Emergency Room Visit – Charlie (3rd time)

Emergency Room Visit – Charlie

Charlie has been to the ER three times in his eight and a half years of life.  I am not sure if that is a good  or not.  I just hope that it is the end for a while.

His first visit was when he was two.  When he dipped his hands in anti-freeze and licked them.  A story I am ashamed to even mention and a very scary moment for me.  Thankfully, this is the one and only time I have ever had to call Poison Control.  The woman on the other end of the line was very kind and patient with me.  She told me she would alert the ER that I was on my way.  She strongly stressed and reminded me to drive SLOWLY many times during our conversation.

Charlie had a close call when he was about five years old.  We were playing in the barn with a friend, when Charlie got pushed off a round bale and landed on his feet and then fell to his knees.  A stick or piece of wood from the floor jabbed into his knee.  The clinic had an opening with one of our favorite PAs.

Charlie’s second visit to the ER was for many, many bee stings (click here for that story) on his birthday camping trip when he turned six.  We never got a count of how many times he got stung.  In the photos that Jack took I can count about 32 on his back and on his front in this photo I can count about 35.  There were more stings on his sides, his ears, head and arms that we can’t see in the photos.  His lower part of his body was not stung as much because he jumped in the water.  Smart boy!

Bee Sting Charlie 1

The third visit to the ER happened last week.

ER Charlie finger 2

Our school had a two-hour delay because of bad weather – cold temps, drifting and ice-covered roads.  Instead of the bus coming at 6:30 it would be picking the boys up at 8:30 with school starting at 10:10.  I had to take bars to church for a funeral, go to the library, and grocery store so I decided I would drive them.  Long before we needed to leave I fed the dogs and  started the car to take the chill out of the car and melt the ice on my windshield.  At 9:15, I asked Charlie to run out to the car to turn it off.   I was finishing up frying eggs for breakfast.  My back was to the door that goes outside.  He ran out, I heard “that sound” when something gets in the way of the door closing.  I held my breath waiting for screaming and then the door slammed shut.  Then a second later Charlie came running into the house screaming bloody-murder with a very bloody finger.  It took him a second or two to realize that his finger was hurt from slamming it in the door.  The first slam was his shirt and the second slam was his finger.  His nail came out of the nail base and was hanging from his finger tip.    I grabbed a napkin and got him comfortable on a chair.  Robbie brought me a wet cloth, an ice pack and a couple of towels.   Charlie put a little pressure on his finger, it hurt really bad.  We peeked at it and it looked really bad!  I started to freak out.  I called Jack first and left a message.   I called the clinic next.  A nurse was available and we talked about what happened, what his finger looked like and the nurse, bless her heart, very gently said, “You will need to take him to the emergency room.  I will call them and tell them you are coming.”    Before we got off the phone the sweet nurse reminded me, “This isn’t a life threatening emergency for Charlie, so please drive slowly!”

I needed to drive slowly the roads were ice-covered and in a place where there is  a huge open field, the snow drifts were all the way across the south bound lane, and the snow plow was heading north.   I had to come to a complete stop for him to go by and so I could drive around the drifts.

I kept telling myself to drive slowly and prayed for us to get there safely.  I met a lot of cars  as I was leaving town because everyone was taking their kids to school.  Once we got through the next town the on-coming traffic wasn’t constant.  That is when we came upon four cars following a snow plow at a very slow speed.   I cried all the way there, tried to take deep breaths and kept apologizing to Charlie.  I was thankful for snow plows to keep me driving slowly and clearing our way.   There were many times when the snow plow would disappear into a puff of snow when the plow would hit a snow drift.

When we arrived at the ER we were the only ones there and they took us right away.  I was thankful for the tablet as a distraction because I think he would have just sat there thinking about the pain.   I was able to calm down and prepare myself for the rest of the visit.  I like gross things.  This injury was pretty close to sending me over the edge.  It could have been the stress, worry and the hot emergency room that was making me feel like I was going to throw up.

ER Charlie finger 3

The nail is still on in this photo.  The doctor cut it off after his finger was numb.  His finger was poked at least 10 times to numb it.  Charlie did very well, slowly counting to 10 with me for all the poking.  Dr. Bob was the same ER doctor we had when Robbie got stitches.

ER Charlie finger 1

 

Charlie got his first set of stitches.  I am not even sure how many.  I will have to find out and update this post.

Itemized bill:

Lidocaine – $35.20

X-Ray Exam – $166

X-Ray Reading – $23.21

Procedure done in ER – $133.00

Emergency Dept. Visit – $580

ER PHY-Minor – $73.00

Repair of nail bed – $274.00

Total – $1,284.41

As we were getting our discharge papers Charlie said, “This wasn’t as bad as all my bee stings!”  Really?  I am so thankful I was not there for the bee stings!

Charlie didn’t want to go to school to finish the day.  (I wouldn’t have let him go to school.)  He told me, “Because when someone comes to school with a owie everyone stands around them and wants to see it.  And I don’t want to talk about it with them.”  He was very uncomfortable for the next 24 hours.

Twenty-four hours later his finger still looked horrible and not so gross to me.    We soaked it on and off all day in attempts to take the bandage off.  The gauze was stuck.  I should have asked for the non-stick gauze because that is what I use at home and it works!  We needed to pull the last three layers of gauze off strand by stand.

We have given it air, kept it clean and a bandage for the day time.

ER Charlie finger bandage ER Charlie finger open

On Monday Charlie came home from school and told me, “I showed everyone in my class my finger.  The only person that didn’t get grossed out was Gavin.”

 

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Week 34 – August 20 – 26, 2012

Week 34 – August 20 – 26, 2012

(Completed 9/24/12)

Henry is the best helper.  And such a cute one too!

Henry and I picked more broccoli this week.  I have been picking broccoli by sneaking in the garden so Henry wouldn’t see what I was doing.  I didn’t want him to do it without me and do it wrong.  I wasn’t able to be sneaky today.

I was impressed how well he cut the broccoli with the scissors.  Yes, I let my 3-year-old use adult scissors!  He did it so well I bet I could send him to the garden to pick some for a meal.  I was reminded again that he can do so many things, and he can do it “my way”, I mean the right way, if and when I show him how to do things correctly and safely.

This has been the best year for our broccoli.  I have eight plants and they have produced tons of broccoli for us.  I am thinking I want more plants next year.

Then I turn my back and my awesome helper (Henry) cuts 25 stalks of my milo and corn!  When I asked him why, “Me don’t like them being tall!”  Here is a milo stalk he cut that is actually growing back.  The corn stalks didn’t grow back.

Henry must have been encouraged to do more jobs for me today after doing so well at cutting broccoli and feeling badly about cutting my milo and corn. Because he collected eggs without me.  He carried them in his shirt and unloaded them on to my junk table.  No broken eggs this time!

I had an evening meeting and this is what I came home to…

These boys are getting too big for me to carry them out of my bed.

I took a few photos in the garden this week:

This one is of the biggest mullein plants (Verbascum Thapsus) I have ever seen.    I have been saving these weeds all over our property for drying and making tea with the leaves.  I learned of this from a friend and was reminded about mullein from my midwives when I had a horrible cold during my pregnancy with Nola Mae.  Henry can spot it anywhere.  We went for a walk to our neighbors and walked through her yard rather than up her driveway.  Henry ran past a tiny mullein plant and said, “there is yours mullein!”

Wikipedia:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verbascum_thapsus

The many uses of mullein:

http://www.naturalnews.com/033990_mullein_medicinal_herbs.html

My first handful of raspberries!

I did not grow basil this year.  I was given some from a friend and my sister-in-law.  Henry and I are the only ones that eat pesto.

Nola Mae has started to do the Superman/airplane pose.

And now that she is rolling over.  I find her sleeping on her belly, which is cute but also makes me nervous.  This girl always has her hand in her face, something I will never forget!  Giving birth to a baby with her hand on her face is quite painful and unforgettable!

Charlie turned seven years old this week!  He wanted to decorate his own cake with Star Wars ships on it.

Charlie wanted to go camping for his birthday.  Jack took all three boys to Brunette Island State Park.  They met other family members there.

On Sunday morning Charlie got stung many times by hornets when he stepped onto a nest on an island they had been playing on all weekend.  We will never know how many times. He wouldn’t let me count the marks.

I can count 32 sting marks in the photo of his back.

The best cousin, Sarah, read to him to help him feel better.

Charlie did not have an allergic reaction to the stings.  Jack did take him to an ER where he got an IV of fluids and we got the bill:

IV Therapy = $294

Sterile Supply = $74.50

Emergency Room = $332

Pharmacy = $212.75

Professional Fee/ER = $498

Total = $1411.25

(A month later and I don’t know what our insurance will pay)

Uncle Eddie took these photos in the ER.  When Charlie saw them he remembered more things to tell me about this experience.

“I was soooo tired I couldn’t fall asleep.”

“I remember those blankets.  They were REALLY warm!  And it felt good when they put it on top of me.”

“I’m never going camping for my birthday EVER again!”

Jack said it was helpful that his brother went along with him and that he had the GPS in the car, so all he had to do was to touch the arrow on the screen to see where the closest hospital was and hit “Go.”

Project 365 Week 7

Project 365 Week 6

Project 365:  Take a photo a day and see your life in a whole new way.

2/13/11 (Sunday) –  My wake-up crew took pictures of me sleeping, the flash was my wake up call.  I won’t scare you with those photos.  Instead here are two of the four handsome faces I wake up for every day. 

 

2/14/11 (Monday) Charlie’s farm.

 

2/15/11 (Tuesday) – I picked this apron pattern from The Apron Book  Making, Wearing, and Sharing a Bit of Cloth and Comfort by EllynAnne Geisel and vowed to myself to follow the pattern’s directions to a ‘T’!  

 

I wanted to prove to myself that I can follow directions,  I FAILED!    

Early in the directions I learned the pattern isn’t making this exact apron (matching waist-line fabric and bottom of apron fabric).  The directions were for the apron skirt to be in one piece – no bottom border.  I wanted my apron to look similar to the photo!  I already had my  fabric picked out and my vision was set.  I modified the design. 

My apron:

 

2/16/11 (Wednesday) – Playing outside in the first meltdown puddles.

Henry found brown grass to feed Vanilla.

 

2/17/11 (Thursday) – Busy day: skiing with friends in the fog,

 

Gym class with Robbie for Jump Rope for Heart,

 

and a visit to the emergency room.

 

 2/18/11 (Friday) – Dominos at nap-time.

  

2/19/11 (Saturday) – Iola Winter Sports Club Youth Ski Program – roasting hot dogs on the trail and reading The Race of the Birkebeiners by Lise Lunge-Larsen. 

 We took the long way back to the chalet with Aunt Becca.

 

2/20/11 (Sunday) – Our sledding date was cancelled due to the lack of snow.  Instead we went bowling with our friends.  Jack was the photographer, not a bowler!   (The rest of the photos were taken by Jack)

 Later in the day a snow storm arrived.  Our drive home from bowling was a little scary.  Playing in the snow was a lot of fun!

Emergency Room Visit – Robbie

Last week Robbie needed to go the emergency room to get stitches on his hand.

Robbie got off the school bus and went straight to the garden to play with Charlie. Apparently, Charlie was throwing snow balls at him and he wanted a stick so he could hit the snow balls. Robbie grabbed a milo stalk (a.k.a. broom corn), broke it and then pulled on it to detach it from the rest of the stalk.   The stalk sliced the skin in between his forefinger and thumb.   He told me pulling on it worked but then he realized his hand hurt, then he looked at it and saw A LOT of blood and that is when he started running for the house.

I was in the house waiting for Robbie and Charlie to come in after getting off the bus. (I watch them periodically through the windows while I am making dinner or trying to get my last-minute jobs done before they finally reach the house.)  I saw Robbie sprinting to the house. I didn’t think much of his sprinting to the house today.  The day before he was playing in the haymow and I saw him sprinting to the house because he had to go to the bathroom. It wasn’t until he was closer that I could see the expression on his face wasn’t “I’m pooping my pants!” It was more like “I’M HURT!”  That is when I noticed his bloody hand.

We washed it and put pressure on it. I peaked at it and it was REALLY BAD! I used my Screamfree Parenting techniques  and stayed very calm. I got him comfortable on the couch and made phone calls to Jack, Marlene (our neighbor) and the clinic. Since it was close to the end of the day there were no openings in the clinic so we had to go the ER.  Jack was able to leave work early, but it was going to take him a long time to get home because of the fog. I didn’t want to wait because Robbie was in a lot of pain.  Thankfully, Marlene was able to come over and stay with Charlie and Henry.

Seven stitches.

Robbie in the garden by the milo with bandage on his hand.

The stalk that cut his hand.

Milo in August.

I learned while working for Aurora Community Services NEVER to go to the hospital or ER without a book and snacks.  Because you never know how long you will wait.  Our wait wasn’t too long.   The books were a great distraction in the waiting room  and during the time the stitches were being put in.  I just happened to have one of Robbie’s favorite books along, Souper Chicken by Mary Jane Auch.    I read that book many times!

The nurse, Susan, was wonderful!  So was the doctor.  Susan told Robbie that he did an awesome job and she has seen many adults who couldn’t handle that kind of situation as well as he did.  I think that compliment really stuck with him because he talked about that a few more times that night and the next day.

Before leaving our room Robbie left this note.  Later he told me it was supposed to be for the nurse.

I feel fortunate that this is only his second visit to the ER.  Because Robbie told me just days before this incident, “I look for dangerous things.”

The first ER visit was when he was almost 4 years old.  He got bit by this bat that was stuck in a burdock plant behind our garage.