Another Family First

Guess who's finger this is?

For those of you who guessed Owen, you are right!

(Or, as Maddie would say, "Thank you Captain Obvious.")

I probably should've made him wash his hands before taking the picture, but this is how we really live.  He was working on a science project and the fancy colors are food dye.  The not so fancy colors are blood and guts or something.

Anyway, I was minding my own business at work when I got a call from the school.

"Hi Mrs. Rader.  Ummmmm.....Owen's thumb is bleeding and we can't get it to stop.  I'm not really sure how it happened, but you'll want to come get him.  Like now."


True story -- didn't sound like an emergency to me.  Owen hates school this year, and I figured he had picked his fingernail until it bled.  Add a few well placed screams and the school has no choice but to send him home.   Anyway, before I left the office I decided to finish a few things, talk to my boss for a bit, shut down the computer, change my outgoing messages.

When I arrived at the school 45 minutes later, I found my son sitting in the receptionist area.  His finger -- not his thumb -- what's wrong with those people?  I mean, seriously.  Most people can tell the difference between a finger and a thumb.  No Captain Obvious here.

Anyway, his finger was practically hanging off his hand.  I've never seen anything like that in my life.  It had to have hurt, but by the time I got there, Owen could already do tricks with it. Like bending it back so you could see the bone.

True story-- this is when I pretty much passed out on the school floor.  It gives me the shivers just thinking about it.

Once I got myself together, Owen was able to tell me that he had slammed his finger in a giant door.  Wonderful.  Honestly, I'm not sure how no one noticed him doing this.  Really?

I took Owen to the Urgent Care Center right by our house.  He was very calm and quiet.  I think he was kinda curious about what they were going to do with him.  They were able to take us to a room right away, which was great.   The doctor was very nice and explained everything to Owen.  The laughed and joked and had a great time.

Until the doctor took out the needle.

And told Owen that he would need to stick that needle right inside the gaping wound.

It was SO over after that.  Owen was NOT going to have that needle stuck in his finger.  No way.   The doctor kept trying to reason with him.  Gave him "one more chance" about 11 times.  Owen was in his full glory that day - I'm willing to bet that they have never had a child scream like that.  It really is impressive.   Finally, the doctor said "I can't do this anymore" and walked out.  Lovely, really.  While I'm sure that Owen put on a show like no other, I'm equally sure that they've had other kids who are scared of 8 inch needles being poked into open wounds.

The nurse gave me a dirty look and told me that kids much younger than Owen have no trouble with this procedure.  She recommended we go to the Emergency Room.

Holy Smokes.

Fortunately, we have a pediatric ER about 10 minutes from my house.  We had to wait a much longer time to be seen, but it was so much better.  The triage nurse told Owen "Give me your hand now.  We have to get this numbing cream on it."  She grabbed his hand and did it before he could even begin to protest.

As the triage nurse was typing our info into the computer, she said "Looks like the doctor ordered an x-ray. Why didn't they do one in the Urgent Care?"  I don't know.  That's a good question.  If you slam your finger in a door and it almost falls off, certainly you want to check if it's broken, right?

Anyway, we were put in a room with a TV and a 'child life specialist.'  I'm sure that the #1 qualification for child life specialists is that you have to be cute.  The #2 qualification is that you have to be perky.  3#?  You have to like kids.  By this point, I'm thinking that the doctor at the Urgent Care called to warn the ER about us.

After the x-ray, the doctor came in to talk to us.  He said that this would be real easy.  He would give Owen some massive pain killers, hook him up with some laughing gas, stitch up the wound and we would be on our way.  And that's exactly what happened.  The child life specialist showed Owen everything that would happen to him, and then giggled with him the entire time he was on the laughing gas. It was almost like going to some weird kind of party.  Everyone was so nice.  No one gave me the stink eye for being a horrible mother.  The only thing that would have made it better is if Owen could have shared the laughing gas with me.

Looks like his finger will live.  He spent the next couple of days grossing everyone out with the stitches.  I spent the next couple of days trying to understand how the school could mistake a finger slammed in the door and almost falling off for anything other than a finger slammed in the door and almost falling off.

The stitches were removed this weekend.  Owen's finger looks pretty cool.  He's proud of all the loose skin that's falling off his finger where the stitches used to be.  It gives him a few more days to gross his sisters out.

Hopefully, we'll never have to go through that again!


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