Monday, February 4, 2013

Broken But Not Beaten

Sunday--a day of rest.

I was looking forward to the rest aspect much more than usual yesterday.  It had been such an eventful weekend--I spoke at our stake's women's conference on Saturday morning, which I always enjoy, but I had been up until 2 am that morning finishing my talk (I NEVER stay up that late.  Ever.), then I was out the door by 8:15 am.  I hosted my friend Allyson's 40th birthday party that night--which was fun, but I was up much later than five hours of sleep should have allowed my body to remain conscious.

We have early church (8:30-11:30), which creates an extended nap period in the long, lazy afternoon.  I got into bed and set my alarm for 2:30, thinking two hours would be just about perfect.  My children know better than to roust me out of bed on a Sunday afternoon before I'm ready, having learned that lesson the hard way, I'm afraid.  So, when Lily came bursting into my room at 2:00, I thought something was wrong even before my conscious mind could register her words: "We were playing capture the flag in the front yard, and Micah fell and we think he broke his shoulder! He can't move his arm and . . . "  And that was all it took to spring me from my cozy Sunday afternoon cocoon.

I got to Micah's side, and we could all tell by the angle of his shoulder that something just wasn't right.  Much to my surprise, he wasn't hysterically crying, just grimacing every time he accidentally moved his right arm.  We called our neighbor and family friend who happens to be our doctor, and he advised us to head in for an X-ray of his clavicle, confirming my untrained diagnosis.

As he was leaving, Dr G offhandedly asked me if we had a sling.  When I replied no, he commented "Wish I did.  Darn it."  Then, many years of girls' camp first aid training came flooding into my mind--duh.  They had been playing capture the flag with two bandannas--bandanna/sling.  How dumb were we?  We had a sling less than three steps away and neither of us had even thought about it.  Hello.

I tied up Micah's arm, loaded him into the Suburban, then carefully drove over three gutters and one speed bump to the nearest urgent care.  I have spent more time in urgent care and emergency with this boy than any of my other kids--there was the broken arm of 2011, the concussion of 2011, and the broken leg of 2009. Ironically, I kind of enjoy those moments in the doctor's office with him.  He is FUNNY, and rarely do I get to spend time alone with him.  Is that morbid of me?  He sat on the exam table playing Angry Birds and recounting to my uneducated mind all the differences between the Percy Jackson movie and the books.  I love this kid.

Less than an hour later, we were on our way home, with him sporting a shiny new black sling and a confirmed diagnosis of a green-stick break of his collarbone.  Green-stick breaks are the most minor, so that's good.  What's not so good?  He can't play the piano or try out for the school talent show or play basketball for the next four weeks.  He's pretty bummed about all that, but he is quite happy that it's his right hand and who can do homework when you're right-handed and your right hand is incapacitated in such a way?  Hmm?

Later that evening, Hyrum ran into the library to grab a book to read to me, and as he came back into the family room, he started SCREAMING.  He had stepped on a plastic nail, and it was still sticking into his foot.  I pulled it out, and the wound was deep.  Deep but not wide and plastic not metal.  I cleaned it and bandaged him up and Ben gave him a piggy-back ride up to bed.

The irony of these injuries is that Ben had sprained his ankle pretty badly Saturday night while playing basketball.  All three of my boys--wounded and broken.
At least their humerus bones are still intact, right?

This morning was an unfamiliar adventure--Micah sleeps on the top bunk and he couldn't get down or get his shirt changed or even snap his pants unassisted.  Hyrum couldn't put weight on his foot without wincing and crying.  Ben hobbled out of bed as well.  I knew it was really hurting him when he showed me he was wearing his ankle brace.

School will be interesting for each of them today, and I'm sure Ben will sit out of rugby practice this week.

One word.


Glad they're all mine.


  1. Ouch! Take care of those boys!

  2. I have four brothers--my mom was at the ER constantly with one of them.
    I have 3 sons as well, and have spent many hours at the UC or ER too.
    You ever notice on shows like America's Funniest Home Videos it's mostly men doing stupid things? lol It's just their nature, I suppose.

  3. So much for a restful afternoon. Go take a nap.

  4. Been there, done that! We just have to get thru state this week and we will be done!

  5. Yep, I remember it well. All to well.

    But boys are still so worth it, aren't they?


    PS. Matt broke his collarbone when he was about the same age. It was a major pain, but healed well in the end.

  6. my oldest likes stitches..he holds the record in the family..

    lily holds the first and ONLY (DID YOU READ THAT MY SWEET FAMILY) broken arm or bones in the family

    cole holds the highly allergic reaction to cashews and oatmeal enough to scare an additional 20 yrs to my life.

    as to the grateful for the bandana reminder for my (will not need this) future!

  7. I remember the day my oldest broke his collarbone. He fell out of a wagon and whacked it on a nearby brick retaining wall. Also a greenstick fracture. Doesn't take much, does it? My youngest has broken an arm. Twice. So yes, I've done the emergency room thing with the broken bones, and I, too, was glad I was the one sitting with them.

  8. sorry about all these injuries. i have two girls, so fortunately, i haven't spent much time in the e.r. may your boys heal quickly and stay safe! :)

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