Finding Diana

An everyday woman's guide to figuring out what the hell happened to her life



Welcome to my world.  I am trying to figure out what became of me and I want to share this agonizing journey with the general public.

Please feel free to comment, but not to judge.  Ok, well we will all be judging, but just don't let me know about it.

A close call

What a terrifying experience I  had yesterday.  I was sitting in my office, attempting to bill Medicaid, which is very similar to Alice in Wonderland's tea party, but not as satisfying when the phone rings.  "This is the school nurse".  "Which school?  I have kids at three schools".  Ok I figure out it is my older son's school (because the nurse told me so) and she says "I'm concerned about Joe".  And I though, "Yeah, me too - who isnt?"  In my head I'm thinking that it must be some sort of stomach ache that shouldn't necessitate me picking him up.

No, that wasn't it.  She said that he was playing pick up football with friends at recess and he was tackled and hit his head.  At first it didn't register with me that it was serious.  I was still thinking that maybe he had a cut or scrape.  Instead she said that he may have lost consciousness and had an altered mental status.  He kept repeating the same phrases and wasn't responding to her questions.  She wanted to know if she should call an ambulance or if I wanted to come get him.  As soon as she uttered those words I transformed into Major Adrenaline Mama (MAM).  I shut down my computer and grabbed my stuff while she was still talking and told her I would come get him because I thought he might be too scared to go alone in an ambulance.

I ran into my boss' office and told her that I was leaving and I ran out the building into my car.  I recalled my Boston driving skills and sped out of the parking lot.  Not being able to go too crazy because I work in a downtown area full of pedestrians, I went those few blocks to the highway calmly, but aggressively.  Then I was like a bat out of hell.  Driving over 80, I weaved my way to the exit in record time.  While doing this I was calling my husband and texting him the number to the school nurse. Once off the exit, I figured that if right on red was for regular times, then left on red should be for emergencies.  As I entered the parking lot, I threw my car into a space,  and bolted for the door.  

Once there I went straight to the nurses office and saw my son sitting there staring off into space.  He knew his name and who I was, but he couldn't remember most of the day and kept repeating the same five questions over and over.  I felt a cold wash of dread go through my body and a knot in my stomach.  I calmly put him in the car and repeated my creative Bostonian driving to the Children's Hospital.  I handed the keys to a valet(thats how you know it's serious) and accidently left my phone in the car.  I took him in and was frustratingly told to fill out paperwork before they would see him.

After waiting 30 minutes, which I realize isn't bad in an ER, but still every time they called someone else I had to restrain myself from asking the nurse if that child was so sick that he/she took precedence over a head injury.  Finally, the triage nurse took us back and at that moment my husband walked in.  They interviewed Joe, who could tell them what day it was and who the president is, so they told us to wait in the lobby for 2 hours and then come back for reassessment.  During those 2 hours, my husband played with Joe on the iphone and joked around with him. I couldn't even speak.  Imagine that?  I was so upset, I couldn't say a word.

We went back after 2 hours and they put us in a room.  A nurse came in and hooked Joe up on a heart monitor, blood pressure monitor and pulse Oxygen monitor.  Then a resident came in and assessed him.  Finally, the attending came in and ordered a CT scan.  Joe was in good spirits and seemed to be coming back to his self.  Still, he seemed kind of out of it.  Eventually, three hours later, the doctor came back and said that his CT scan was negative.  I left to go home to the other kids and to relieve my babysitter.  It was almost 9:00.  Meanwhile, I had to call back his teacher and let her know what happened and what to tell the other kids, who had all been calling to see how he was.

Finally, Joe and my husband got home after a stop at Subway because Joe hadn't eaten in ten hours and usually he eats massive quantities of food every couple of hours.  

Once I was in bed, I began to think about what could have happened and how horrible it must be for other parents.  We were fortunate that Joe was OK, but it made me think of this BU hockey player who was injured when I was there.  He had dreamed of playing college hockey his whole life.  His first time out on the ice at BU, he was hit within the first five minutes and his spinal cord was damaged.  He became a quadrapalegic.  Imagine how his parents felt!  Imagine how horrible he must have felt.  For many years, they dedicated games in his honor and he would come in his wheelchair.  I wonder if they still do that, or if he is forgotten.  I wonder if he was able to make a life for himself.

Well, I told Joe that his football days are over.  He is upset he has to sit out two weeks of basketball, but that's a very small price to pay.  I will never let him play football or ice hockey.   I'm way too paranoid.  Besides, basketball is easier - no bulky equipment or early ice times to deal with.

Anyway, I am still shaken and look forward to a large glass of wine and facinating TV to quell my nerves.  

1 comment | Add a New Comment
1. Marina | November 12, 2010 at 04:47 PM EST

Wow, what an ordeal. I\'m glad Joe is okay and am amazed by your ability to be funny while retelling this experience.

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