Posted on | February 18, 2011 | 12 Comments

J has a broken arm and I have a broken spirit.  But we’re both repairing… slowly.  If you missed the firestorm that was my twitter stream last night, let me recap:

5:00- I got home from work, ready to enjoy my first night to myself all week. Husband and I had decided to send J to daycare because his fever was gone in the morning and we thought it might have just been a fluke.  So Husband planned to pick him up so I could enjoy some “me” time.

6:00 – Husband got home with J and mentioned “something might be wrong.” Apparently J had cried when Husband picked him up out of the car… but not when he put him in.

6:15-6:30: We ate dinner, watching J refuse to use his right arm at all. For anything. Momma’s spidey sense was tingling.

6:30-6:45: J had a bath and cried the whole time while Momma waited (im)patiently for Nurse One to return her call.

6:45 – 7:15: J snuggled with Husband on the sofa in his PJs while Momma STILL waited for a return call.

7:15: Nurse One calls back and says based on the information provided, he was probably fine and we could wait to see a doctor.

7:16: Momma said “screw Nurse One” and headed to the Emergency Room.

Roughly four hours later, we were on our way back home with a sleepy little boy in little red pajamas that couldn’t fit over his broken arm.

Yep. Read that right. Arm was broken. Just above the wrist.  The doctor said it could have happened just from a normal fall and catching himself the wrong way. The Momma was a mess of anger and fear and worry and stress and did I mention anger?  Something had happened to my son and I wasn’t there.  He’s not old enough to tell me what happened or how long he’d been hurting. It was like one of my worst fears sprung to life and danced a jig with knives for feet on my heart.

I sat up a long time last night.  I drank half a glass of wine and ate way too much garlic hummus (because, hello? That solves everything.) I decided I needed to sit down with his daycare director and figure out what happened because clearly it wasn’t their fault that he broke his arm.  I know that.  Accidents happen.  Kids get hurt.  I wasn’t blaming them for the broken arm… I just wanted to know why no one seemed to notice that it was broken.

This morning I sat down with the Assistant Director and had a long chat.  And the repairing began.  We pinpointed when the accident happened… it was in the morning, on the way out to the playground. The kids were excited about going outside and they were bunched together at the door. J took a fall down onto the concrete platform just outside the door.  He got up.  He brushed himself off.  He didn’t cry at all.  He never indicated a single problem all day long.

It’s hard to process.  I’ll admit that.  I know that my kid was hurting last night, but even Husband didn’t think anything was wrong when he picked him up.  The only thing we can figure is that he was so busy at daycare, so happy, so intent on playing with his friends and his toys, that he didn’t stop to pay any attention to his arm.  It wasn’t until he got home and relaxed with his parents that he started to notice the pain.

I don’t know what to believe.  I know that I have never gotten a bad feeling from this daycare.  I don’t think he’s being mistreated in any way.  But I’d be lying if I said I was perfectly fine with ever letting my little boy out of my sight again.

It’s a small fracture.

It will heal.
It will just take some time.


12 Responses to “Repairing…”

  1. Kristin @ Peace, Love and Muesli
    February 18th, 2011 @ 5:18 pm

    It will take time. Having a good feeling about his daycare and a good relationship with the staff will help.
    It’s possible his arm didn’t hurt until later in the day, until it started swelling.
    My 6yo broke her arm, just above the wrist too, when she was 13 months. Walking right beside me. It was 3 days before we realized it wasn’t getting better. 3 days of swimming and playing. The only tears were when the X-ray technician was handling it.
    Hope you are both in better spirits soon

  2. Shelley
    February 18th, 2011 @ 5:23 pm

    I know you are an attorney. I am an insurance agent. Have the daycare report this accident to their insurance.

    I hope he is feeling much better today.

  3. R's Mom
    February 18th, 2011 @ 5:28 pm

    Just to echo the first poster, my husband broke his wrist in a really wierd place…and it took four weeks to realize it was broken! And it’s not because he just ignored the pain…it just wans’t that painful at first. But, when it did finally begin hurting, he was in a lot of pain…which is what led him to the doctor for an xray.

    I hope J (and you) feel better soon!

  4. Kathy
    February 18th, 2011 @ 5:41 pm

    Aww.. Poor J:( Kids get hurt no matter how awesome of parents we are or how awesome the daycare is. If your gut is telling you the daycare is good, its good. I am sure the teachers are feeling badly for the accident and are wondering how they missed it. But like many people will tell you, fractures get worse over time and there may not have been anything initially…. Hope you all feel better soon.

  5. Andrea
    February 18th, 2011 @ 5:49 pm

    I think that you’re right on what happened and why it didn’t bother him for so long. I actually walked around with a broken arm for 5 days when I was a kid. And my mom’s a nurse!

  6. Rebekah @ mom-in-a-million
    February 18th, 2011 @ 6:18 pm

    True story: When I was too young to be talking I slipped on an area rug and broke my arm. My mom (the nurse) and my dad (the doctor) didn’t think anything was wrong for THREE DAYS until they realized that I wasn’t sticking my arm through my shirt like normal. It was only then that they took me in to a doctor.

    I like to use that when I’m trying to make my mother feel guilty about something.

    C fell at daycare about a year ago and cut his head badly enough to need stitches. He just tripped over his own little feet and had the bad luck to hit the corner of a wall on his way down and cut his forehead. In an odd way, that accident and the way his teachers handled it gave me more faith in them and their ability to care for my son. They were like a well-oiled machine when he got hurt. Do I feel guilty that I wasn’t there when he fell or when the EMTs wear cleaning him up and putting him on gurney to go to the ER for stitches? Yes. But I got there in time to ride in the ambulance with him. And I know that I can trust his teachers to get him help and give him comfort while they wait for me to arrive. That’s the best we working parents can hope for.

  7. TheNextMartha
    February 18th, 2011 @ 6:20 pm

    I think the hardest part for you is that you were not there for him. Sigh. That’s hard. So sorry.

  8. TheNextMartha
    February 18th, 2011 @ 6:22 pm

    I should say the FIRST hardest part is that your son has a broken arm. And seeing him that way is heartbreaking.

  9. Jessica @ Raising an Owlet
    February 18th, 2011 @ 8:07 pm

    Oh no. I hope you and J are feeling better soon. I agree with TheNextMartha, the hardest thing is that you weren’t there when it happened. Give him lots of loves and you’ll both start to feel better.

  10. KristinaYellow
    February 20th, 2011 @ 6:07 pm

    This is such a big fear of mine-I’m always paranoid that my little one will get hurt when I’m not there. We’ve had our ER trip-ended up being nursemaid’s elbow–but still can’t imagine dealing with a break.
    Hopefully your daycare will keep this in mind-all falls should be reported to parents, even if the child appears ok.

  11. Cheryl @ Mommypants
    February 21st, 2011 @ 10:55 pm

    I know it’ll take you longer to heal than it will take J. I’m so sorry this happened, but yay for your mother’s intuition. We so know when things aren’t right.

    Hugs to you!

  12. Steph
    March 15th, 2011 @ 11:29 pm

    When I was 5 I broke my leg jumping down a flight of stairs. My parents were bowling and the next door neighbor was babysitting us. I cried all night and wouldn’t stop. She called my parents and they said to give me Tylenol and they’d be home soon. My mom put me in a bath (hot water and broken bones don’t mix) and I screamed. She put me to bed and I cried and whined all night long. The next day I was still crying but there was no outward sign of a problem with my leg. Above my dad’s protests that I was fine, she took me in to the ER where our doctor met her (that’s when your actual doctor cared enough to meet you at the ER, before you saw strangers) and my leg was fractured clean through. She has felt guilty for years. Even more so when she became a nurse and learned how bad the heat from the bath was for my leg. She was a stay at home mom and she still lives the guilt 33 years later. (I might use it a tad when I need to make her laugh too). The doctor told her those clean breaks are missed ALL of the time, he said arms are more common than legs.

    Also. Mine broke his wrist at school two months ago. Probably almost exactly the same break J has. He was at school where he’s legally required to be, away from me. I didn’t know until 3:30. He hid it all day so he wouldn’t be told he couldn’t play hockey. UGH! He’s had two major injuries and both have been at school. I would love to keep him safe here forever but I’d go to jail (or we’d kill each other if I home schooled) and bubble wrap isn’t an option unfortunately. Something about plastic not being good enough to breathe through (someone should do something about that). Kids get broken and when they do mom’s always break too. But we mend. It’s just what we do. ((((HUGS))))

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