Sadie went to the emergency room yesterday afternoon. She gashed her forehead open after an ill-fated bounce on the couch in our family room led to a bloody encounter with the edge of our coffee table. Here is the conversation we had not two minutes before the accident:
Mom: Sadie, stop jumping on the couch.
Sadie: I want to fly!
Mom: You cannot fly, and couches are for sitting. Sit down on your tush!
Sadie: I need to bounce so I can fly.
Mom: No flying! Sit on the couch
Sadie (sitting on her tush and frowning): I want to fly.
Then, Jason called me into the bathroom to see his progress on painting the walls, and we both heard a loud, "BAM!" not thirty seconds after I left the room. We rushed into the hallway to see Sadie in that silent cry mode (you parents know how gut-wrenching that non-sound is). She caught her breath and started saying, "I'm so sorry! I'm so sorry!" I picked her up and sat on the couch to examine her. That's when I saw the blood start flowing down in sickening streams.
"Oh! Jesus!" I gasped, in a prayer of desperation. Jason and I rushed her up the stairs, into the bathroom, where we could apply some pressure and look more closely. The gaping wound on her forehead, right at her hairline, gave me a ghastly smile.
"We have to get her to the emergency room!" I rasped. Jason was halfway to the car before I finished the sentence. I yelled for him to grab my shoes and purse, while I hastily threw some ice cubes in a kitchen towel. Sadie was sobbing quietly.
I sat in the back seat, keeping pressure on her cut with the ice pack, while Sadie complained bitterly through the whole journey.
"This is too cold!"
"I don't want to go to the hospital!"
"I wanted to fly like a bird!"
"This is too cold!"
"I hate this!"
On and on and on. I was so grateful that she hadn't lasped into unconsciousness. The entire trip, while she listed her grievances, I prayed those short, silent, naked prayers that flood a mother's mind and soul when her intestines are twisted into a knot and her breath catches in her throat. Please, holy Lord, protect my baby. Please, oh Jesus, make it not too bad.
Thank God for American medicine. And thank God for Valley Medical Center. The triage nurse was wonderful. She immediately brought us comfort, while she spoke in reassuring tones and wrapped a gauze bandage about Sadie's head. Sadie remained alert and talkative. Her daddy admired her new injured-Civil-War-veteran look, and I commented that she looked rather like a flapper. Sadie's spirits returned, as buoyant as ever. She chattered away, commenting on the human scene around her. Nothing is more delightful than to see your child acting normally, especially after a head wound.
She ended up getting four stitches. The doctors think that her cut won't scar too much. She was a brave little soldier during the stitching. Sadie-like, she kept the doctors talking and laughing throughout the procedure, and I just stood there watching it all, so filled with gratitude at another full measure of grace from the Lord. After we were cleared to go, the doctor turned to us and said, "How did you get that little girl to be so smart and sweet? You must be doing something right." I could have replied easily and assuredly with the answer that Sadie always gives about the reasons she is smart or pretty or sweet (or talkative): Because the Lord made her that way. I just smiled gratefully and thanked him profusely.
Once in the car, Sadie immediately demanded the chocolate bar she had been promised. She ate heartily last night, and has continued acting in her normal monkeyshines ways today. She still is disappointed that she cannot fly like a birdie, but she's promised only to use couches for sitting in the future. My little monkey. Lord, I am so grateful.