Thursday, November 29, 2007

First stitches!

Yes, we've had our first real injury here at the Moothart household. Stitches for Jonathan - five of them! Last Monday morning we were walking into Ashley's apartment complex. She was going to babysit the boys for me while I went to a doctor appointment. On the way in, Jonathan tripped and fell into the grass beside the pathway. He started crying hard, but it was muddy and I thought he was just over-reacting (as he often does!) to getting mud on his hands and clothing. Until he stood up and held up his badly bleeding hand.

I felt like a very deserving recipient of the Official Bad Mother Award.

Jonathan's palm was sliced open over half-way across. And it looked deep. Ashley came to the rescue with her first aid kit and we got the bleeding stopped, but I was pretty sure that this was more serious than something that would just heal on its own. Jonathan's reaction added to my worry - after the initial loud crying he calmed down - too much. He cuddled his hand against his body, shivered a little, snuggled against me and said "Mommy, I want to go to sleep". And then proceeded to try really hard to do just that. His breathing slowed down, his eyes closed, and while I knew he wasn't really quite asleep it was pretty scary watching that kind of shut-down reflex.

So I did spend the morning in a doctor's office - just not the one I'd planned on! Thankfully Jonathan's pediatrician said to come right in, even though their morning appointments were all full. I'm so glad they treated my concern as valid, and didn't just assume that I was being an over-reactive mom. That's one reason why I like this doctor so much!

The nurse brought us back to a procedure room, took one look at J's hand and said "oh yes, that will need stitches." Then we waited for about an hour for the doctor to come. Jonathan continued his attempts to fall asleep and actually did sleep for most of the wait.

Poor child, though, what a way to wake up. Stitches may not sound like anything too traumatic, but they really are. Yes, they numbed his hand, but the process of making it numb almost seemed as bad as just stitching him up without it. They did let me hold him throughout the procedure, for which I was grateful. I had been afraid they would just strap him down to the table (it was equipped with restraints). So I held him, and talked to him, and sang to him, and tried to make it a little less frightening.

He really was awfully brave. He cried a lot but never totally lost control - he's respond to my voice and tell me what songs I should sing next and why he was crying: "Does it hurt?" "No, I'm just scared!"

And then at the end, during the last stitch, I covered myself in glory (ha!) by coming very close to throwing up and fainting. I didn't. But it was definitely too close for comfort. Dr. Miyamoto says that it happens all the time and that moms quite routinely pass out in procedure rooms. He just called a nurse to come stand behind me in case I fell over, and then when we were finished had me sit in a chair holding Jonathan and drink orange juice before he let us leave. This is another reason I like this doctor so much: he's kind, and matter-of-fact about everything!

I comfort myself with the fact that some mothers would have passed out at the first sight of blood, and I waited for a good four hours. :)

We got a strawberry milkshake (his choice) afterward because he'd been so brave. I think he's not quite sure what "brave" means, though, because while we were driving back to Ashley's to pick up Thomas he asked me multiple times "Mommy, why was I so brave?" And then after a lot of explanations, he stated emphatically "Mommy, I don't want to be brave." I'm pretty sure what he meant was that he never wants stitches again!

Here is a photo of the aftermath: he stayed sleepy and sad for quite awhile.

Jonathan's hand is healing beautifully, and the stitches are scheduled to be removed tomorrow morning. Gabe is going to take him for that appointment!


Anonymous said...

Dear Jonathan,

I have to agree. From reading Mommy's blog, it sounds like you were very brave. And being brave can be a very good and noble thing. I'm glad to hear that your hand is healing well. We've been praying for you!

Lots of love,
Grandmommy and Granddad

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on handling your first injury. You and Jonathan did such a good job!! Your story brought back memories. When Allegra was about two, she fell and got a deep cut beside her eye. I went through the whole pediatrician visit, not unlike yours. I held her while he did the stitching – they needed her head to be very still. The lights were so bright and they had to shine them right on her eyes. I was in some kind of altered state throughout. Occasionally my regular self would think “my, you’re doing rather well”, but mostly I was in mother-emergency mode and I did whatever was required of me. Afterwards, I went over to your mother’s house (we lived nearby then). She answered the door, surprised to see me, and said “what brings you here”. Mother-emergency mode vanished in an instant. I burst into tears and handed Allegra to her, and it was awhile before I could talk. Aunt Sharan

Amber said...

Oh my, poor little guy! I'm glad his hand is feeling better, but that's too bad that he had to experience stitches as such a little guy!