Yesterday was spent in not one, but two Emergency Rooms. My son woke up screaming at one poi t in the nite and we dismissed it as anything out of the ordinary. He usually wakes up around 3am and this was right in schedule. Hours later, once we’re all up and getting the day going, my wife calls me into the kitchen to look at his foot. It’s at least twice its normal size and a strange shade of red with some alert of mark in the middle of it. He had been holding out it saying “ow foot” when she noticed it. We decided that I would take him it o the ER down the street to have it checked out while she finished getting our daughter fed and herself ready. She had a big interview lined up later in the morning.
Two hours later and we were still in the waiting room. We were next, then got bumped for an incoming ambulance, then finally we got a room. The doc came in and took a look at the now bright red giant foot. His eyes about popped out of his head. I immediately felt like the most awful, horribly neglectful parent in the ‘verse. I had no answers for them. When did it start? Just noticed it this morning. Did I notice him hurt it? Nope. All I could think of was that somehow he had managed to break it while in his crib or he was having some sort of reaction to something biting him. We had been doing some yard work at his Nana’s house over the weekend. The mosquitoes there could pass as pterodactyls. The doctor looked at me like I was crazy. He ordered x-rays to check for a break and blood cultures to check for an infection whole mentioning something about spending the nite while walking out of the room.
The nurse then came in to start an IV and luckily that’s right about when my wife arrived, all dolled up ready for the interview she wasn’t going to make it to. I don’t care how hard you think you are, nothing prepares you for your child getting and IV. NOTHING. You suddenly feel powerless and as you hold them down so that the nurse can shove a sharp object into their little arm, mildly evil.
The X-rays came back fine. So did the blood work. The doctors were baffled. Always a good sign. We might as well have been in an episode of House. That’s when we got the transfer to Children’s Memorial. There a children’s infectious disease specialist would meet us and hopefully figure out what was going on with our little man and his giant foot. My wife rode the ambulance with him while I had to go pick up our daughter and meet them there. As soon as I got into the van to get her, the Ramones’ “I Wanna Be Sedated” came on the radio followed by the Smashing Pumpkins’ “tonite, tonite”. A musical reward for the shit day I’d been living through. Swing by home, relieved the babysitter and headed into the city. She fell asleep to the Smoking Popes on the way. Surprisingly peaceful drive. Thank you.
When we got to hospital number 2 we walked in right as the specialist was giving the diagnosis. Bug bite, he apparently is super sensitive to them. He has sever localized reactions to insect bites. She then went on to warn us that should he ever get stung by a bee he won’t have an anaphylactic attack, but he will swell up to an alarming size. Thanks for the heads up. I am now looking I to ordering a tiny beekeeper’s suit. We were discharged and on our way home, with a slightly less swollen Flintstone foot attached to our little boy and a diagnosis that there is little that we can do to help. Yabba dabba do.
The Ramones: I Wanna be Sedated
The Smashing Pumpkings: tonite, tonite
The Flintstones them song
The Ghost: This is a Hospital (album). Just for the title, plus the Ghost was amazing.