A Broken Arm and Other Random Ramblings

Sunday, September 29, 2013
When I first started blogging, I would write posts that I called "Random Ramblings". I'd dish about a pet peeve or something that was bothering me.

After the week that I have had, I thought it was time to sit down and write a random ramblings post.

Go grab a cup of coffee and join me as I recount the events of the past week. The good. The bad. The ugly.

Big Plans
Have you ever started your week at the top of your game? Monday morning started out with a to-do list and tons of motivation. I was ready to conquer the world.

By noon, I had knocked off 2 posts for a client, sent out a few emails, tackled my 2 Inboxes, and ran to the grocery store to quickly pick up a few ingredients for dinner that night.

By 4 pm, I had written 2 posts for my personal blog, edited photos from a friend's surprise 50th birthday party, completed 2 loads of laundry, and started dinner. That evening continued in much of the same way.

I was productive, and I was on a roll.

Tuesday was pretty much more of the same, except that I also squeezed in a trip to the gym for an hour. I know! I was on fire.

On Wednesday, I met a friend at Starbucks for about an hour or so, then I came home to work until I picked Emma up at the bus stop at 2:30. She quickly changed, ate a snack, and I drove her to the gymnastics facility for her 3:30 lesson. I turned right around and came home to get Harper off the bus to have her at the same facility for a 4:30 lesson.

Harper's lesson started promptly at 4:30. They both look forward to their weekly lessons and have developed a fondness for gymnastics. Of course, as a former gymnast, I am filled with motherly pride.

Normally, I stay at the facility and watch Harper's lesson. But on this particular day, I had to run to the grocery store, which is a 1/4 mile down the road, to pick up 3 items that the girls wanted for their school lunches.

I hurried in and hurried out. And then I got THE CALL.

If you are the parent of a child who plays sports, you know what call I am talking about. The dreaded "your child has been injured" call.

My heart sank when I saw the phone number. Immediately I knew. You just know.

I was told that my daughter "hurt" her arm. I told them I was on my way back. I'd be there in a few minutes.

As I was approaching the facility, the ambulance was in front of me. THE AMUBULANCE!! Oh God. I couldn't think. I couldn't see. Everything went blurry.

The time from my car to the gym seemed like an eternity. I would soon come to discover that much of the evening would pass in this vein.

I was escorted to where she sat inside. There she was, my sweet baby sitting calmly on the floor holding her forearm. I had to sit down. Otherwise I would have fallen down. I sat next to her. Medics were tending to her arm.

It was an incident on the trampoline. She had bounced too high and panicked, landing on her arm and face.

A Broken Arm
"It's broken. We'll need to take her to the hospital. What hospital would you like her transported to? May we administer pain medication?"

Huh? This was really happening.

Within 10 minutes, we were on our way to the hospital. Harper was in the ambulance, and I was following closely behind in my car. The Hubs had come to the gym to pick up Emma.

I don't remember driving to the hospital. I do remember running through the revolving door to the pediatric ER and seeing her on the gurney with people huddled around her.

20 minutes later, we were in pediatric radiology and she was having her arm and nose x-rayed. Moments later, the attending physician gave us the news. Harper had suffered a compound fracture. Both her radius and ulna (2 bones in the forearm) were broken and had punctured the skin. Surgery would be likely, but the films would need to be analyzed by an orthopedic surgeon.

So, we waited. Not a peep out of my sweet baby girl. Not a single tear shed. Not a single whine muttered.

An orthopedic resident came in to examine Harper. He informed us that she'd need surgery to flush out the open wounds, but we'd have to wait 6 hours from her last meal to administer the anesthesia. Which meant that she couldn't have surgery until 10 pm that night. It was currently 7:00 pm.

My little patient managed to get some sleep.

The next several hours passed at a snail's pace. Finally at 9, we were taken to the surgical unit, where Harper was prepped for surgery. At exactly, 10 she was given her first dosage of anesthesia. I was led to the waiting room.

For an hour and a half, I tried to keep my wits about me. I did manage to read a fascinating interview with Michael Pollan in an old New York magazine. Otherwise, I paced. And paced. And paced.

Finally at 11:30, the surgeon came out to the waiting room to let me know that the surgery had gone well and as expected. She was in recovery, and I'd be taken to see her in 20 minutes.

I think the people on the ground floor could hear my enormous sigh of relief and joy. (I was on the fourth floor). Surgery was over, but the road to recovery would be a long one.

In the recovery room, you can get a glimpse of her bright pink cast.

By 12:15 we were settled in her hospital room, and both of us were ready for some sleep. As if that comes easily in a hospital. She slept well. I was up every hour.

On Thursday morning, the surgeon came in at 9:00 am to check Harper's arm and the swelling. He said she'd need a round of antibiotics at 12 and at 6, and we'd be on our way! That brought a smile to her face.

At 7 pm Thursday night, we were happily discharged.

The previous 30 hours seemed like 30 days. I saw my child's life flash before my eyes, and it was scary.

And here's what I learned as a parent:

You have to learn to appreciate when times are good and know that all the bad stuff will pass.

It's the only way we'll get through it.

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