On a Wednesday morning, exactly one week before my child would turn six, we found ourselves in the children’s emergency room. After a few quick x-rays and a whole lot of wishful thinking, they told us that our daughter had a broken leg and required a cast.
The worst part was that this is not our first rodeo.
For the second time in less than six years with the same child, we have experienced not one but TWO tibia fractures. Both legs have been broken at different times. There’s not much to say other than this just plain sucked.
Luckily there were some differences in our first and second experiences. The first time around we had a newborn. That was rough. We were already sleep deprived and this just intensified it. This time around the once newborn now toddler still does not sleep so I’ve been sleep deprived for a whole year and a half. I think this means I’m pretty much a pro at running on zero. No change there.
The biggest change is the duration and type of cast. Let me just tell you something. If the doctor tells you your child has to be in a full leg cast with immobilization, just go ahead and start crying right then. It was no easy task to keep a 4-year-old sitting down with her leg elevated for the two weeks. She eventually got a wheelchair and was instantly happier at her ability to get around and return to school. This time around she had a walking cast and walked out of the doctor’s office the next day. This was the only saving grace for this child. I could not imagine her watching her brother play all day long if she had to sit down and be still yet again.
The First Time
Both instances I never saw coming. The first time she was just jumping on a trampoline. We had no idea how dangerous that could be. None the less, this was not something we could have prevented other than not letting her go to trampoline places. I think most parents allow their children to do this unless they too have had a bad experience.
Our Second Go ‘Round
The second time she broke her leg could have been prevented. This time it was more or less our fault. In full disclosure, I had no idea that my child was climbing on her dresser at our old house. She had no idea that her dresser falling was even an option because we had it anchored to the wall. We just simply had not gotten to it at our new house, and she continued to do what she had always done.
By standing on her bottom drawer, she would pull out a bathing suit from the top of her dresser. Except for this time, it was no longer anchored. It fell and miraculously only landed on one leg. She was able to curl her other leg up high enough as it fell that she was only stuck under it with a small portion of her leg. I heard the crashing of glass and clank of pennies and instantly knew what had happened.
Please Anchor Your Furniture
We should have anchored her furniture the same time we did her younger brothers, but we did not. We procrastinated on something so simple that could have prevented this disaster. In fact, if you do not have your child’s furniture anchored to the wall I would STRONGLY suggest you do so. Sooner than later.
In all honesty, I absolutely hate this for her. I hate that she has to start a new school that she’s already nervous about with special circumstances. I hate that she’s been begging for a water slide party at our house for two years and 10 days before her party this happened. I hate that she can’t run around outside or get wet for the next few months. I hated that in the beginning she was crying in pain and saying she wished it never happened again.
Even through all of the things I hate about this situation. I am grateful.
I am grateful she didn’t crush her entire body. I am grateful she didn’t hit her head on her bed. I am grateful her little brother was not being her shadow for one minute of the day. I am grateful she did not get a major incision from the fish tank and ceramic piggy bank that had shards of glass all around her when I rushed in. I am grateful I heard the crash and wasn’t vacuuming or upstairs. I am grateful we have friends at the hospital who came down and reassured her she would be fine. I am grateful she is brave and has taken this like a champ. I am so grateful it was not worse.
This could have been so much worse.