July 15, 2010

Stitches and kids (Warning, picture included)

Nearly 3 weeks ago, Joe, my middle, did this to his leg:

Ten stitches in the front of his shin, just shy of the bone area. How pray tell you ask, did he do that?

Well it involves a bike, riding too fast, and a brick school building. Yes, Joe was riding the bike too fast, when a family with small kids was coming around the corner to the back of the school where he was. In order to avoid them he turned the bike. The bike's back tire slid off the pavement sidewalk, hit soft sand, and Joe went shin first into the corner of the brick school building.

It is comical now, but it wasn't when I got the phone call. We live a mere 5 minutes from the neighborhood elementary school. My kiddos go there nearly every day to stretch their legs, since we have almost no yard at our apartment. And with school out, the place is almost always deserted. Thankfully that family was there, and thankfully, I send my cell phone with the kids when they go up there. A dad called me and said that Joe had been hurt. Off I went to check it out and determine if he needed stitches.

The funny thing......or another funny thing, I should say......I have dubbed Joe "Mr. McGyver". He carries everything in his pockets. String, random papers, bits and bobbles. I get to the school and there sits Joe, with a napkin over the cut, and tied with a piece of jute string.

So, off we go to the emergency room, and ten stitches later, we get back home. We were very fortunate that the ER wasn't that busy for a weekend day. A few days later, we had to take some drastic measures so that he could take a shower. As you can see from the photo above, my son was endowed with his father's hairy legs lol. In order to keep the stitches dry, as instructed by the doctor, we had to cover the cut with a plastic bag while he took a shower. Can you see where this is going?

I dutifully went to the bathroom and got the razor. A few minutes later, Joe's leg was graced with a bare ring just a few inches below his knee, and another a few inches above his ankle. We slipped the plastic bag over his leg, and with the bare spots revealed, we could easily tape the bag in place, and then remove it after his shower without causing more pain than was necessary.

Two weeks later we were back at the emergency room to have the stitches removed. Unfortunately, the stitches had gotten healed into the scab that had formed. I think the stitches being removed were more painful than getting them, but Joe has a unique way of dealing with pain.....he laughs. Not sure where this comes from.

Fast forward to today, nearly 2 weeks after getting the stitches out......Joe went up the school with his sister and her boyfriend before dinner. About 45 minutes later he comes in the kitchen and says "Mom, please don't be mad at me". I just looked at him. He said it again, and I told him to tell me what happened. I thought something seriously bad happened while they were at the school (like they broke a window or something, although I know they wouldn't do anything like that on purpose).

Joe then proceeds to tell me he fell off the jungle gym at the school and his leg broke open again. Wonderful! He sits down and pulls up his pant leg....Mr. McGyver has been at it again......this time his leg is wrapped in his sock (he took it off his foot, since it was too hot to wear the hoodie that holds his normal "stash" of stuff), and some variegated yarn I had given him over a year ago. The sock looks pretty red, so I am expecting the worst when I take it off (after cutting ALL the knots he put in the yarn). It wasn't nearly as bad as I thought. It did open a bit, maybe 2 inches worth of it. Not too bad since the original cut was about 6 or so inches long.

My LNA training kicks in, and I clean it up, and using medical tape I start to make steri-strips to pull it back together. But the minute I touch it is starts running a clear fluid. So, pull out the gauze and make a regular bandage to cover it with. An hour later I ask him how it is doing......"The bandage is soaked, but it doesn't hurt". Great, so I take a look at it, sure enough it is soaked, and it looks like the more he is walking around, the more it is opening up. This was a pretty deep wound to begin with, about an inch deep at the time of the original injury.

Ok, lets get our shoes on and head to the ER again.....and fortunately again for us, it was a fairly fast process to get in and out. They have definitely improved how they do things from a few years ago. We had a great doctor, with a fabulous sense of humor. He recommended bubble wrap, which is a familiar comment in my life, as I am an accident prone klutz myself.

We are finally home, 3 more stitches later, and another appointment to have stitches out in two weeks. I count my blessings, because despite all my children being klutzes like me, and Joe being the daredevil that he is (he has been climbing since he could stand), we have had very few incidents like these. Joe is the only one who has ever had stitches. This is his second time, the first being when he got a swing in the face when he was 5.

Moms: Nurses in disguise lol.



  1. Raising Boys, you can only truly know the unique blessing of these everyday no big deal accidents. :)

  2. Hehe too true Sara! Although I have to say I have made as many trips to the ER with my daughter, just no stitches yet LOL. When she was younger she was just as outgoing and daring as Joe is. Thanks for stopping by my blog:)

  3. LOL! He sounds like my son James, I think he broke or hurt himself at least monthly!

  4. What a saga! And you wrote it all out so well. When your son is married and has children of his own what fun it will be for him (and his kids!) to read this and remember it all.

    We have to let our kids fly free but we never know what crazy things will happen to them. (It's hard on moms!)

  5. LOL Andi...sounds like they are very much alike:)

    Mama Pea: Thank you:) It's funny you bring up the "when he is married and has kids of his own" comment, he has been thinking the same thing. I think he is realizing that being a parent isn't going to be an easy job lol.

    Amen to letting them fly free, I wouldn't hold back his adventurous side for a minute!

  6. Their is never a dull moment with boys. I am glad he is okay. Praying for a fast healing.

  7. Thanks Shawnee:) He is healing well, if he would stop banging the leg, it would heal even better LOL! We go a week from today to get the second set of stitches out.