I love my sons, really I do. I love them more than I thought possible to love another being. I adore their individuality as well as their similarities.
I do not, however, love the trips to the emergency room as a result of their 'indestructibility'.
BTW, they are both fine. Having said that I got a phone call at around 4:30pm yesterday from J. He told me I needed to pick him up right away. Uh-huh. I can think of nothing better than driving in rush hour traffic to pick him up at the drop of a hat. When I asked why he needed picking up he said he might need stitches. Hm. That didn't sound good so I got in the car immediately and figured out how to get to him without having to make any left turns. That is, after idling at one intersection for a small eternity.
When I got to him he was with his friend sitting on the curb with their bikes. I gave J a once-over, saw a fair bit of blood, very ripped shorts and a lot of dirt. He asked why I didn't ask him if he was OK or sound worried. I told him that if he could call me and sound good, tell me where he was, and not have his friend screaming in the background, then he was OK and I'd deal with any other information as it was presented. Best not to freak out until absolutely necessary.
They'd been BMXing on a 'hill' that has been created by other BMXers. It's a dirt/gravel parking lot with packed dirt for hills, moguls and dips. J had 'got some air' of about four feet at a high speed, but his rear tire came down first, followed by the front tire, followed by J. He did a face plant into the dirt, spiked pedal into his shin and his left arm seemed to have stopped his fall. And I found out later when he told the doctor...he was not wearing a helmet and blacked out for a second or two (he didn't remember the actual landing, just waking up on the ground). He was coherent, talkative, sore, and wanting stitches. So basicly fine, but scratched up. I told his friend to find his own way home (not a new concept for this particular friend) and had J sit in the car while I wrangled his bike into my trunk. Luckily, there is a Medicenter only a few blocks away, unluckily they closed at 4 pm. The other Medicenter near our house closed at 5 pm. My car clock said 5:06pm. So it was off to the emergency room.
Once we (finally) got there and parked the car we had to stand in line for triage assessment. I don't like this particular hospital's way of doing things and try to avoid it, but they do all pediatrics there so I figured it would be easier than getting transfered later like we did with his appendix. Anyway, we stood in line and I told J to bleed some more in order to get faster treatment. Didn't work. They still took their time. What mystified me was watching children who'd arrived after us and didn't look to be in any pain/discomfort being called in first. I found out later that the doctor checks the computer and selects which children to have called down to the treatment area. Once you've been through triage, your info is entered onto the computer with your story of what happened and what treatment is needed. It took an hour and a half from triage to getting sent to the treatment area. Which, by the way, is a tent at the moment.
When we got there they checked J out pretty thoroughly. No concussion was apparant and his sore thigh was just a muscle injury, not a break. However, the road rash was going to have to be scrubbed clean. The nurse did his arm/elbow while I did his face. Poor J almost, but not quite, cried. I remembered that in the car J was making his eyebrow 'talk' by moving the skin so I mentioned that to the doctor. But it was so clotted in blood that it took a while (and me washing) to find the gash. They put this topical freezing stuff on his leg, eyebrow and elbow and left it to set in before giving him stitches. Except it took them over an hour from the time they put the freezing on to beginning the stitching that the freezing was wearing off. Oh goody. The doctor eventually just used the needle to freeze and puff out the areas. Apparently the topical stuff was so the needle wouldn't hurt (they have to inject a little, move the needle around, inject some more... *shudder*) but it still hurt a bit.
After some time, J got one stitch for the puncture wound on his shin, four stitches in his elbow and two on his eyebrow. The elbow wound had so much dirt that after the needle freezing was in they had to wash it some more. It looked a bit like hamburger with blue stitching when they were done with it. He still has road rashy scrapes on his hip, arm, knuckle, face, and eyebrow but nothing was done about those. Just the instructions to keep them clean. The only reason I had to scrub J's face was because the skin would heal over top of the gravel and create a rough complexion. That apparently doesn't matter on your arm. Or maybe they thought it was already scabbing over. If J was younger I'd've made him sit in a warm bath to get really clean so I can keep a better eye on the healing. But he's 12. He just ate and went to bed after we got home around 10:30pm. What a long evening.
T has been sick lately too. He seems to have my immune system where he'll have a cold but only exhibit one symptom at a time. One day it'll be a stuffy nose, then a bit achy, then sore throat. But this time it's like every cold he should have had in his life caught up to him. He has a cough that wouldn't go away, fluid in both ears, and general congestion and grumpiness. I was letting his body deal with it because it's a virus so antibiotics were pointless. I was watching for his cough to produce phlegm that was green or yellow or tasted sour. Then it would be bacterial and a doctor could help. But before that could happen, the cold moved into his eye.
He called me at work to ask if he had pinkeye. Seeing as how I couldn't actually look at him I asked why he'd think that. He said his eye felt like it was blinking through gum, the lids felt like they were filled with water and he had to pick the crud out of the lashes to get the eye open. Oh yeah, that's pinkeye. I had some over the counter stuff in the bathroom so I gave him instructions on how to use it and permission to stay home from school. Then after work I took him to the nearby Medicenter to get looked at. That's where I found out they close at 5pm instead of 8pm and were closing their doors for good soon. And yep, he was given amoxicillan for the cough and drops for the eyes. But he doesn't like the eye drops and noticed the pinkeye was gone after the third dose...so I don't think he administered it last night or this morning. He took the amoxicillan, but that stuff tastes good :) He can't swallow pills yet (J can, but only because he accidentally swallowed an M&M whole, then practiced on veggies so he didn't have to taste them) so he was given the baby stuff that tastes like bananas and is left in the fridge. I may have to sit on him to get the drops in his eyes...or let him deal with the consequence of not taking the medicine as perscribed. He's 14 so maybe it's time to let him learn some of these lessons on his own :)
And thinking of growing...my boys are growing like puppies do. T has always grown so slowly you can't see much change until he stood next to J. He has always been proportionate in his growth...until now. His neck is so thick. I don't know why I didn't expect that, but I didn't. He's always had this little stick-like neck that I thought wouldn't be able to hold his head up. Now it's about as wide as his jawline. And J...he's always grown in fits and starts. I look at him and wonder if he'll eventually grow into his huge knees or ginormous feet. Last night I looked over at him in the waiting area and saw even his chin is growing longer than I would have thought.
Funny how I remember thinking things would get easier with my boys as they got older. Things don't get easier, just different. And although the first year of their lives is full of firsts like crawling, walking, talking, solid food, and sleeping through the night, the rest of their lives are filled with firsts as well. Like dressing themselves, school, mouthing off, gaining/losing friends, girlfriends, facial hair, emergency rooms, and the very first time you hear that deep voice and wonder...'who is that other adult in the house?' and turn to see your son standing there looking the same...but different.