Well, the tears have parted, albeit briefly, so I am going to attempt to tell you about our Saturday. I hope this makes yours look great! If it doesn’t….oh my gosh. I am so sorry for your trial!
Friday evening, Tiny Dancer stuck a popcorn kernel in her ear. I’ve dealt with a popcorn seeds, and other small things, in a few noses so far, but this is my first (and I’m saying it now, LAST) ear incident. Of course, we did not try to get it out ourselves. We did not attempt to both flush and float it out with ear solution. We did not attempt to suck it out with a hospital grade bulb syringe. And we did not try to lubricate the little sucker with olive oil. These things are better left to a professional, and we are smart enough to know that!
We could see the kernel (in good light with the ear tilted just right), but we just couldn’t get to it. Papa Bear wanted to go to the emergency room right then, but I thought we should wait till morning. We were all heading to Taos for groceries then anyway, and I didn’t think it was necessary to make the trip twice.
So, Saturday morning, I woke up, made cinnamon rolls, and got everyone dressed. I thought we had moved pretty quickly, but by the time was got to Taos it was lunch time. Tiny Dancer seemed happy and pain-free, so we stopped at Pizza Hut (the Pizza Hut with the slowest service on planet earth for ten years and running), and had a nice, leisurely, lunch.
Then, we were off to the the ER! I had packed a bag of puzzles, books, and sippy cups, and really, I naively thought we were prepared for the hour or two wait. Of course, it was actually a four hour wait.
What I wasn’t prepared for….
1) The sliding door that opens whenever your child walks (runs, skips) past it
2) The unhappy sick people
3) The man with the Ebola Virus
The first two hours weren’t as bad as the second two. Papa Bear and Tiny Dancer were still waiting with us, and Tiny Dancer was happy. But, the puzzles weren’t as great of an idea as I had thought. The waiting room chairs are slightly slanted with a gap in the back. So we (a pregnant woman and a man who recently injured his ribs at work) spent two hours picking puzzle pieces up off the floor.
About 45 minutes into our wait, I noticed a man in the corner–shaking and moaning. I stared at him with a fake smile that I’m pretty sure did not mask my terror. Under my breath, I pointed him out to Papa Bear, and we corralled our kids into the germ free protection of…umm…the other side of the room. Although I have a love/hate relationship with vaccines and am scared of most of them, I suddenly became very grateful that my kids are all current. That is, until I remembered that there is no vaccine for the Ebola Virus. I flashed the dying man another terrified smile, to which he responded in a dramatic whisper, “I am soooo sick.”
Papa Bear and Tiny Dancer were finally called back through the doors while I waited with the other three. In a matter of seconds, I seemed to metamorphosize (in the eyes of the waiting room crowd) from “the wife and mother in a loving family” to “The Old Woman in the Shoe.” I clearly had too many children. A few of them even spotted my belly with a horror that was much less masked than mine was towards Ebola Man.
Eventually, I took them for a walk around the hospital realizing that three hours was just too long for any toddler to have to sit in one place. After our walk, we returned to wait for another half-hour or so. By then, the waiting room had cleared, so I was able to give them a little more freedom.
When I saw the shoulder of Papa Bear’s shirt through the hospital door’s tiny window, I almost burst into tears. He came through carrying a very haggard version of my beautiful daughter. Her hair was huge, and her cheeks seemed to be permanently stained with tears. Then, I looked at Papa Bear.
He shook his head mournfully, “They couldn’t get it. We have to wait here until they can get us some antibiotic drops. They’re going to send us to Santa Fe on Monday.”
He then recapped the horror and heartbreak of his side of the experience. He told me how Tiny Dancer had broken the nurses hearts by saying, “Please, please no. I want my sister to do it.”
By this point, everyone was exhausted. Cuddle Bug collapsed on my shoulder in tears. Lil Prince passed out (something he does from time to time) because he was upset that I was comforting Cuddle Bug and not him.
While we sat waiting for the drops, our real reason for being there was completely imperceptible. That is, any one of us could have been dying. Cuddle Bug stayed sniffling on my shoulder until I felt something warm and…
I lifted her head to find it covered in blood.
“Oh my gosh. Ebola!”
I rushed her to the bathroom, wiped her face, and stopped the nose bleed.
Upon leaving the bathroom, I said, “If your nose is stuffy, please tell mama. STOP sticking your finger up there.” I said it loud enough for people to hear–just in case anyone tried blame us for the upcoming Ebola outbreak.
So, we’re heading to Santa Fe on Monday morning. Please pray for us, and please, please, pray that the doc will be successful! Also, if you’d like to pray that it will just pop out tonight, that’d be great! I’ll let you know how it goes.