questions, gave him an ice pack and sent us back to the waiting room, telling us there were two ahead of us.

At 4:30 my mom came by to pick up the girls. Sam was acting better, had had a Coke and some Doritos from the vending machine, was watching Oprah while sitting curled up in my lap and I thought we were probably going to be told he was fine and would have a nasty bruise. Mom and the girls probably weren't out of the parking lot when we were called back. The nurse was a guy I've known since I was in elementary school. In fact, he's a cousin to my best friend from school, DeLisa, and the three of us used to ride his three-wheeler all over De's field with no adult supervision or helmet, half the time we were's a wonder he survived to become a nurse and I survived to be in need of his nursing abilities.

He ordered an x-ray and they brought in a portable machine which Sam thought was the coolest thing ever. He'd never had an x-ray before and was nervous, but still in awe. We were given another ice pack and a TV remote and settled in to watch Drake and Josh and Zoey 101. Around 5 Tater popped her head through the curtain and said, "Hi, I'm Dr. Yaya" which Sam thought was hilarious. Soon after that, a mere 2 1/2 hours since we walked through the doors, we saw the doctor who didn't even know Sam had been x-rayed yet. While she went out to see the x-rays, Paul called and said he was in the waiting room, but didn't want to come back and "make a spectacle or anything," to which I said he was a dumbass. The doctor came back in and asked, "Sam, buddy, have you ever broken a bone before?" Sam said no and she said, "Oh yes you have!"

I went out to the waiting room to get Paul at that point, while the nurse got ready to splint Sam's arm. The doctor showed Paul and I the x-ray and sure 'nuf, the little dude broke his radius cleaner'n a whistle. We walked out of the ER, exhausted and hungry, at 6pm with a boy sporting a hard splint, a prescription for 15 Lortab (Nope, Meanie, no Benadryl - guess they figured we had that at home) and a list of orthopedists to call first thing in the morning. We took him to McDonald's then picked up his Rx and we finally went home.

The durn cute uncomfortable sandals had sucked my will to live by that point and I drove home barefoot. By the time Mom showed up with the girls at 8, Sam and I were in our pj's on the couch watching yet more Drake and Josh. He said his arm didn't hurt too bad so I gave him a Motrin before bed, took two Benadryl myself so I'd sleep (because I hadn't the night before) and we both crashed before 9. At 11:30 he woke me up saying he couldn't get comfortable and his arm was throbbing, so I gave him half a pain pill and put him in bed with me. No amount of Benadryl helped me sleep through being severely beaten with a hard splint for the remaining 7 hours of the night, but he slept great.

I called the orthopedist at 8 and then had to call his PA for a referral and by 8:05 we had an appointment for 2:00 to get a cast. We had been told in the ER he'd be in a cast for 6 weeks, but the orthopedist said that his bones are still pretty pliable and given his age and health, he only needed to wear it for 3. I was so relieved - it is summer in Oklahoma and can you imagine how ripe that arm'd be by September? I'm sure 3 weeks worth of enclosed sweat aren't gonna smell great, but I'll take the golden moments where I can get them.

He's gone all day without anything for the pain and has only threatened to use it as a weapon once, so I think things are going along swimmingly.

The night it happened, I tucked him in and got him situated then went off to tuck in the girls. I thought I heard him crying so I peeked back in his room. I asked if he was okay and he said, "Yeah, I was just praying and thanking God for taking such good care of me today. I think I was pretty lucky, huh, Mom?" Of course, I melted into a puddle in the floor and said, indeed, he was a very fortunate little boy to have a God who loved him so much and looked over him so well. I know I blow and go about Baptists here on the blog, but I've never stopped loving God or doubting His love and care for me and mine. He is an awesome God. An awesome God who obviously knows how reckless 8 year old boys can be.


Oh, and to those of you who ventured guesses as to who the breakee was.... Yeah, I always knew it'd be one of the girls, my highest bet going on Kady. I guess 10 years in the Mom business and this being our first broken bone isn't bad, but I still never would've believed it would've been my boy. Those two girls of mine are serious clutzes.


When I got to work on Tuesday I was telling one of the caseworkers about our adventure the previous afternoon and as serious as can be she said, "Yeah....didn't we get a referral on you?" and started rifling through files. She thought it was hilarious that I just stood there like a fish outta water with my mouth opening and closing like that. I figure I must fit in pretty good if they're already teasing me.


Anonymous said...

So glad to hear your son wasnt hurt worse, nothing worse on a mommas heart than an injured child. Brett (our oldest) has had us in the ER with a broken clavical, knee, and finger, and recently we thought he broke his foot, but thankfully it was just very bruised- I promise we dont abuse the child! I have threatened to wrap him in bubble wrap before he can leave the house.

Marshamarshamarsha said...

Very glad your boy is ok. A little 4yr old drowned here in Afton this weekend (same age as our boy). My hubby is a first responder and has totally freaked out about our pool and our kids since he saw the poor baby. Oh, and our boy has had us in the emergency room 4 times before he even turned 4. I know where my gray hairs come from. The girl was a breeze compared to him (but she is a klutz like me). Comforting isn't it to know that God is looking out for them when you least expect something to happen.

LanternLight said...

Gee, Sam will have some awful good bragging rights now :-)

(and I thought my three inch barb wire fencing accident scar was special ...)

Hillbilly Mom said...

Poor little dude. Thank the Gummi Mary he's OK. Those damn Baptists must have been prayin' for him all this time.

Sam is rockin' with the green cast. I loves me some green. It's my nature.

I have a feeling that teenage kid I saw wrap up in the barbed-wire fence a couple years ago would rather have broken the arm than have the fence coiled around it.

Great Googley Moogley, Sam was lucky. Or blessed. Depending on how you roll.

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