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Broken Bones About It

I had just arrived home when we got the call. Harper's teacher was letting us know that she had fallen off the monkey bars at the playground and was complaining that her arm hurt and we might want to come check it out. Jennifer was home, as well, so we piled in the car and headed to the school. The teacher met us at the door saying they were pretty sure something was wrong as she had woken up twice crying, holding her arm.

It was 1:15 p.m. and I made a call to the pediatrician's office, which was closed until 1:30, so we decided to just head there. I could tell from the small protrusion on the inside of her arm that it was broken, but we needed and xray to be sure. I mean, with this look? Hello, it's broken.


The doctor confirmed it was likely broken, but then mentioned things we hadn't considered. Things like "growth plate" and "setting with anesthesia" and "pins".


So he sent us on to Texas Children's Hospital. By then, it was nearing 2:30pm, Harper wouldn't let anyone but me carry her. Have I mentioned how hot and humid it is in Houston, Texas?

Thankfully, the pediatrician had given her something for the pain, so after being triaged, they put her in a sling and she was coloring in the emergency room waiting room like a champ.


Here came the tricky part and the conversation with the nurse went a little like this:

"Hi, listen, I know y'all are busy, and we all know that her arm is broken, it's just a matter of to what extent. And I was just wondering, if there was any way you could see to us quickly because her other mother and I are supposed to leave for the airport in three...HOURS. Overseas. And it would be so great if we could know if she's going to have to have surgery or just a cast, you know, before we get on a flight we can't cancel."

Something like that.

And here's how it played out: the nurse, the radiology department, and the pediatric orthopedic down right RALLIED and got us through the maze and into the cast room like THAT.


She chose hot pink, of course.

We got out of there with thirty minutes to go. Thirty minutes to get her to our friends' home where Mateo and Harper would stay the first two nights, before moving onto another friends' home the second two nights, before heading to our own home where my mom and sister would come in for the weekend.

As you can see, she's adjusted just fine.


In fact, her teachers told us upon our return that they are having to watch her on the playground. Why? I asked. Is it because other kids are being too rough? No, she said, because she continues to try to get up on the monkey bars. One handed.

Reader Comments (1)

Harper's young enough that this might not be an issue, but when I had a green version of that cast, I was asked by dozens of people what the other choices were for colors. It was beyond reason the number of times it came up. Every day for six weeks I had to recite a list of colors. I started getting grouchy about it, which was arguably unfair to people making a fairly benign inquiry.

04.26.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeff

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