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Remember how I said I’m like the worst chaparone ever and I don’t know why they keep letting me near children? Yeah, well. I chaparoned Field Day and ended up in the ER. Just not a party without an ambulance, right? I said that, I think. Know what else I said? “I sometimes worry that my kids don’t have enough adventures b/c none of them has broken a bone.” I shall worry no more.
I decided to follow Ben’s class around this year, since I don’t see that group as often as I see Lily’s class (I’m Library Lady for them once a week). Field Day is a big deal for our school. The middle schoolers plan and execute the whole thing. They spend months coming up with a theme and designing stations to suit the theme. Last year was the Olympics, this year was Mission: Impossible. Julianna’s station had a PVC frame strung with a yarn web. There were bells on it and the kids had to get through the web (lasers) without ringing the bell (sounding the alarm). Normal children carefully picked their way through the web. 4th-6th grade boys launched themselves through gaps in the web, heedless of the sidewalk on the other side. But that’s not how I ended up talking to EMTs.
No, it was the musical lily pads station (I no longer recall how this related to the Spy theme…) that did us in. The music played, the kid running the station called out an animal, and the kids had to imitate that animal while stalking around some green gym mats on the grass. Music stops, you get on a pad. Ben had been having a bit of a rough go. We had some tears at an earlier station when he was convinced he was being teased. But he was enjoying this well enough. He was being a cheaty cheater pants by hovering around one mat until the middle schoolers spotted him and made him stop. It came down to him and two other boys. Ben and one kid landed on the same mat. Some of the kids said the other kid was there first. Some said Ben was. Gradually the tide turned his way and Ben was determined the one who stayed in. Down to just Ben and one of his friends. They dive for the last mat, it’s declared too close to call and they do it again…Ben dives in arms first, other kid dives in knees first and lands on Ben’s arm.
Oh, the snap. Seriously, it still makes my stomach churn just to type it out. If I could scrub that out of my brain, I would gladly sacrifice some other stuff that might be stored near it–Culture Club lyrics or the Dukes of Hazard Theme song. There was a split second of “comfort child? Run for help? AUGH!!!!” and I said “You’re going to be alright buddy, I’ll be right back” and launched myself across the field. Probably 100 yards to the pavillion where the nurses where. I don’t run, ever, so I was on pure Mommy Power. The whole way, I’m screaming “CALL 911!!” with, it should be noted, a phone in my pocket. I had left Ben in the care of his teacher who, I’ll point out, had a walkie talkie in hers, with which she could communicate with the nurses. So, you know, duh. I arrived, relayed my message, and gasped like a fish on the grass for a bit while other moms said things like “um, you need to sit down. No really.” It was about 95 degrees.
But I had to get back to Ben, and I did. cooler heads talked the ambulance in. The hospital is only a few blocks from the park, but of course it seemed to take forEVER to get there. My poor kid was white, but holding it together. Literally. His arm looked like an S. A blocky one, in an ugly typeface, but you get the picture. We kept him cool as best we could. Steve arrived just as the ambulance was about to go, so I let him ride with Ben and I went to get the van from the school. Another mom offered to drive me back. She had her van there b/c her 4th grade daughter was in a wheelchair. She’d been in a grisly ATV accident, months ago, and still wasn’t on her feet. So that gave me a nice splash of perspective. But damn it seemed to take an eternity to get up the hill, get the kid loaded in…In retrospect, it was good. Caused me to focus and get a grip. But at the time? Let’s GO!
Once the EMTs stabilized Ben’s arm before loading him up, he said he wasn’t in much pain. In fact, he told them “I think it’s mostly shock and adrenaline at this point” and they said “how old are you again?” At the ER, he rated it a 4 or 5 which is damned impressive, as far as I’m concerned. (They didn’t show him this chart, though.) They took the xrays and gave him a soft cast. That night, Steve took him to have the orthopedist try to pop the bones back where they go (yes, I sent Steve for that one. My audio track of horror was full, thank you). He was able to get one in, but the other wouldn’t quite go. So Monday, they knocked him out so they could get the other one set. Here he is just before heading off to Sleepyland:
His new cast is red. It goes over his elbow for now, but hopefully in a couple of weeks, he’ll be able to get a smaller, waterproof one.
Luckily, I’d procrastinated paying for swim team registration. Once again, I am rewarded for my bad behavior. woo! He’s getting ansty, as it’s his right hand in the cast and he likes to draw. We’ve told him that he’ll get to develop all new brain bits, he’ll come out of it smarter! i just came out of it older.