Sitting in a meeting and seeing your child’s school number flashing on your mobile at 15h20 in the afternoon gets one’s heart racing a bit. Upon completing your meeting and calling the school back and being told that your child has fallen, that he won’t put pressure on his leg and that they believed he needs to see a doctor? These are the moments that put a bolt of fear right into the pit of your stomach.
Frantic calls to your husband. Racing to the school with hazard lights flashing while your heart races. Rushing into the school to see your child hanging limply from your husbands frame while crying and sniffing miserably. These are the moments that crush your heart into a million pieces.
Rushing to the ER, having a doctor say “I hope I’m wrong but that leg looks broken”. Hearing your child scream while your husband holds him down to have x-rays taken and then seeing those x-rays on-screen confirming a break. Not just any break. A spiral fracture of the right femur. The hardest bone in the body. These are the moments that make you want to be physically ill.
Getting an ortho referral at 17h40 at night and rushing to Olivedale clinic to have your child admitted for God knows how long. Having to hold your child down while the nurses put him in traction and hearing him scream “Mommy, mommy, help”. Seeing his little lips shiver as the valoran finally kicks in to dull his pain. Making plans to stay with him overnight. Calling your boss to tell him you won’t be in for the foreseeable future. Having the ortho come evaluate your child and discuss options to heal him – having to make decisions for his care while emotionally spent. These are the moments that adrenaline gets you through.
Being with your child while he’s in traction in pain and bored out of his skull cos he can’t move like he wants to. Trying to explain to your child why you cannot pick him up when that is ALL he wants you to do. Being your child’s advocate when the pain meds wear off and the nurses forget to come and administer them cos the ward is slammed. These are the moments when you would do ANYTHING in the world to make it better and wish you could TAKE on the situation to yourself.
Making puppets out of tongue depressors and balloons out of surgical gloves. Making friends with the mom’s of the other children in your ward and making tea for each other or helping with each others kids so you can go to the loo in peace. Having good friends drop off food and JUST being there to support you through this. Having your mom and sister and niece come to sit with you, knowing that they can’t DO much but will sit there anyway. Having your child smile at you despite all that’s going on around him. These are the moments that allow you to remember how blessed you are even in the midst of adversity.
Holding your child down while anesthetic is administered so his hip spica cast can be fitted. Trying to be brave for him. Choking back your tears that threaten to fall cos you have not slept in three days and you are so, so, so worried about your child. Having the theatre nurse rub your back as you sob your heart out lying on the bed next to your child before he wakes up from spica cast placement. These are the moments that make you realise you are only human.
Going home and learning how to cope with a child living with a hip spica cast. These are the moments that challenge you daily and grow you and stretch you. BIG time.