A Life Askew

Bumbling Through One Day At A Time

Lucky Break

Today I was in a waiting room talking with a lady, whom I know from church but hadn’t ever really spoken with before, and during the course of the conversation kids came up.  Which is surprising, because who talks about kids, I mean really?
After talking about how awesome they are, to how less than awesome they can be and back to them being awesome again, I mentioned my girl had broken her leg when she was little.  That was three years ago, in July.  July 19th or 20th, or not.  Or 12th.  Oh hell, maybe it was June!  I don’t remember for sure.  I’m bad with dates, don’t judge me.  She’s lucky I know her birthday.  Lucky for her it’s a week after mine, and I like my birthday, so it helps me remember hers.

So, in July, just 2 months before her second birthday, she breaks her leg.  It was a gnarly break, too.  I had been out doing laundry at my mom’s because the apartment laundry room was gross, and when I came in she was on the couch watching a movie and jumped up and started to run to me.  Yelling, “Momma!!!  Momma!! Yer home!!!  Yer home!!!”  And proceeded to run right off the end of the couch.  The stupid couch had this one long cushion that wouldn’t stay put and always slid down and it was hanging over the edge a good ways when she ran off it.  Well, it gave and she went down and when she hit the floor it twisted her poor little right leg out and it broke.  Spiral fracture in her femur.  Which, apparently, because some seriously thick-headed-jerk-faces kept mentioning it, is the most painful bone in the body to break.

DO NOT tell anyone that if they have a child that is currently suffering from a femur break.  Just don’t do it.

At that moment I didn’t know what was wrong, just that the happiest, least likely to cry, baby was screaming bloody murder and it was worse if I put her on her feet.  Inside of 30 seconds I decided a trip to the ER was required and off we went.  She calmed down a little on the way, but the second I moved her, the screaming recommenced.  They took some X-rays and through dumb luck caught the tail end of the break on one of them.  We thought her knee was hurt, not her thigh, so we weren’t looking in the right place.  They took some more X-rays and found one of the most horrid visions I’ve ever seen.  Ever.  She had a spiral fracture.  You could see the cracks wrap right around that little bone of hers.  If you’ve never seen one, it’s similar to a can of Pillsbury biscuits, when it pops open and you twist it.  Same, exact, idea.

Now, this, particular kind of fracture is very common in children abuse cases.  It happens when the bone is twisted.  Which is terribly and utterly sickening, if you ask me.  BUT, it’s also very common in toddlers’ legs.  While the hospital we went to took exceptional care of my daughter, it’s a small hospital.  In a small town.  They’d never seen this kind of break in a kid this age before and were automatically suspicious of abuse.  Understandable?  Yeah.  Even remotely helpful to me or my mental state?  Not even close.  So, they’re tossing around hints of me abusing my child.  My mom flat out asked of Chris did it.  Which is fair, but again, not helpful.  Right now.  Thanks.

This was in between muscle spasms in her leg.  The poor doctors were afraid to give her any pain killers because they'd never had a kid in pain like this before.

This was in between muscle spasms in her leg. The poor doctors were afraid to give her any pain killers because they’d never had a kid in pain like this before.

Suspicion of abuse wasn’t the only side effect of the break being new to them all, there wasn’t an orthopedic doctor in the area that felt even remotely comfortable setting her leg or putting a cast on her.  And we have some REALLY good orthopedic doctors here.  But she was just too small and they were just too nervous about it.  So they set us up to be taken to The Children’s Hospital in Denver (where they were fantastic, but I’ll get to that in a few…).
There were two options to get us to Denver.  Either ambulance or aircraft.  They were reluctant to take us by road because of the bumps jarring her already hurt leg.  So they called in a helicopter to take us.

This was the only thing we could distract her with.  I think she was calling for a taxi, or pizza.  Or both.

This was the only thing we could distract her with. I think she was calling for a taxi, or pizza. Or both.

While they were getting a helicopter ready to fly us to Denver, there was a very bad car accident and a woman was severely injured.  As it happened, the helicopter was ready just when she arrived at the hospital and they decided to use it to take her to a better trauma center in another city.  And while it’s not like they asked my permission or anything, they did mention it to me.  Maybe to help me feel like I had a choice.  Regardless, I was fine with it, my daughter was stable, if in pain, but the woman needed it more than we did at the time.
While we were waiting for another flight I was going crazy.  My mom works at the hospital, so I’d called her to come in.  (She fixes their computers, so I was hoping with her around they’d make sure they were on top of their game with her grand daughter.  You know, keep the computer lady happy.)  And while I’d been keeping it together so the kiddo wouldn’t get freaked out because I was freaking out, my mom is over there crying and freaking out.

Not helping.  Geez, lady, keep it together…

So, to both take a break and give myself a chance to react; and to get a moment to pull myself together, I left my mom with my girl and went outside to smoke a cigarette. By now, we’ve been in the ER for 3 hours, or so, and I was starting to get mad about someone else taking our flight. My kid was hurting, there was nothing I could do to fix it.  I was emotionally exhausted, mad I couldn’t fix my little girl’s hurt, angry they would even suggest I’d done it, mad my mom would suggest Chris had, just in general struggling with the whole shebang.  I was the kind of mad you get when someone you love is hurting and there isn’t a thing you can do about it.  I might have kicked my truck.  A couple times.
I was shaking and just about undone when a man approached me in the parking lot and asked why I was there. I told him about my girl and that we were just waiting for a flight, that we’d had one but it had gone to someone else. And right there he began to cry.
He started thanking me through his tears. It was his wife that had been hurt.  Their, grown, children were standing off a ways talking and watching us.  He just stood there and cried for a minute.  He took a second to get himself together and he thanked me again, and apologized for crying.  He told me that without the flight his wife probably wouldn’t have made it.  He said how sorry he was that my poor child was hurting so much, but that it was his blessing, an answer to his prayers.
And then I cried (I may or may not be tearing up writing this…).  I felt ashamed at my impatience.  And so thankful that we could play a part in saving that woman’s life. And humbled.  And so filled with God’s grace and love.  And it helped give me the strength to hold my daughter’s hand through her pain.
I thanked him for telling me that.  And forgave him his tears (what kind of monster would I be to hold them against him?  Hmm?)  And thanked him some more and prayed for his wife and thanked him again for giving me perspective (that I seriously needed just then).  I told him I was so thankful that they took our flight.  And that, yes, it was terrible my child was hurting, but a gift to us to be able to help that way.  And we prayed for each other.  And thanked each other a couple more times.  And he went on his way.

As a side note, that is the only conversation I’ve ever had like that.  It happened so fast.  And I don’t think I’ve ever sat and thought about it like this until now.  And now my memories are just that, memories.  Which means they’re a little (a lot) foggy.  So, maybe it didn’t go down exactly like that, but that’s how I remember it.  And that’s definitely the sentiment of it all.
Also, the woman made it through, in no small part because of the flight.  For such a horrific moment in my daughter’s small life, it had an enormous and beautiful impact on that family and I’ll be forever thankful for that.  I wish I deserved more credit for it, but I don’t.  I’ll have to settle for the gift of knowing we had our part.

Some time later, they finally had a flight lined up for us.  We flew on a little plane (that was really awesome because I like planes but I don’t remember much of because there were more important things going on.  And they didn’t let me sit with her because I was still suspect for the injury).  Tess did wonderfully.  She was still having the spasms every few minutes, but she’s such a little trooper.  A spasm would hit and she’d cry for a second, then stop, then bet her eyes and say, “Hiiiiiiiiiiii.” to the EMT sitting with her.  And while he wasn’t bad looking, c’mon kid, time and place!

The flight was pretty quick and soon we landed and got on an ambulance to take us to the hospital.  The staff at The Children’s Hospital were A maze ing.  They asked a couple questions, took a look at us and assured me this was a common break in toddlers and that helped sooth us both.  It was pretty late at night and we had to wait for the doctor that came in on the morning shift.  So she was able to get a little bit of sleep, and I wasn’t.  The only complaint I have about that hospital is their plastic chairs in the rooms are impossible to sleep in.  So, after trying desperately to doze a little bit here and there, the doctor finally made it in.  They put her in a SPICA cast.  Basically, it’s a body cast/baby torture device.

Full body baby torture, but it comes in purple!

Full body baby torture, but it comes in purple!

As you can see, it’s quite a contraption.  And totally, horribly, vilely disgusting after 8 weeks.  I won’t get into that.  Trust me though, totally gross.  And ginormous.  We had to borrow a car seat that is made specifically for the cast to be able to leave with her.  It was all just nuts.  And for those of you that are wondering, and I KNOW some of you are wondering, under that diaper is a big hole they left.  For diapers I had to get newborn ones and shove them in the hole and then the big one around the outside to hold it all in.  It’s not a perfect system.  Again, I won’t go into detail.  But it’s about the only option when your’e strapped into a monster thing like that.  They comforted me by telling me that at least she’s young enough for diapers.  I guess it’s more more horrific on children that are older and more accustomed to using the toilet.  I don’t even want to imagine….

Once the cast was on everything sped up to light speed and they gave us some good pain killers for her and sent us on our way.  Chris had left earlier to try and be there when we were ready to go, and my step-mom had left work to do the same.  I was finally able to take a deep breath after all night of holding it in.  I was afraid of breathing too deep all night because I knew the torrent of my emotions would be released with little to no instigation.  And I was trying very hard to keep it all in check.  Chris took the kiddo to my dad’s house to rest and stop being on the move for awhile.  And I went with my step-mom to go pick up some things that were now necessary for caring for my kid.  Bless that woman for putting up with me some days, but when Chris drove off with Tess, all that pressure was released and I was totally nutzo for a little while.  It was like I had jelly between my ears.  More than normal.  No, not more jelly, just more of the feeling.  Damnit.  I’m just not thinking of a better way to describe that right now.  Anyhow, by the time we got back to the house and Tess, I was ready to deal with the situation again, and, at least slightly, more sane.

happy kiddoAs you can see, she dealt with the whole thing with a lot more decorum than I did.  And now she’s fully recovered and just fine despite the whole mess.

And now, I think I’ve got this story out of my system.  It had been stuck in my head all day.  I think it was just time to get it out.  Maybe I needed the reminder that even our darkest hours can be a blessing in disguise.  It’s an easy thing to forget.  I guess today was just a day to reflect on how lucky I am, to have such an awesome little girl, and to have been at the right place and the right time, again (that happens a lot to me, I’m just lucky that way I guess).

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Why My Dog is My Favorite Kid

By now, if you’re following this nonsensical blog, you know that I have an ornery little girl.

We recently added a large dog to the family.

IMG_1232

Goobers, our puppy.

I love my family.  They are all wonderful, from the kid, to the dog, to the Lorax.  But sometimes, well, sometimes my dog is my favorite of the bunch.

He is just so nice!  He loves me!  He never talks back.  He cuddles when I want to cuddle.  He doesn’t leave socks on the floor.

And because I think that everything needs a list of examples, here are a few specific reasons why my dog is my favorite kid.

Kid: I don’t want to eat that!  It’s yucky!    Dog: FOOD!!!!

Kid: No! I don’t want to!   Dog: Woof! *Tail Wags*

Kid: That’s not fair!   Dog: Woof! *Tail Wags*

Kid: But I waaaaaaant it!!!!   Dog: *Puppy Dog Eyes*

To kid: Sit down! Kid: *Wiggle Wiggle*   To dog: Sit!  Dog: *Sits*

Kid: But this isn’t the kind of candy I wanted!   Dog: A treat! Yay! *Tail Wags*

Kid bedtime: Jack-in-the-box up and down, screaming, crying.   Dog bedtime: My feet are warm.

Kid: You’re not my friend anymore!!!   Dog: I’ll always be your friend.

Of course, in the end, they’re both pretty awesome.

Kid: I love you!    Dog: I love you! *Tail Wags*

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Ten Turtles Humping

I know it’s been some time since I actually posted anything on here.  I think about it sometimes, but so rarely are there moments in my life that I think anyone who doesn’t actually like me would even bother to sit through a full telling of them, that I just, well, don’t.  But that, I suppose, is obvious.  And while I know that my rare posts are pure gold that the masses yearn to experience, just know that if I don’t really want to write, you guys would suffer.  And I can’t be letting you all down.

That said, it being the Holidays and tomorrow Christmas Eve, I thought this little gem of a story would be perfectly fitting.  And tellable.  Maybe even awe inspiring.

Over this last weekend, my boyfriend, daughter and I went to my father’s house to spend the weekend with that part of the family and do an early Christmas with them.  And that was wonderful.  It was also normal family stuff that no one else really wants to hear about.  My literary opportunity came 4 hours into our ride home.  In a single cab truck.  After stuffing our faces with Krispy Kremes and Jack in the Box (and a morning of Mimosas for me…).

It was starting to get dark, I was starting to get tired, and the kiddo, she was starting to wake up.  Of course.  The Lorax was getting a little loopy too, so it wasn’t just me.  Out of the blue, while following a snow plow (with flashy, glowy blue and yellow lights) I hear quietly from the other side of the truck, “Blue. Yellow. Blue. Yellow. Blue.. Yellow..”  So on and so forth. It went on for a second before I realized it was him, in a weird, growly voice, chanting along with the flashing of the lights on the truck.  You know how you always wish you could get into someone’s head?  You really don’t want to.  That’s the kind of thing you find and it just changes your whole perspective of them..  Or ruins your train of thought when following snow plows for the foreseeable future….

ANYwho…  So we chant for a few minutes, getting the kiddo all worked up and giggling, and again, out of no where, I get this unstoppable urge to sing The Twelve Days of Christmas.  Now, I’m a Christmas song nut.  I mean, when I’m alone in the car in July, I turn off the radio and sing them at the top of my lungs because I just like the damn things.  They’re catchy.  What I didn’t realize until, well, let me recount how the song went for you all.  It’s an instant classic.  I think I’m going to go caroling tomorrow so I can share this with all the neighbors.

Oooonnnnn the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me!!!!!!!!
A partridge in a pear treeeeeeee!!!!!
(While the text doesn’t give it due justice, I’ll try to exaggerate the words so you too can feel their passion.)

Onn the second daay of Christmas my true love gaaave to meee!!
Two turtle doves!!!!!
Aaaand a paartridge in a pear treeeee!!!!

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to mee!!
Threeeeee…. french hens!
Two turtle doves
Aaand a partridge in a pear tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to mee!
Four tur.. TURTLE doves!!
Three french hens!!
Two!!
And a partridge in a pear tree…

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me!
FIVE GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLD RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINGS!!!! (If you’ve seen Eddie Izzard, he’d be proud…)
Four french.. hens..
Three…!!
Two…
And a partridge in a pear treeee!!

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to mee!!
Six!!  Six… maids a milking…
FIVE GOOOOOOOOOOLD RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINGS!!!!!!
Four turtle hens
Three french pigs
Two!
And a partridge in a pear TREEEEEE!!!!!

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me!!!
Seven swans a stinking
Six maids a milking
FIIIVE GOOOOLD RIIINGS!!!|
Four turtles humping
Three bunnies running
Two french hens
And a partridge in a pear treeee!

On the seventh.. EIGHTH!! day of Christmas my true love gave to me!!!
Eight…  eight ladies leaping
Seven swans a swimming
Six maids a maiding
FIIIVE GOOOOOLD RIIINGS!!!
Four mocking goons
Three french whores
Two turtle rabbits
And a partridge in a pear tree!!!!

On the ninth day of Christmas my true love gaaave to meee!!!
Nine lords a skipping
Eight ladies weeping
Seven swims a swanning
Six maids a milking
FIIIIIVE GOOOOOLD RIIIINGS!!!!!
Four french breads
Three bunnies running
Two…….
And a partridge in a pear tree!!!

On the 11th (“You’re on the tenth!!”  “Oh!  damn!”) On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me!!!
Ten things I don’t need
Nine ladies dancing….
Eight…. lords.. in.. clothing!
Seven swans a swimming
Six maids a milking!! *Fist pumps in air for correctness*
FIIIIVE GOOOLD RIIIIIIIIIIIINGS!!!!!
Four bunnies dancing
Three french hens!!
Two turtle doves..
And a partridge in a pear treeee!!

(“Wait, what am I on again?” “Eleven!!”  “Thanks!”)

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me!!
Eleven lines I’m needing
Ten things I don’t need
Nine… Ladies dancing
Eight.. Lords.. a’leaping..
Seven swans.. swimming..
Six maids milking..?
FIIIVE GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLD RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINGS!!!!
Four turtle butts
Three rabbit furs
Two hench frens.. FRENCH HENS!!!
And a partridge in a pear treee!!!!!

On the 12th day of Christmas my truuuuuuuue love gaaaaaave to meeeee!!!!
Twelve songs I can’t sing
Eleven lines I’m needing
Ten things I don’t need
Nine ladies lording
Eight things with something
Seven swans a swimming
Six maids with stitching
FIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIVE GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLD RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINGS!!!!!!!!!
Four french hens!!!
Three rabbit dens!!
Two turtle doves..!!!
AAAAANND a paaaaartridge iiiiiiiin aaaaaaa pear TREEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!

As you can see, I may have forgotten a few of the words.  I know it’s not super noticeable.  You probably had to look them up to double check, but yeah, there are a few lines that are a little off.

However, I think this version has more, um, character.  I’m excited to try it out for my friends and family tomorrow, as I’m sure they would be if they had any idea what they were in for….

With that, you all have a fabulously Merry Christmas!!!!!  Safe holidays and may your presents all at least be in the realm of thoughtful!!!

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Things You Can Learn From A 3 Year Old

It’s 11pm and I can’t sleep.

This definitely has nothing to do with the scary book I just finished reading.  Nothing to do with it.

So, as I’m laying in bed, I start thinking (because what else would you do in bed? Sleep? Pssh.) and I realize that my child has taught me a few important life lessons.

I really am tired, just sleepless, so I’m gonna skip the segue and get right to the things I learned.

On a completely unrelated note, walking through a pitch dark entry way to let your dog out into the darkness, out side, is REALLY creepy right after finishing a scary book.

Okay, okay,

Lesson 1:  Don’t sweat the small stuff.

This my terrorist wonderful child has taught me two ways.  The first is learning which battles to pick with her.  Do I want to scream and yell when I see her face is covered in six different colors of marker?  Sure, but I have to save it for when she’s got the dog in a head lock.  The other way she showed me this is one day we were on the interstate driving to my dad’s house and the whole trip I had her pumping her arm up and down trying to get the semi’s to honk their horns.  More than 10 times and not one of them did it.  (Bastards.)  Coupled with interstate traffic and my volatile mild temper, I started getting irritated.  Finally another one didn’t honk and I *might* have yelled (though I’m sure I said it very calmly), “ARGH!!!  What a bastard!!”  To which my darling child says to me, “Momma?  It’s okay.”  And right there, I knew that I let too much get to me.

Lesson 2: Everyone poops, farts and has a butt. 

I grew up where girls didn’t fart or poop and if boys did it you ignored it.  Then I got pregnant and nothing is sacred.  Then I had a sweet little baby and I was a girl again.  THEN I moved in with a guy that taught my sweet little baby to say, “Your turn!” every time she farts.  But yeah, I’ve always been pretty private about any bodily functions, including not blowing my nose around other people.  So having to take my kid with me to the bathroom 90% of the time was a little awkward at first.  Especially public restrooms, where she yells, “Momma!!  You poop!!  Yay!!”  Isn’t potty training awesome?  Anyhow, so the other day we were watching her latest favorite show, The Dinosaur Train, and they were talking about going potty.  The entire point of the episode was that everyone does it so it’s nothing to be ashamed of.  I don’t think I’ve ever heard anything more brilliant, ever.  Now going potty is a normal thing that doesn’t freak me out so much when I have a regular audience.  (That sounds really gross.  I mean when I have to take my kid in there with me.  Heh.)

Lesson 3: Talking cutsie makes you sound stupid.

If you ask my daughter if her food is yummy, she will tell you, “No.  It’s food/dinner/sandwich.”  I knew talking like that around adults made you sound dumb, but when a 3 year old picks up on that too, you’ve gone too far. 😉

And that’s it for tonight folks.  I can’t think of anything else. 🙂  I, totally, thought this would be a lot longer when I sat down to write it.  So, maybe I’ll think of more things when I’m not so tired.  We shall see.

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My Kid IS Cute and Other Things

Well, it’s been awhile since I’ve been on here.  To be honest, that people were actually reading this is scary.  I feel like I have to be brilliant to keep writing and that is a hard standard to keep up with.

So, to start, I’m going to do the most annoying thing possible, advertise my child.  And from there, anything else should look great! 🙂

A few days ago I entered a photo of my daughter into a “Cutest Kids Contest” and have been campaigning for her cuteness since.  I figured, I have about 140 friends on my Facebook, all either family or friends and people that I actually know.  That said, I thought these people would automatically want to help out.  The contest started Sat the 5th at 2pm and, so far, we have 16 votes.  16!!!  That’s about 10% of what I was expecting.  So, now it’s turned into a matter of, “What kind of friends are these?!?”  And now it’s time to turn to other alternatives:

Click on the picture and it will take you to the page where you vote.  You have to have Facebook and it makes you agree to another app, but no reason you can’t vote and then delete the app.  The prize is a $500 photo package and the chance to be in their new ads for the year.  It’s not really important, but it would be something cool and special for her for when she’s older.

Anyhow, please help me out.  And I promise I’ll try to write more about more fun things!!!!!

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