I Told Him Not To Run! Cori’s Experience With A Kid Injury In The Time Of COVID-19
I'm guessing every mom in the world has either thought or said the same thing to their kids, several times, throughout this Coronavirus pandemic..."Don't fall down! We can't go to the E.R. right now!"
The idea of going anywhere near a doctor's office or emergency room in this day and age is unnerving at least, terrifying at best!
But there's not a lot else for kids in quarantine to be doing aside from playing tag, hide-and-seek or running around their yard with their siblings. And each day, weather permitting, I hold my breath as I watch my kids just being kids in the driveway. I want them to run around and have fun, but I know the risks to them if something awful should happen and one of them was to fall out of a tree or take a digger.
I tell them to be careful, to slow down, to be aware of their surroundings. I hear myself sounding more and more like a ridiculous broken record. "Don't run! Tie your shoe laces! No you can't ride your bike down that hill! Watch out for your sisters!"
But they're kids. And as much as not listening to their parents is almost instinctual, so is their complete disregard for their own bodily safety.
So it should have come as absolutely no surprise to me yesterday, as the sun was shining and my kids were racing up and down the little side-street we live on, that my son should take one of the hardest falls of his life.
Now, to give you some context, Noah, who is 12, started this period of quarantine shorter than me. He has since surpassed me in height. And as someone who is still getting used to the boundaries of his ever-elongating form, Noah knew neither the limits of his speed nor where his arms and legs stopped and started. So at one point, when he was running at top speed and then tripped over a twig in the road, and got immediately got bumped from behind by another body, he went down and went down hard.
He now knows the limits of his body. The tar on the road helped him learn this lesson the hard way.
I was in the kitchen, cleaning up from one of the 8,000 snacks or meals I had made that afternoon, when he came in bleeding from his elbow and knee, with a massive case of road burn up his side, and two swollen wrists.
I would share with you the first thought that crossed my mind, but this is a family station, and I'm not allowed to swear, even in my mind. But I can tell you I did.
I immediately swung into "mom" mode, washing the wounds with peroxide and bandaging them up. I grabbed an ice-pack from the freezer and made him hold it between his wrists. We waited for a bit, while I sent a quick note to our doc about what had just happened.
We kept an eye on it all night, sticking him in brace we just happened to have at home. It was a rough night's sleep for the both of us. He was in pain and I was anxious.
Was it broken? Was I going to have to take him to get an X-ray to find out. What kind of a risk was that going to pose for us? And then to the others in our immediate quarantine circle, some of whom are high-risk?
The next morning we had our first tele-med experience while we video-chatted with our doctor. She said that an X-ray would be a good idea. Cue the sweats and churning stomach acid.
I called ahead to see what the protocol was. I had a conversation with my son about the fact that we'd both be wearing protective gear. I instructed him not to touch his face...or anything for that matter. I told him to leave his glasses at home (mostly because he touches them about a thousand times in a 5 minute span!)
We both went in with masks and gloves. We passed through the first set of doors and were immediately met by a nurse who checked our temps and asked us how we were feeling and if we'd been around anyone sick. She led us into the virtually empty waiting area. (There was literally one other person in there, and I'm not even sure he was a patient. He was dressed in scrubs, so my guess is he was on a break and watching some HGTV in the lobby.)
There were hand sanitizer stations and plastic dividers everywhere. We didn't wait long before we were brought right into an exam room that smelled heavily of disinfectant. Again, it was a matter of minutes, and then we were in the back, getting the hand imaged.
And then we were on our way.
When we got in the van, and I removed his mask for him and we both took off our gloves and sanitized our hands, I watched him like a hawk till we got home and scrubbed ourselves down.
It wasn't the huge anxiety attack I was expecting it to be. Don't get me wrong, I was nervous the whole time. The nurses and docs did a great job! And I think the key was communication--talking with him about the dos and don'ts.
It was really the first time he'd been anywhere, outside of our house or van, since this all started. It was the first time he'd had to wear a mask or be really conscious of what he touched. (He's a 12 year old boy -- he's rarely conscious of what he touches, but did fairly well with some gentle reminders.)
Now, had it been one of his younger sisters ... the 4, 6, or 9-year-old, I may have hyperventilated. But I think this was a good trial run for us both.
I know things are going to be different when we all venture back out into the real world. I'm not thrilled he fell, or that was the reason for our little practice session, but I am grateful to have had the opportunity to ease into this new normal.
Thankfully, its a sprain and not a fracture, so there's no other outings that need to happen in the near future.
Hoping we both rest a little better this evening.