Saturday, October 18, 2014

Broken Arm, Not Heart

About a year and a half ago Eric and I were walking along the river with the girls and the dogs. It was a beautiful and carefree stroll. Everyone was happy, the sun was shining, all was well. As we meandered along the pathway chatting and strolling we passed a couple and their young child, a girl maybe 11/2-2years old. They were all just fine and enjoying the lovely day, but their daughter had a cast on her arm. Our conversation paused as we passed and exchanged greetings (we do that in the West) and then continued on our way. Eric and I completely forgot whatever it was we had been discussing prior to encountering the young family. We immediately talked amongst ourselves, once we were out of ear shot; we sympathized with those parents. We knew it must have been very scary to deal with a broken arm and oh...keeping a young child from acting too crazy while the healing is happening, dealing with a cast. We agreed that if anyone was going to break a bone in our family that it would probably be Elise, she is pretty fearless. Then we went on our way...

Yesterday started out pretty mellow. The girls and I hung out at home. I did some chores while the girls played. Mostly they were giggling and happy. Occasionally there would be a bang and a cry or some whining. I would turn to give the girls my complete attention, but they'd already be on to the next game. Kids.

We ate lunch and decided to visit the Science Zone. Both girls had been asking to visit as it had been a while and we hadn't yet renewed our membership. I agreed to take them after lunch. They both plowed through their meals, only slowing down when Cordelia tried to eat baby corn one kernel at a time.

We left home and drove over to the Science Zone. The space is a discovery area located beneath a furniture store. So we went downstairs and explored. The girls had fun with their recycling sorter and the giant kaleidoscope. Finally we went to the very back where there is a toddler play area. The girls ran around and had a great time. In the center of the play area is a small ball pit. Really it is just a foam ring with a couple dozen balls. You have to climb over the bench to get to the balls. The girls were climbing all over the place when Elise slipped and fell. She landed on her left arm and screamed.

I was sitting a few feet away, monitoring their play and saw the fall happen. It didn't seem very hard and it wasn't more than a few feet, but I suspect that Elise put her hand out to catch herself and slipped on one of the balls. Who knows?

When I heard the tone of scream I knew she was in real pain. I calmly asked her to grab my hand with hers and she couldn't. I gently slid back the sleeve of her shirt. I knew it was broken, it looked like a rubber arm, bent strangely. I scooped her into my arms and called to Cordelia to follow. I pulled out my phone as we raced to the exit. I called Eric and told him Elise had a broken arm and we quickly decided to meet at the ER. 

When we arrived at the ER Eric and Cordelia took care of cars and valet while Elise and I rushed to check in. She was crying the most pitiful cry and breaking every heart as we passed. The lady at the desk was trying to hold back her own tears (she found us later and cried once she saw that Elise was OK). We waited for what seemed to be a very long time, but it was less than 10 minutes---lightning speed in ER time. Sitting across from us in the ER was a young woman who gave us sympathizing smiles. When they called her back she asked them to let Elise in first. Such kindness from this young woman who offered the explanation that she was a mother too (later is saw her wheeled by with an IV, very seriously ill, she smiled and I mouthed a thank you---I wish I could thank her again).


We went through the check in process and were taken to a waiting room. Doctors and nurses came in and out. I sat on the bed with Elise on my lap. I gently held her arm stable on an ice pack. Eric and Cordelia sat next to us. Elise calmed down enough to talk and even laugh, though her arm was still clearly hurting. Each new person that entered needed to ask what had happened. I understand that it is standard protocol, but each retelling of the story would make her sob and say,"Don't wanna go to science zone." 

Anyway, the X-Ray was taken. My dad arrived. My mother stayed updated via texted updates from Eric and my dad---she was with my grandmother who had just been released from the hospital in South Dakota after a seriously bad week.
The verdict was in, broken radius. 

Eric and Cordelia left for the resetting of the bone as we obviously didn't want Cordelia there for that. My dad was so amazing and helped to distract Elise as long as possible with photos on his phone. He had her squealing with laughter. I will spare you the details of the resetting process, the end result was relief. Her arm was set and a plaster splint now stabilizes her arm. Cast will come on Monday. They took a final X-ray, Elise was kind of druggy from the disassociative drugs they had used and she ended up telling the X-Ray tech guy that she loved him.

We left the hospital and went home. On the drive home Elise told me that I was very brave. Ha, if she only knew how very hard it is for parents to keep calm when they want to freak out! She was such a great patient and had been so tough! I hate that she had to be tough.

We pulled into the garage and Eric, who had been crawling out of his skin to be near her, was right there needing to hold his girl. Cordelia was so sweet and is taking her big sister responsibility very seriously. We ate dessert, soy ice cream with chocolate chips and sprinkles. Then we had dinner. The patient had requested veggie dogs and she and Cordelia managed to eat a frightening amount of food, the cost of missing an afternoon snack.


Before I put Elise to bed last night she told me,"My arm is broken, but not my heart." 



8 comments:

affectioknit said...

Oh my goodness!...and Bless her heart...and yours...prayers for healing...

Mimi said...

I have never ever commented in your blog before ( I think, might be wrong) but I have been reading it for years and I feel like I know you, the adorable girls and your family. You write in such an amazing way that I always enjoy your stories and the beautiful photos. If I feel negative, your blog posts make me feel positive. And today Elise just made me so happy with her quote. Bless her, she looks like a brave little soldier!! All the best to your lovely family and greetings to Elise from Finland.

Maria Rose said...

Thank you Mimi, sincerely.

Marie Roxanne said...

I never had a broken sone, but do have a dislocated elbow that was never reset.
Hope the healing goes well and I like the fact she told the x-ray guy that she lvoed him, I bet that just made his day!

Stacy said...

Oh poor little sweet pea!! I'm glad she's okay.

Sarah and Josh said...

Oh dear! Poor sweet baby!! How scary. I'm glad to hear that you had such a good hospital experience though. Hope she heals quickly.

Sarah and Josh said...

Oh dear! Poor sweet baby!! How scary. I'm glad to hear that you had such a good hospital experience though. Hope she heals quickly.

Amber Robbins said...

You are very strong Maria! What a sweet and insightful comment Elise made at the end of the day. Kids are wonderful. I am praying for Elise to heal well!

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