Friday, January 13, 2012

CARTER'S FIRST VISIT TO THE ER

****WARNING, GRAPHIC CONTENT BELOW****

Yes, I said "first visit." I know that there will be many more trips over the years.

But, Carter sure made a mark this time. A week before his first birthday, just as he was learning to walk, and while we were in the middle of an ice storm, Carter tripped and hit the inside of his mouth on the corner of a bookshelf.

SCENE 1: There was the obvious screaming and tears. But during the hour after it occurred and much ice had been applied, the bleeding stopped. The kid was obviously going to have a fat lip, but he seemed well enough to go to sleep.

SCENE 2: There was copious amounts of blood. The following day, Carter was chewing on a teething toy. I placed him in the pack-n-play so I could load the dishwasher. I turned around to find a scene straight out of Hitchcock's Psycho. There. was. blood. everywhere.

I'm not kidding. There were bloody hand print smears on the wall. The pack-n-play looked like it had been through a war, and most of all, Carter's entire face was bright red.




So what did I do? I freaked out of course! I pulled up his top lip to look at his injury for the first time since it occurred. It was much worse. It was right above his front tooth between his gum and lip. I was pretty sure I saw an impacted tooth.

Off to the hospital we went! Luckily for us it was in the middle of winter and ice and snow had turned into a horrible mess. Nothing is ever easy. Dadda met us there and surprisingly, we went back to a room immediately and Carter had a doctor in his room within a minute. Come to find out later, that DePaul ER has a no-wait policy for kids under 16. Good to know.

But then came the hard part. Looking at the injury. Sure! I don't mind holding down a screaming kid while seven doctors all try to get a good look at the same time! Why would that be difficult! I poor kid was traumatized. I don't think we could lay him on his back for a week afterwards.

Fortunately, it turns out it wasn't an impacted tooth (hip-hip-hooray!). It was just a very bad slice that was going to take a week or so to heal. The offered to cauterize it (are you freaking crazy) but they also said that might be a little too traumatic for a one-year-old. Ya think? So, we were sent home with a Popsicle prescription - Christopher got one too.

We pretty much covered all the furniture with sheets in case the wound opened up again. But the doc was right. After about a week, Carter and I had forgotten all about it. Kind of. The Psycho imagery still plays through my head sometimes.

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