Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Very Lucky

Strawberries picked- $1.50 a pound
Two hours in the sunshine w/happy kids that aren't fighting- priceless

That's the tweet I was formulating in my head as the kids and I left the strawberry fields yesterday.

The stifling heat from last week was on temporary leave,it was a perfect day to spend outside. 

The kids had fun filling up their containers, throwing the bad berries as far as they could and of course playing pretend (Lucy was in charge of story lines).  Pretending we were on a farm in the olden days, pretending our horse drawn carriage broke down and we had to walk down the dirt roads back to town, etc.  Everyone was pretty chill, even the baby, Wade.
It was everything good about life you can imagine.  Simple, good, sweet.
There was even a petting zoo.  With a llama!
But I never sent that tweet.  Because in an instant, we went from sweet and good to panic and mayhem.

I turned around for a second to set the 11 pounds of strawberries we picked.  That was the instant.  The instant that JT fell from the dinky wood play structure near the checkout.  I say dinky because JT has jumped off of porches higher than this.  He's dangled and let go of branches higher than this.  I've watched in fear just knowing he would get hurt.  But no, every time he has jumped up and said "mom, I'm fine" and brushed himself off.

This time there was a scream and noiseless crying.  Remember that cry when babies or really small children get hurt and you know it's bad because they are crying and no sound is coming out?  It was that cry.  

"What happened!" I screamed in the most un-calm, un-motherly way imaginable.  "Oh fuck. Oh fuck. He broke his god damn arm. Shit."

Yeah.  It wasn't pretty.  My other kids didn't know what the hell was happening.  They were shook up from their brother's fall and stunned by my language.  I say some pretty horrible swear words in life, but never in front of my kids.  They still think "the s word" is stupid.  

"Why can't you play like normal kids?" I screamed.  "Shit what are we going to do? Oh baby, I'm so sorry."

Then in a very Kramer vs. Kramer  moment I scooped up JT and ran toward the check out.  "Get the baby and the damn berries," I screamed (you better believe we were taking the strawberries).

"Should we call an ambulance?" the kind, but clearly scared (of me) young girl behind the register asked.  

I opted to call my husband and tell him what happened and ask his advice.  "How the hell does someone break their arm berry picking?" he asked agitated.  After the initial agitation, which was really just worry and love, he calmed me down and suggested I drive him to the hospital and he would meet me there.

The other kids were talking to him in the car as I drove like a crazy lady.  He was so pale and in mild shock, just wanting to sleep.  

At the hospital, Tim took the other kids home and I stayed with my baby.  He charmed everyone with his cuteness and sweetness.  We played an hour and a half of Eye Spy, got X-rays and confirmation he did indeed break his arm.  

"You were very lucky," the nurse said to me.  "It could've been worse."

It absolutely could have been worse.  Of course I know that.  Of course I am grateful.  

But rushing my child to the emergency room awoke something in me.  I knew it was there.  But I got to taste it, see a picture of it.  It being fear.  Real fear of what the "could have been worse" could be like.

My babies can break.  My babies can get hurt.  
In an instant life can go from sweet and good to panic and mayhem.

Parenting, loving, letting go, holding on, trusting, recovering, hurting, healing...complete vulnerability.  Ugh.

When I got home I wanted to make brownies and eat the whole pan, maybe have a few glasses of wine.  I headed straight  to the pantry and found nothing.  Then to the refrigerator and found nothing.  So, I grabbed a bag of shredded cheese and started eating fists full of Kraft mild cheddar.  Honestly, I felt a little better.  

The fear/anxiety/vulnerability is always there.  But so is the love/resilience/wonder.

"I can't catch, but at least I can still throw the ball mommy," JT said as he snuggled into his special spot on the couch.  

What's the take away here?  Bad things can happen to the most adorable, sweet children.  Not all moms are equipped to not swear in public in a crisis and should not be judged.  Brownies should be in the house at all times, just in case.  Life is precious, appreciate it.  And we were very lucky, it totally could've been worse.

1 comment:

  1. So was that a "it could have been worse" in a "you're not that great of a mom" tone (from the nurse)? I hate that. Had that happen when my 18 month old toddled and busted his lip. The nurses were all in my business. What am I supposed to do, wrap him in bubble wrap? Any way... glad it wasn't worse. Enjoy reading your blog- everyday!