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Thursday, October 3, 2013

New Table & A Dislocated Elbow

What an interesting day! I never thought I would be soooooooo happy to buy a card table in my life…but I was! The girls and I went to Target to buy a regular ol’ card table after I finally broke down. I thought we could hold out long enough to get back to Colorado, get our tools and build a real table, but who knows when that’s gonna happen and I need a friggin’ table NOW. So, I got that and I also bought a tablecloth…that doesn’t match anything in my house, but it’s a nice mixture of not showing fur/not showing stains/kinda matches the colors in my curtains/right size. I’m gonna end up making my own I think, when we finally build our real table. But for now, I couldn’t be happier!!!

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For the first time in 5 months, we finally got to sit down at a table and eat together as a family! We’ve been eating together as a family every night, it’s just that usually 1 kid is on 1 bench, the other kid is on the other bench, Ahdoo’s sitting on the edge of the bed and I’m sitting on the floor in the corner right next to the oven. It hasn’t been the greatest setup to say the least!

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We were so excited that we had a table that the girls were both looking forward to playing a game with us after Ahdoo had his post-dinner smoke and I finished up washing the dinner dishes. While he and I were occupied with that, the girls were rough-housing around on our bed. I guess MHG was trying to get Cindy off our bed and was yanking on her arm. All I know is that one second I’m washing dishes and the next second, my baby is letting out an ear-shattering scream that I have never heard before…I’ve never heard it come out of ANY kid before…it was terrifying…

We ran over to the bed and she stopped screaming and started whimpering while she was cradling her right arm against her belly, supporting it with her left hand. I picked her up and tried to feel for bones sticking out. Nothing was amiss, but I realized that every time I tried to straighten her arm or turn her wrist that scream was back. I quickly packed her diaper bag while Ahdoo held her. MHG had disappeared. She knew she hurt her sister and thought she was in trouble…I mean…she was, but right now we had bigger fish to fry. But then I went in her room and the poor thing was crying so hard. I have never seen her so sad and scared before in my life. She thought she killed Cindy and she felt terrible. I told her that everything will be ok and that I needed her to stay with Ahdoo cuz he needed her to cheer him up (He was as much a wreck as she was…he thought it was his fault for not letting her ride her bike earlier that day and having too much bottled up energy that she obviously expelled on her sister). She jumped down outta her bed right into my arms, I held her for a moment, kissing away her tears, and then I was out the door.

Once Cindy and I arrived at the Urgent Care, they got her in immediately and I put the little Looney Tunes gown on her. She loved it and called it her dress. The doctor came in pretty quickly and somehow without even touching her, ruled out Nursemaid’s Elbow (whatever that was). I actually took this picture to show her how crazy her hair looked after I had just taken it out of the hair tie. It was the only distraction I could offer my poor girl. (By the way, she refused to give her “dress” back when 3 different women tried to take it away from her, lol. No one had the heart to make her cry even more, so she ended up keeping it.)

Cindy boo boo

I had no idea what “Nursemaid’s Elbow” was, no one told me and I was too frazzled to ask. They proceeded with torturing her to get 3 x-rays. I volunteered to be the one to position her arm for them. I figured it’s going to hurt like hell regardless who moves her arm, but I’m her Mom and the only one she trusts. Fortunately for all of us, it was excruciating pain for her to move her arm, the second it was in place the pain subsided and she didn’t want to move it at all for fear of it hurting again. So, because she wouldn’t budge once it was in place, the x-rays all came out crystal clear and we didn’t have to do them more than once. It still was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. Nobody wants to see their kids in pain, and they especially don’t want to be the ones to CAUSE them more pain.

Cindys ligament and bone

They reviewed the x-rays and were pretty sure nothing was broken, but were also painstakingly aware that SOMETHING was wrong. They put her arm in a splint and sling and sent us home. We were told to give Ortho a call the next morning and get her in to see a specialist…well no kidding. Obviously. The next morning, I immediately made the phone call at 8am on the dot and got her in during the afternoon…that was the earliest they could do. With Cindy’s arm safely secured away in its splint and sling, we went about our day as it was planned. MHG had a playdate with her friend here and Cindy hung out with me while I hung out with her friend’s Mom.

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We got to Ortho at 1:30 and got in to see the doctor right away. After being told at Urgent Care that nothing looked to be broken and it wasn’t Nursemaid’s Elbow, I started fearing for the worst. My gut was telling me that it was a torn ligament and I was fearing surgery. That’s all we needed, another friggin’ ortho surgery! Cuz one wasn’t enough in this household apparently. As my mind ran wild, the doctor came in and took 1 look at her, 2 looks at the x-rays and said that it was, in fact, Nursemaid’s Elbow.

O.M.G. I have never been so relieved and at the same time in such despair in my life! This meant she wouldn’t need surgery. She didn’t have a broken arm. But, it also meant, that whatever pain she has experienced so far, was NOTHING compared to what she was about to witness. He left the room for a second and I explained to MHG what was about to happen. I told her that he was going to pop her elbow back into place and it was going to make Cindy scream and cry like nothing we’ve heard yet and that Mommy was probably going to cry too and if she wanted to leave the room she could. Oh yea, the second he came back in that girl bolted for the door. She stood outside, just on the other side and he told me what he was going to do. I did have 2 options. The first, was we do it here and now and get it over with and the other was to wait 1 more day and he could surgically fix it.

Who the hell would want to surgically fix this? I realize that it’s going to hurt like none other, but it’s for a quick, brief moment then instant pain relief. OR, we can knock my kid out, cut her arm open, fix it that way and then she has to spend the next couple weeks in pain at the incision site. Do you have any idea how hard it is to keep a sling on a 2 year old? Duh. We are going to do this here and now.

I held her tight, held her left arm and braced myself. It took him 2 attempts as my poor little angel sat there screaming and writhing in pain. The first time, I couldn’t watch. Tears poured down my cheeks and as I thought it was over, I looked down just as he made his second attempt. Oh my. That looked so incredibly painful. My little girl begged and pleaded for him to stop in those short few seconds in between tearful screams, but then “Pop!”. It was over. She was done. Just like that, she stopped screaming, smiled at him and he asked her to move her arm. Naturally, she wouldn’t because of what just happened, but she was already unconsciously moving her fingers. She hated that dude and probably me as well. He instructed me to try to get her to use her arm and he had MHG come back in as he left for a bit.

I tried to coerce her to move it by grabbing toys or pens. MHG even asked her if she wanted to slap her in the face (silly kids)…but none of that appealed to her. Then, I realized I had her beloved orange Tic-Tacs that her Grandma got her hooked on months ago (thank you Mom). I showed them to her and put the container in her right hand. The next thing I know, she held her left palm open and with her previously wounded right arm, she lifted it up, bent it, turned her wrist and shook a couple Tic-Tacs right into her open palm! MHG and I squealed with delight and it must’ve been loud cuz the doctor came right in to witness it himself. He gave us the all-clear to leave and told me to shoot him an email with her status update later that evening. (I almost forgot, but did remember to do that halfway through Grey’s Anatomy, lol.)

Shortly after we got home, this was Cindy:

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After hardly sleeping at all the night before, and not taking a nap today, she couldn’t stay awake. I’m just glad to have my sweet little girl back…unharmed. P.S. Even though the previous days events were overshadowed by Cindy’s boo boo, we are STILL really happy and excited to have a dining room table!

***The moral of the story here folks, is that from ages birth to 4, kids’ joints are still cartilage and not fully developed. They are easily at risk for these types of injuries. I have always known that and have very rarely ever picked them up by any other means than under the arm pits. There have been occasions though, like when we’re walking and I’m holding her hand, that she’ll trip and I hold tightly to her hand so that she doesn’t fall…which causes her to still fall, only with me now yanking on her arm to boot. After going through this, I will just let her fall. The damage from that pales in comparison than what we just went through.

I knew better, I guess I just thought that as long as Nic and I didn’t do it, then she wouldn’t be at risk for this type of injury. It never really crossed my mind that her sister could be the one to cause it. I’ve told MHG on SEVERAL occasions to not treat her sister like a rag doll and to stop rough housing with her. Now, she unfortunately knows what will happen if she doesn’t. I hope that this will be an important lesson to all of us…and to maybe even some of you out there that might do this to your kids as well. I’ve seen so many parents that like to swing their kids around in circles while holding onto their hands or arms. Please! Don’t do that. You can still swing them around, you just need to hold them under the armpits.

Don’t pull them up by their arms or hands or jerk on their arms or hands either. BELIEVE ME! You do NOT want to go through this.

Here is a link to information about Nursemaid’s Elbow: http://kidshealth.org/parent/medical/bones/nursemaid.html

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