I was abot to call Alan after getting off the subway at the 57th Street station of the W train when I noticed I had a missed call from home. I dialed the house thinking the Lolas just needed me to get something for them at the grocery or drug store. Mom’s voice was obviously worried and she had every reason to be because Angel had tripped and hit his head on our low coffee table. (The Coffee table has been banished to the attic until we have guests..)
This time, the booboo was in the middle of his forehead. Although it wasn’t as bad a bleeder as the first cut two weeks ago, this was “smiling” wide and obviously needed stitches. (Again..) So I changed him, grabbed his diaper bag, and we drove to the same ER we went to the first time. (It’s the nearest, and why go elsewhere when we’re happy with them and they already have all our information.)
At the back of my mind I was kind of worried knowing how vigilant the hospital authorities are here about child welfare. While the first and this incident were totally unrelated and were but natural for growing boys like Angel, I was keeping my fingers crossed that this did not raise any red flags. Thinking about it, though, made me expect it which was good in a sense, because when additional personnel started examining Angel, I didn’t get nervous or panicked.
We immediately requested for the plastic surgeon as per our pediatrician’s advice. Any wounds to the face, hand and leg should be handled by a plastic surgeon. It was the same plastic surgeon who treated him the first time, but as he was just “on call” and not actually “on premises” like before, we had to wait until he arrived which wasn’t really very long.
While waiting, the child psychologist came down with two toys and started playing with Angel. I knew she didn’t just stroll into the ER looking for children to entertain with her toys. I talked with her in as normal a way as possible and tried make Angel at ease with her.
The plastic surgeon came and together (Alan held him by the head, I put my weight on his torso, and eventually the child psychologiest held his legs), we struggled through getting the wound stitched up. Angel was so strong that he could push me just by pushing his body up through his legs pushing against the hospital bed.
Even with the local anesthetic, he was very distraught because he started crying the moment he saw the plastic surgeon. After he had been cleaned and a waterproof bandage applied to the wound, another doctor came in to examine in “to make sure he was okay and nothing was wrong with his head.”
The plastic surgeon assured me that accident like this were normal, and that he had boys come in with their incisions re-opening two to three times — I told him I was worried something might need to be checked considering he seemed to be falling all over the place. He said no and assured me even his sons had gone through the same thing. The other doctor was not accusatory and acted nonchallantly. She went through the motions of checking Angel’s breathing, his ears and his eyes, then went on to look behind his back and his tush (in search of telltale signs of abuse, I suppose..). I was telling myself they can look all they want because I had nothing to hide.
Finally they gave us a clean bill of health — and the other doctor was surprised to see that the plastic surgeon had actually signed the release already. And off we went, with Angel walking by himself, only too happy to be walking to the car and heading home. It was almost 10PM already and neither Alan nor I had had dinner yet. Angel had just finished eating when we arrived so he was good. Although we had planned to have dinner at a nearby restaurant we frequent, Alan suggested we just go home because we knew the grandmas were worried and waiting. And there they were.
This weekend we are doing another round of childproofing. You can never be too careful more so when the child is as precocious as Angel. Meanwhile, he’s good as new.. and I whispered to him he can’t afford another trip to the ER soon, because then we might get in real trouble, even if nothing really happened beyond an accident taking place.