If I were keeping a record book of highly emotional days, today would definitely be added to the book. I thought about waiting to write this so that I'd be less emotional, but sometimes it's the emotional that makes it worth writing at all.
On any given day, my office is just a short drive from our little boy's school. I take comfort in knowing, that if needed, I can be at his side in only a few minutes.
Today, however, was a little different. After dropping him at school, I wasn't going to the office - I was travelling approximately three hours away with a group of folks. I had already arranged for his aunt to pick him up after school because I knew I would be home a little later than usual. He loves when she picks him up and was excited about going with her. I walked out of his school this morning without worry, my mind shifting its focus onto the next part of my day - work.
I had put my phone in my purse and placed my bag in the floor by my seat. I was driving, so I wasn't giving any attention to my phone. I had checked it during our only stop to find absolutely nothing needing my attention.
A short while later, we pulled into our destination. Everyone else had already piled out of the vehicle and was waiting on me. As I was gathering my things, I happened to check my phone - not out of real concern that something may be there but merely out of habit. What I saw was enough to raise some alarm - I had five missed calls, two voicemails, and a text message. I am not ever THAT important. I immediately checked the missed call list and noticed little man's school was on the list. They had left a voicemail which I hastily listened to.
I am not one to say the words "oh my god" - I prefer "oh my lands," "oh my goodness," or "oh wow." We believe that to be taking the Lord's name in vain and have worked really hard to keep that from our vocabulary. That's important to note, because as I listened to the voicemail that was left by his teacher, the only words out of my mouth for the world and God to hear was "oh my God."
As I write this, I can tap into that exact feeling of panic that I experienced the moment I heard the words "he fell at school today, he needs medical attention, he needs to go to the ER." I am three hours away. My husband is working out of town today. My baby needs to go to the ER. How bad is it? What happened? I can't even get to him... I scrambled to call little man's aunt. I couldn't even find her contact - I was so out of sorts. I finally realized I know her number, just dial it.
Little man's grandmother answered the phone and immediate realization hit that they must have him. With complete desperation and some relief that he was in their care, I demanded to know how he was, what happened, and if I needed to put the key in the ignition and return home immediately.
They assured me that he was okay but would probably need stitches, and that I did not need to return home this very instant. More than likely it would all be over with by the time I could even think of arriving. I begged for them to keep me posted and said I would continue with our plans. I put my big girl panties on as best I could, and I walked into the building on wobbly legs and with my heart racing, all while making a phone call to my husband to say I would keep him updated.
I received updates throughout the afternoon, but not a lot had transpired. A lot of time was spent waiting. The work portion of our trip came to an end and it was time to return home. I had planned on driving home but knew that I just couldn't. I needed to make phone calls and send text messages - I needed to KNOW the details. I needed to know what was going on - I had to talk to someone. I am so thankful that one of the others that I was with did not mind driving. It gave me the opportunity to handle the emotions I had kept contained while we were working.
Throughout the drive, I'm given new details. His cut will require stitches and they will numb him to do it. The next update I receive is that he is fine and he'd like a happy meal. I feel some relief but I know true relief will not come until I actually see and hold my baby boy.
After returning to town, I grab my own vehicle and head for the grocery store. This tough, sweet little boy needs milk, cookies, suckers, sprite, and band aids. I hate that I have to make this stop, but at this point, I've already decided I'm spending the day with my boy tomorrow and it will be better to have these things now then having to go back for them later.
I cannot wait to walk in the door to see my child. I'm preparing for meltdown. He's been so tough, so strong, that when he sees me the charade will crumble, and he'll need nothing but me - my arms and my love.
I was wrong. I walked through the door, dropped the groceries, and he was all smiles - like today was just any other day. As if he hadn't just experienced some serious pain - numbing liquid, numbing shots, and being held down while seven stitches were sewed into his head. Aside from the gigantic band aid on his forehead, he was just my little man. I well up just thinking about the resilience of this little boy and children out there just like him and children going through much worse. And I am so, so thankful to God.
I sit here and think about how I physically couldn't get to him, his father couldn't get to him, but his grandmother and his aunt were there for him. They took the emotional roller coaster ride that I would have never asked them to take. But God asked them to, and they took it, and they rode it with grace and love and patience. I can't imagine dealing with the child in pain and the desperate parents too.
I am so incredibly thankful to them for being there, for loving us, and loving little man. I picture them helping the nurses hold little boy still so they could put in the stitches while he cried angrily - that is love. I imagine their panic as the school finally got ahold of someone and they rushed to his aid - that is love. I see them sitting there waiting patiently on the doctors and nurses but anxiously wondering what is taking so long - that is love. I see them getting ready for bed tonight, exhausted and overwhelmed but still offering themselves to us just in case we need anything - that is love.
Thanks be to God... and thank you to those two very special ladies. We love you. We are so very blessed.
Now, with tears subsided and emotions mostly in check... I imagine you're wondering what actually happened. My understanding is that he had fallen into a wall that was covered with a metal bulletin board. His head hit the corner of the board which put a fairly large gash in his forehead. As we cleaned up this evening, I also noticed a decent size knot and a little bruising and swelling.
He sleeps soundly beside me now and I'm hoping for a restful night and a relaxing day tomorrow.
As always, thanks for reading.
September 10, 2013
Four Years Old
22 hours ago