A trip to the ER

Today was a day of the unexpected, unplanned and unpleasant… which is prone to happen when you’re a parent.  Heidi fell while she was running outside today and there was enough blood that we decided to take her directly to the ER.  It turned out that they needed to put her under general anesthesia to put in the stitches.

Before we even knew the diagnosis, Heidi was terrified of the thought of needles, to the point of refusing to go into the car, into the building, into the exam room. She would stiffen up and repeat, “No, mommy, no! I’m not going! I can’t stand it! It’s going to hurt. I don’t want it, I’m not going. No, no, no!”

For my part, I was almost as frightened as her. Before the doctor finally came into the room and looked at her injuries and told us the plan, I kept wondering what was happening… afraid for my daughter, afraid for all of us if this ended up being something more serious than just a few stitches (her injury was pretty bizarre, but I won’t go into details here, to protect Heidi’s privacy). The amount of blood alone was enough to make me feel nauseous. Those are very lonely moments as a parent, when there is no one to hold you and comfort you during your child’s crisis.

Considering Heidi’s almost-hysteria, I found myself caught between my own sense of panic and trying to be cheerful and supportive for my daughter. At one point I admited to her that I was scared, too, but that I also believed that God was with us and knew how frightened we were and would help us face whatever happened next.

The most traumatic part of our little hospital excursion was when they put the IV needle in her hand, in preparation for surgery. She stiffened up and started to panic. One nurse had to hold her arm still while the other put the needle in the vein on top of her hand. She was screaming and crying, but I got down in front of her and held her other hand and said (through my own tears), “Heidi, look at me. Look at my eyes. Don’t watch what they’re doing, look at me, honey! That’s it. Let’s sing our song. I’ll start— Jesus loves me, this I know…”  And my beautiful girl sang through her tears and sobs. She kept looking at me and singing her song even though she hated every minute of what was happening to her and didn’t want to do it. She still sang. She kept looking at her mama’s eyes.

I remember many days when I have sung through my pain– when I didn’t believe the words I was singing, but sang anyway. I would do my best to keep my Savior’s loving gaze, even when I hated what was happening to me and blamed him for it.  Stubborn determination. Stubborn faith in the midst of chaos and the unknown.

You’re a beautiful, brave girl, Heidi. Mama’s proud.

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Loretta
    Jun 23, 2008 @ 14:48:00

    I have to admit I read this with tears in my eyes. We as parents do hurt for our children. We do feel their fears and pain.

    I thought how you handled this was beautiful – sing praises through the pain. I need to remember that!

    Keep on singing!

    Reply

  2. Jennifer
    Jun 24, 2008 @ 13:19:32

    Poor Heidi… and poor mama!
    You are both amazing!

    Reply

  3. Annette
    Jun 25, 2008 @ 14:03:28

    I must admit I started shedding a few tears as I read this. What a strong girl Heidi is. What a strong Mama you are. It is hard (and exhausting) to remain strong for our children, especially when we are in need of comfort ourselves.

    Reply

  4. Dennis Kuhns (Dad)
    Jun 28, 2008 @ 18:19:44

    I can remember a few times when for you and Jenn, I had tears while we wanted for the doctor to at the hosptial. You did great! I’m glad Heidi is okay now.

    Reply

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