Before I tell you the story, I should mention that I feel sick writing about this and it happened a year ago now. But here we go anyway. Here is the story of my child’s first serious injury.
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Best day EVER
It’s 2017, the kid is 16 months old, I am 3 months pregnant.
It was going to be a GREAT day! We were going to SeaWorld! It was the middle of the week and we were going with some friends who were visiting from overseas, so the Husband wasn’t there.
It’s first thing in the morning and we’re off to the dolphin show! YAY DOLPHINS! Like, who doesn’t like dolphins?
Me. I don’t like dolphins. Not anymore.
I’m getting ahead of myself.
So, it’s hot, I’m in early pregnancy, I had to climb a mountain (a whoooole bunch of stairs) to get to the top of the stadium type seating that cascades down. The seats are metal and there is no backing, hard to explain but I couldn’t find a decent picture, sorry.
SO, we find the perfect spot in the middle of the arena, I sit down, and sit the kid down next to me. It did cross my mind to put her in my lap, but I just carried her up Mt Everest and I was hot and tired and just wanted to put our bags down and settle in.
Now, what I didn’t think about was that the cascading stadium seating is made of a highly slippery metal type material.
As I placed the kid down next to me and turned my head away from her to put the bags down, I turned back just in time to see the fall. With a speed I didn’t think possible, I watched her slip off her seat and go face first into the metal seat in front of her.
Then there was silence
I had a moment of pure silence.
As she lifted her little head to look at me, I saw my shock reflected in her face. But her own shock then turned into pain and she started wailing.
As I pick her up, I immediately knew. I knew that this wasn’t just a bit of a smack in the face. This was serious. I felt it in my bones.
While I’m processing what just happened, she’s now screaming and I walk us back up to the top of the stairs. By the time I reach the top, I am covered in blood.
We need medical attention
One of our friends calls the first aid lady and we wait. The kid is crying. I’m trying to distract her because by this stage my shirt and her shirt are just full of blood, there aren’t enough wet wipes in the world to help us.
And the dolphins, the dolphins are doing all sorts of crazy shit behind me, they’re flipping, they’re jumping, they’re dancing kolo and the kid will not stop crying.
First aid lady
The first aid lady arrives. She tries to have a look at the kid’s mouth and I’m praying that her teeth are ok, I even say it out loud, because she hit her mouth so hard.
She lifts the kid’s top lip, looks, and says to me “ok, her front teeth are gone, she’s either swallowed them or they’ve fallen out where you were sitting”.
This Is It – My Child’s First Serious Injury
Her teeth are gone.
In that moment, I think I was in such shock that I didn’t react. I knew what I was hearing, but I couldn’t cry, I couldn’t move, I just knew that I needed to be there for my daughter and hold her and keep it together.
This was complete and utter shock and auto pilot took over.
We pack up and get in the first aid lady’s car, the kid is sitting in the front seat with me, attached to me like a little koala. We get into first aid and they give her some pain relief.
They suggest that we go to the dentist but I think to myself, what are they going to do if there are shards of teeth still left in her mouth? I’m no doctor, but by my calculations, if the teeth are still there, they will need to be removed and there’s no other way of doing that then to put my daughter under a general anesthetic.
Calling the Husband
This is when I managed to call the Husband and tell him. But what did I say? I can’t even remember. As soon as he picked up, I finally found my tears and started to cry, totally freaking him out.
It’s one of those calls where it’s like, it’s ok, we’re alive, nothing is actually really wrong, except the kid fell and lost her front teeth.
The Husband, wonderful as ever, probably said something calming and soothing, not that I remember because my brain was helping my body move but wasn’t really working.
Next stop – Hospital
Our next stop is the Hospital.
This is the part where I tell you about the extremely sexy doctor. I mean, he was tall and gorgeous and he was blowing bubbles for the kid and making her laugh and I was like, ok, no teeth isn’t that bad, right Dr Sexy?
Anywho, when the pediatrician comes to see us and has a look and gives me the great news – the teeth are still there! They have just been pushed back into the gums!
They suggest we go to the kid dentist (not a dentist who is a kid, rather one that looks at kids’ teeth), just to make sure that the permanent teeth won’t be effected. They tell me not to give the kid too much food or water in case she needs to go under a general anesthetic.
By now, it’s been hours, we haven’t eaten or had anything to drink since before “the incident”. She must be hungry, but I offer nothing, lest she throw up whilst unconscious.
Telling the family
I make an appointment to see a dentist straight away and the appointment is in an hour. The kid falls asleep in the car on the way to the dentist and I find my way to the carpark, make sure she’s ok whilst she sleeps, and then I lose my shit and cry uncontrollably for a good 10-15 minutes.
I text my mother who used to be a dentist, I don’t even know how to tell her what’s happened.
How am I gonna tell the rest of the family? They are all so devoted to the first born granddaughter, they will straight up be mad at me for letting her get hurt.
What will I do if this effects her permanent teeth?
How will I get through this day and just get home to my husband so I can just have him be there to hold me and to hold her and to just make it all better?
Next Stop – Dentist
The dentist that sees us is the most delightful, gentle, lovely dude, who tells me the following: They have had up to seven of these injuries in one day, that is how typical they are! In fact, we were the second of the day!
He informed me that the teeth have only been pushed back into the gums and that they will eventually grow back out.
How many of you reading this are like “WHAAAAT??”
Yes, the teeth will grow back out.
Unless they don’t, in which case they will have to be removed. But he’s confident that they will.
I finally give the kid some banana bread that she promptly tucks into, eating with her front teeth, zero fucks given that she no longer has them…
12 months on
Guess what? Her teeth grew back! They have grown back out!
It took me months to recover. I would go to sleep at night and have that mental video replaying in my mind over and over again. If only I had put her on my lap. If only I had my arm around her.
That’s a dangerous and gut wrenching game.
And just as those mental images started disappearing and I got comfortable with life…
…Well, you’ll have to wait for part 2!
Look after your children ya’ll!