Found a Flower at My Feet

April 10, 2009

Way back in February it was 12 degrees; there was no school and the kids were so antsy I finally gave in to their pleading and bundled them up to play outside. Ten minutes later Jakob burst inside. “Keira fell and she won’t stop crying!” I looked outside — she was lying on her stomach by the playset, half-screaming, half-crying. I leapt down the back steps and realized as I landed that I was barefoot. My left foot still has purple scars from the cuts I received as I ran over the snow and ice. I’ve never seen Keira fall and just lie there…. I scooped up her limp body and ran back to the house. I said to Keira over and over, “it’s okay baby. Mama’s got you. It’s okay.” Halfway there the pain set in.

It hadn’t registered yet that she didn’t reach for me and hold on monkey-style. The phone rang and because I’m neurotic, I grabbed it as I sat with Keira on the couch. It was Julie. I must have sounded a little panicky as I explained what was going on; she said she’d call back in a few minutes. Keira hadn’t calmed at all but the crying was strange. I can’t think how to describe it. She wasn’t really focusing on anything and as I removed her hat and coat she pushed me away. “I don’t want you! I want my mommy!” “Baby, it’s me. I am your mommy.” “Noooo you’re not my mama, I want my big mama!” The words themselves, the text, look funny. It was terrifying.

I called the clinic and as I held for the triage nurse Keira said her belly hurt. Concussion, I thought. Sure enough they wanted me to bring her in. I bundled her back up and ordered Jakob to Get Some Shoes On because we were Leaving Right Now. That boy needs to learn to heed the lightning in my eyes when I’m Very Serious. The nurse took her vitals and once she heard about Keira not recognizing me it was a foregone conclusion that they a CT scan. She walked trotted us over to the ER, explaining on the way that we could get one right away there versus waiting for approval. Handily, the clinic and the hospital are connected so we went from one world to another without stepping outside.

Keira asked for Adam while we were answering questions in the ER. Shortly after he arrived she vomited for the first time in more than two years which (understandably) freaked her out. At various points she fell into a light sleep as I sang to her and gave rubbies.

The CT scan didn’t go well. Being in pain and completely exhausted meant she was beyond comfort or cooperation. The tech held her head (yes. she screamed.) but they still had to do a second take.

We plodded to a 3×9 cave masquerading as the ER waiting room (clearly identified as NOT the urgent care waiting room). Jakob got to watch some Spongebob while I paced the cave and called my MIL and SIL. In the interest of full disclosure this was actually the shortest ER wait time I’ve ever experienced, so there’s that. After we had all been properly subdued in the Cave of Doom the doctor informed us the scan showed no trauma and they were calling it a concussion with no need for follow-up unless These Terrifying Symptoms occurred. They did not. She vomited twice more at home and was of course completely wiped by the experience, but was fine. Is fine.

For the first 3 weeks post-concussion she was extremely clingy. This made starting at her new sitter a little more difficult, but the sitter is very laid back and non-threatening so it went pretty well, considering. She is now very comfortable there and I see the personality that had disappeared at her old daycare.

My bebegirl is okay.


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