I accidentally shut Eleanor's right ring finger in a bedroom door when I pulled it shut extra hard to try and get it to latch closed. Screaming. Crying. Blood. More crying (from me this time). Phone call to our doctor friend from community group who told us to take her to the ER. Many hours and several hundred dollars later we were home. The finger nail is pretty well detached (from the bottom of the nail bed, which makes it look extra gnarly). They were going to remove it so it could heal, but x-rays showed a tuft fracture (meaning the very tip of her finger is broken), so they left the nail to help protect the fracture. It's considered an open fracture, so she's on antibiotics four times a day for a million years (well, 10 days, anyway). They were able to splint the finger (which I was skeptical of, thinking she would surely pick off anything they put on it). They gave her a dose of pain medication and sent us home with a rx for more. I'm supposed to make a follow up appointment with an orthopedic surgeon, but the ER doc was pretty confident that it would just require some time and heal on its own. He said that if she's acting okay, not complaining much, and it's not swelling more over the weekend then I can just cancel that appointment and do the splint for a couple weeks and it will be fine. Also, the nail is definitely going to fall off and will have to grow back. Of all things, I'm not just worried about the pain that I caused her, but that her finger nail will be permanently funky and she will blame me forever.
Side note: I'm pretty sure the doc was afraid of me. When he was explaining the fracture and details to us, I started crying. He asked if this was our first child and... well, how does this panicky mother in the Emergency Room answer such a question? Honestly. So, yeah, the doctor was trying extra hard to be nice to the crazy crying momma who has already lost two kids and was feeling like accidentally breaking her toddler's finger in a door was a sure sign of the end of the world. One billion Daddy & Husband bonus points to Drew for being the calm & rational voice of reason and encouragement all night long. He's even working today on just a few hours of sleep and the same emotional PTSD feelings that I'm having over the ordeal. I'm not even joking. Think PTSD is only for soldiers and crime victims? It isn't. We've experience some pretty traumatic stress over the years with Alex & Emma and things like this trigger weird feelings for us both. Want to know something really weird? I was sitting in the patient room, holding Eleanor tight, and I kissed her head. It only took a few seconds for me to have this really strange flood of emotion and then realize that her head smelled exactly like Alex & Emma. I said it out loud and Drew said, "I did the exact some thing a few minutes ago, but didn't want to say it." Hasn't it been proven that sweating for different reasons releases different scents? I haven't smelled that smell in years, but I knew it as soon as it hit my nose. It's the smell of pain. She had been crying in pain and with that she was sweating. Alex & Emma did the same thing their entire lives. When their flare ups were extra bad, they would literally sweat. I didn't know that it was purely from pain, but I believe now that it was. It smells different than a kid who has been playing outside and working up a sweat. It was completely unexpected and strangely emotional to just to inhale when I kissed her head. So, yeah, Drew & I both have something of an emotional hangover today. All those weird emotions aside, Eleanor is okay and a broken finger is, in fact, not the end of the world. This was an isolated incident and she's still our happy, sassy, healthy baby.
Today has gone pretty well so far. She's fine with the splint and we're just calling it her pretty new ring. She frequently stops to point it out and announce "Owie! Owie! Owie!" Drew filled her pain prescription this morning so we could stay on top of it for a day. She's been pretty good and is laying down for a nap now. I'm about to do the same. I still feel 100% terrible and guilty because it's all my fault. I didn't do it on purpose and accidents do happen, but it still sucks.
I'll spare you the picture of the initial injury. If you're a glutton for gory images of bloody baby fingers then I'll show you later (weirdos). I did, however, take a few photos at the ER and asked Drew to do the same, because this is part of life, too.
Watching Elmo on Hulu on the phone in the waiting room, because two hour waits to be seen are long and ER waiting rooms are always a little ick and scary, no matter what hospital you're at. Also, because if we kept her still and pressure on her hand then she didn't cry as much and it didn't bleed as much.
The break. See the very tip?