Mar 25, 2016

One "Peaceful" Afternoon

It was one of those rare moments of peace. The baby had gone home. The big kids squirreled away in their bedrooms, reading. The little kids were playing in the front yard. The dogs were all out back, snoozing in the late afternoon sun. For an instant in time, the house was quiet.

Then the silence was ripped by the screams. My kids have always been vocal about their pain, but this was different. I could tell that something was really wrong. And then I could hear the words, "I can't move my arm! It hurts!" Abbie and Daniel burst into the house, Abbie clutching her right arm. She showed me and when I saw the crookedness, I knew.

"Grab your shoes. Get in the van. Daniel, get her the frog and a towel. Tell the others we are going to the emergency room."

At this point, she had stopped crying. She slipped on her flip flops, took the wrapped up frog (our jolly little ice pack), and followed me to the car.

As we drove away, she commented, "Oh, I can move my fingers." And I thought, "She can? Well, I'm over-reacting then!"

At the next red light, I asked to see her arm again. She moved the frog and I felt a wave of nausea sweep over me. I was not over-reacting. There was a noticeable dip in her arm.

It was here that I finally got around to asking what had happened... she had fallen off the ripstick onto the concrete sidewalk.

At the closest urgent care, the woman behind the desk explained there would be a two hour wait before she would even get seen. We opted to drive to a different one across town. The entire time, she was calm, but complaining of the pain. I cringed at every bump and eased around each turn, trying not to jog her too much.

As we sat in the waiting room, I realized she had a good dozen ponytail holders on her broken wrist. She likes to keep them there partly as decoration, partly to keep them away from her big sister. I told her they would probably have to be cut off. She nodded sadly.

While we waited, I got on Facebook and asked for prayer. My phone battery was incredibly low, so I tried to keep it brief and to the point. "At the ER with Abbie. Prayers please."

The response from friends and family was overwhelming. And as is common when people pray, the results were noticeable.

We sat in the waiting room about five minutes. That's the ER equivalent to being seen immediately. The nurses, doctors, specialists and tech were overwhelmingly kind and helpful. I'm used to compassionate medical staff, but this was striking. Even the guy who came in to get insurance info was warm and respectful.

Her arm was definitely broken. Both the radius and the ulna. All the way through. A bone doctor came in and explained he would need to sedate her and set it before he could cast it. He was awesome with Abbie, telling her exactly what was going to happen and calming her fears. He explained that he understood how she felt because he had broken the same two bones in the same place when he was the same age. She still talks about how "cool" that was. :)

The ER doctor eased the ponytails off Abbie's arm without hurting her a bit. Thus saving the precious bits of elastic. Abbie was relieved.

The X Ray techs were as quick and painless as they could be, apologizing to her for having to shift her arm around and praising her to the skies for how tough and cooperative she was.  She did her best to do exactly what they asked of her without crying or complaining or even kicking them in the shin. And she didn't even roll her eyes when they rewarded her with stickers. Come on, people! She's nine years old!

The bone setting was quick. I barely had time to settle into the waiting room and send a few texts back and forth to my husband before they came and got me. Here is a pre-op picture:


Once it was all over and she resurfaced from the drugs, she was in fine form. She merrily watched tv, asked tons of questions, and even posed for a picture with a smile.


Despite the fact that she is in a cast and had several days of pain, there is so much to be grateful for!

She timed the accident perfectly in the day, waiting until the baby had left (one less stress for me) and the dad could hurry home so I didn't have to worry about the other kids. 

The break was clean and easily "repaired". When the doctor showed us the "after" X Ray, we could not see any sign that the break had ever even been there. 

It was, without a doubt, the shortest and most pleasant ER visit I have ever had. We were well cared for.

The other kids were calm and responsible and even got supper on the table. They amaze me daily and I am so glad that we have raised them to be self-reliant! 

She goes to see a doctor next week to see how well she is healing. We are praying for two things: that she gets a shorter cast so she can straighten her arm, and that she is released to play soccer. Because soccer is her love.

If you are reading this and were one of the people that prayed for us that fateful evening, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts! Your prayers were felt and answered in a tangible way. Thank you!

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