So, my birthday post never actually came to fruition. I had plans to write one, of course, but it never actually came together into an actual post. So, now, here it is 20 days after the fact, and I’m attempting to at least make amends to age 26 for neglecting it. I guess part of the problem has been that I feel like I should have something great to say. I mean, 365 days have come and gone, shouldn’t I have something profound to say about it? I’ve come to hate my birthday for the most part because it seems to never be very important to anyone besides me. It’s the end of summer and it kinda gets swallowed up by labor day weekend. Every year, I get excited and then sad and then pissed off about my birthday. Maybe I’ll learn to just ignore it all together at some point.
I will say this about getting a year older, I definitely feel older now than I did on September 1st (my last day of being 26). That has more to do with my child taking years off my life with her first broken bone and subsequent body cast. She fell chasing a kitten at the babysitters and caused a spiral break in her left femur. It was the worst experience in my life thus far. You don’t know what pain is until you have to sit and listen to your child scream in agony as they unnecessarily twist her broken leg so they can take xrays of the rest of her body because they figured we had purposely hurt her. I literally broke down and cried in the corner of the xray room. And, as expected, she had not a single mark on her body except for that one broken bone.
Let me just break it down for you:
11:30am – get call from babysitters that EB fell and won’t get up and cries when you touch her leg.
12:00pm – Pick up baby. She screams and cries the whole way to hospital because of her carseat and the fact that we didn’t know she had a broken leg.
12:30-3:00pm – We sit and wait. Occasionally, we have guests. We are grilled by the doctor, the nurses, and a social worker. Some other nurses heard the story of how she broke her leg and somehow got that she fell off the changing table and broke it. (BTW our babysitter doesn’t even have a changing for that very reason). Social work grills us and then goes to talk to the doctor. She comes back and asks about where we work. When she finds out I work for the Family and Adult unit of Job and Family Services alongside the Children Services department and that Josh works for the Police Department, she laughed. Literally, chuckled. Finally, she tells us the doctor says these things can happen and she clears us. She tells us that we won’t have to deal with social services at the downtown hospital.
3:30pm – We are transported to the ambulance to move EB to the downtown hospital. They made me watch Dora the Explorer the whole way even though EB was asleep. It was the cherry on top of the ice cream sundae from hell.
4:30pm – We arrive. We check in and around 5pm we are moved to the room she’ll be having her cast put on in.
5:00-8:30pm – What’s about to happen to EB is explained to us. They use a splint and special cast to hold her leg til it heals instead of inserting a metal rod into her leg. They explain the drugs they are going to use on her and let us pick out a color for her cast. I ask her if she wants pink or purple and she tells me she wants pink. Again, we are grilled about our story. The nurses seem sympathetic. The doctors seem skeptical. A very rude doctor from the ER comes in and tells us that social services is going to come talk to us. I told him we were cleared in Liberty and she was going to send notice down to the social worker. He rudely tells me that it doesn’t matter. This is just how things are done. Luckily, he’s wrong and we don’t see him or social worker again.
Somewhere around 8pm they take her to have full body xrays. They decided to do it without putting her cast on first (which they usual do to avoid causing pain to the child, and, yes, they actually told us this) and twist her poor little broken leg all around to get shots. They do this to make sure there’s no other breaks or signs of abuse. They made it very clear they didn’t believe our story. She came back 100% clear except for her one broken bone. I was tired, hungry, and extremely angry at this point.
8:30pm – The nurse finally manages to get all the doctors in one place to put the cast on her. It takes a bit because they don’t usually do colored casts in the ER. The guy who put on her cast knows a guy in supplies and gets the pink sent up for her.
9:00pm – She’s out cold and covered in a pink cast. But my baby is out of pain and I can snuggle her without her screaming and swatting at me.
10:00pm – She’s taken to her room and I try to wake her up since she hasn’t eaten since breakfast. She’s not having any of it.
It was an extremely long night with her waking up at least once an hour screaming and crying .She hated the heart monitor they put on her finger and threw it across the room at one point making her machine go crazy. She ate a little bit in the morning and we watched frozen 8 times before we left the hospital the next day.
Now, it’s a matter of trying to handle her attitude about being held down and trying to keep her happy the best we can. I didn’t think it was possible to miss my destructive toddler, but I do. So very much. She’s so upset because she can’t get full skin to skin contact and no one can hold her. She’s constantly held and loved on and for now she’s got three inches of plaster between her and us. She had a week 1 check up last Thursday. She went from a 27 degree angle break on the 9/11 to 17 degree on 9/18 which is good progress. Hoping for only 4 weeks with the cast. I so hope she can go on hayrides and trick or treating without the pink monster still wrapped around her.
EBs broken leg isn’t really justice to my 26th year either. It’s just been the consuming force in our lives as of late. My 26th year wasn’t really all that exciting. Don’t get me wrong. It was a good year to us, but there was nothing spectacular to look back on. Ok, that might not be necessarily true. I did get my big girl job in February. And I bought my first car in July. And Ellabelle finally started walking and talking this year. So, I guess there were some big things that happened. It’s hard to think back about them. My brain is in a fog and my body aches all the time right now. I feel like I’m literally pushing through from one day to the next. I will be happy when our lives go back to normal.
I’m going to just let 26 go silently into the night. I’m ready to move on and embrace 27. I’m excited because I love the number 3. I mean, technically, it’s a counting compulsion that’s part of my OCD, but, regardless, three is my number and the multiples of it. So, much to my surprise, I found out that 27 is considered a perfect square. That’s 3x3x3 or 33 to those not well versed in or perhaps repressing math like I try to do. It’s a year of three 3s. If that’s not a sign for good things to come, my OCD doesn’t know what is. I’m also even more excited for fun things up ahead for us. Like our first family vacation, just the three of us, and EB being old enough to be excited about Christmas. 27 is going to be good. I can tell.
And, now, I present, my 30 before 30 list. I started this a while ago, and I’ve already managed to cross two things off!
- Go berry picking
- Go sledding with Ellabelle
- Skip a rock (2 hops)
- Fly a kite on the beach
- Put my toes in the Pacific
- Have another baby
- Buy a new car
- Visit the GWTW museum in GA
- Sit front row for a show
- Pet a penguin
- Be a size 8
- Go on a cruise
- See the Declaration of Independence
- Take Ellabelle fishing with my dad
- Shoot a gun
- get another tattoo
- Buy a house
- Pay off a bill
- Become a soccer mom
- Finish a scrapbook
- Finish EBs baby quilt
- Visit three new states
- Be vegetarian for a whole week
- Finish my story
- Take a camping trip
- Ride an elephant
- Knitting and donate 50 scarves to the homeless
- Play in the rain
- Swim with dolphins
Three years from 30. I haven’t decided if I’m afraid of 30 yet or not. I think I’m just going to focus on my perfect square for now.