The Knee Bone’s Connected to The Leg Bone – by Margaret A. Hart
It’s been a few weeks since my last Tuesday blog and I’ve missed my time to unwind and get my thoughts out. Things are always busy this time of year with the start of school, getting everyone’s schedules settled and synched with the school calendar, and the start of many activities. In my family, there are also birthdays and anniversaries to celebrate, and the beginnings of planning for my son’s early December birthday, and the holidays.
Over the last few weeks, it seems that each time I sat down to write, something came up that distracted me or took away my blogging time. Last week it was my son’s toe fracture. At a bowling birthday party, he accidentally dropped a nine pound ball on his right foot that fractured one of the larger bones in his big toe. I didn’t see it happen, but heard blood curdling screams and saw my son on the ground in a fetal position. It was beyond painful.
Fast forward to the emergency room and x-rays, and sure enough, there was the fracture; a small, white, triangle-shaped ghost on the x-ray. He was fitted with a wooden shoe, and told that the fracture should heal, as long as he kept his foot stable and didn’t run or jump or bend for at least six to eight weeks. What???? Six to eight weeks???? We were both not happy about that.
I spent the next day taking him to a podiatrist for a follow up, and secretly hoping he would say it wasn’t so bad, after all. No such luck. The bad news: keeping a very active boy still—and happy— while his toe bone heals. The good news: it wasn’t broken, and the podiatrist said that there was a better-than-average chance he would heal within three weeks, because, as we all know, children’s bodies heal much more quickly than do adults.
As Murphy’s Law would have it, however, he was only two games into fall soccer season, and was about to start his boys hip hop dance class when this happened. So this past Thursday, he watched his friends twist and jump and stomp their feet, to a fast and loud hip-hop beat. And on Saturday, he sat on the sidelines and cheered on his soccer teammates to a 2-0 victory.
We are now almost two weeks into “no activity” and ironically, it’s not so bad. What may be helping is that one of the girls in his second grade class, who he has known since Kindergarten, sprained her ankle, and is wearing a special boot. They sit together at recess and gym and keep each other company. The special shoe my son wears has not slowed him down. Despite reminding him to take it easy, he has managed to run around the house chasing the cats, and is pain free. A good sign, we hope, that the follow up x-ray will mean he is back in business!
The lesson learned from this incident is a good one. We were invited to a family birthday party held at a local club that had a private bowling alley. While there were kid-sized shoes, there were no kid-sized bowling balls, so the children were using two hands to bowl with the lightest balls they could pick up. The grandfather of the birthday girl was trying to show the kids the proper way to hold the ball. My son, eager to please, and minding his manners, slipped his slender fingers into the holes. As he attempted to draw back the ball with one hand, and release it forward onto the lane, the ball slid off his fingers.
My son was in tears as he explained to my husband and I that he didn’t want to hurt the “Grandpa’s” feelings by not complying, even though the ball was much too heavy for his little fingers to hold. We explained to him that it’s okay to say, in this or similar situations, “Thank you, but I’m not comfortable doing that.” My son said he thought about it, but wanted to be polite. We talked about manners and told our son how proud we were that he wanted to show respect for his friend’s grandfather. But we also told him something that I suspect many parents tell their children. When all else fails, simply say, “My mom and dad told me I can’t do that.”
At least we’ve gotten some use out of the x-ray, a copy of which the ER doctor gave us. It has proven educational at share day in school, and is proudly displayed on our refrigerator just in time for Halloween!