How did you spend your Sunday afternoon? Maybe you were enjoying a break in the weather and taking in some long overdue sunshine... maybe you were getting ready to go do dinner for Abby's 16th Birthday... maybe you were getting out your pen to make your list of to-do's for the week...
Us... well, we spent our Sunday afternoon in the Emergency Room.
This was definately Not the way we intended to spend our first few hours back home, after being gone since Wednesday. We were Supposed to be getting ready to go to dinner for Abby's 16th Birthday! Instead, we found ourselves rushing to the ER with our littlest man, who was bleeding from his ear.
After some parental panic and "convincing" that he would not get in "too much" trouble, we got Clayton to tell us that while playing doctor with his little brother, Maybe he had stuck a digital thermometer into the little guy's ear! Wow! They had been playing so great together and it was clear that it was an accident, still... the thermometer has gone on to it's final resting place.
So, we dropped Clayton off with Grandma and Papa and headed for the ER. Cole was more than overdue for a nap and sitting in the car with his blanket, he must have gotten comfortable, because he kept trying to fall asleep. All I could think was that he was starting to pass out, and I did everything I could to keep him awake until we got there.
Due to his age and the fact that he had blood in his ear, we were thrilled (kind of ironic to be thrilled while standing in an ER, don't you think? ), well, we were ... thrilled to be pulled Immediately into triage. The young nurse was very sweet with Cole, and assured us that he Loves screaming children, because, "That mean's that they are OK." He proceeded to take a rectal temperature, to which Cole responded with an even Bigger wail! Poor little guy... I'm even more thankful for the Temporal Thermometer my mom bought us when he was born! He's Never going to want to have his temperature taken Ever. Again! Then he hooked up a heart monitor to our little guy's big toe, which brought another Wail! Finally, he looked into his ear and told us that there was, "nothing in there." While this was a relief, we still had to wait to see the physician's assistant to see exactly what damage there was.
When we finally got him checked completely, we were told that he had a punctured eardrum. Wow. Again. Ok, so after a deep breath, we realized that this was the news we actually had been, sort of, expecting to hear. Not hoping, but expecting. That was the bad news. The good news was that 90% of punctured eardrum injuries will heal on their own, and we were told to make an appointment to have him rechecked in 10 days. The bad news... in the remaining 10% of these cases, the injury does not heal on it's own and we would be referred to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist for further treatment options.
We left with prescriptions for two pain medications and an antibiotic to help prevent any infection over the next week and a half, as well as instructions to, "Keep, It. Dry." Any moisture that gets in past the eardrum, will sit there and deteriorate the bones behind it that register sound waves. A cotton ball and Vaseline will be our new bath time buddies.
The next adventure was to find a 24-Hour Pharmacy. After a 45 minute search, we found one only a few blocks from the hospital, which will be noted for future ER visits... though we don't anticipate any in the near future, we do need to deal with the reality of raising two Boys.
For now... we're hoping that we are fortunate enough to fall into the 90% category. Truly, only time will tell. As for Cole, after the first dose of pain medication started to set in, he was chasing his cousins around Grandma and Papa's house and we were able to Finally enjoy cake and ice cream for Abby's 16th Birthday! Today, he's playing around as if nothing is out of the ordinary. Big brother has been "grounded" as much as a 4 year-old can be, and has been assigned to helping us remember to keep Cole's ear covered and dry during bath time and to give him his medicine.
My darling husband was less than thrilled when I pointed out that it's very likely we'll see a few more ER visits in our future. I pointed out that my parents took me in for stitches on three separate occasions, and I was "just a girl." Oh, the adventures of being a parent. Anyone else visited the ER with their little one lately?