My daughter is a klutz. Combine her lack of grace and her proclivity for impulsiveness and you have a 3-year-old walking time bomb. Little C is an accident waiting to happen.
I love my daughter dearly and wouldn’t trade her crazy personality for the world, but I can’t take my eyes off her for a second. I often say she is payback for everything I did to my parents, that if she had been my first child there probably wouldn’t have been a second.
We’re averaging about one ER trip a year with Little C. And these ER trips aren’t the boring ear infection/high fever/croup ER visits we endured with her big brother. No, she likes to make them really interesting.
Let’s see, the first one really wasn’t her fault (actually it was her brother’s fault), but it just proves that she’s an accident magnet. She wasn’t yet 2, and she was playing on the preschool playground with Big C and his classmates. Big C decided to toss a large stick behind him, and that stick managed to land itself in Little C’s eye, leaving a nice red dot, big enough to make mommy worry about a scratched cornea. 2+ hours in the ER for diagnosis of “it’s nothing.”
ER trip #2 was way more exciting because it involved a ride in an ambulance. It was a ridiculously hot day as we sat through Big C’s t-ball opening ceremonies. Little C was hot, tired, and hungry and wanted nothing to do with her stroller. She was protesting that stroller so enthusiastically that she held her breath until she passed out. I’m not overstating when I say I was checking for my daughter’s pulse while a friend called 911. By the time we got to the hospital she was walking and talking. 1+ hour in the ER for diagnosis of “you have a very strong willed child who made herself pass out.”
ER trip #3 was just a few weeks ago. Miss Grace tripped at school and landed her head smack dab in the corner of a table. Tons of blood, ear-piercing screams, and a whole lot of commotion getting to the hospital. 2 hours in the ER for a papoose, 5 stitches, and a doctor who looked like a supermodel and had the bedside manner of a man who had never talked to a child before.
While all of these incidents scared me, I’d have to say the biggest scare came last week. I’d be exaggerating if I said that Little C almost drowned, but there’s really no other word for it. She was under the water and unable to breathe despite her best efforts to surface for an uncomfortable length of time.
I won’t go into the details of how she fell in the pool during her group swim lesson or how the lifeguard did nothing while I sprinted across the pool deck and pulled my daughter out of the water because that’s not the point of this story (and because I’ve already shared my thoughts on this matter with the facility’s aquatics director). My point is that Little C is keeping me on my toes and giving me the grey hairs I somehow avoided with Big C.
I can’t watch her every second of the day, and I certainly can’t cover her in Kevlar. But she’s like a walking time bomb. I can’t predict when she’s going to throw a tantrum worthy of a loss of consciousness or smash her face into a table or require the services of a lifeguard. I guess all I can do is to stay calm and be prepared.
Do you have accident-prone or impulsive children? How do you keep from losing sleep at night?