New Years Day was a Sunday – and our church was having an informal service at 17.00. (that’s 5:00PM for you non-Europeans or 2 3/17th Leagues in the US) We drove down to the city, pulled up to park, and got out of the van. Matea opened the back door to let the boys out – and guess what fell out? Micah. Apparently he was being a secret agent, and hiding up against the door so you couldn’t see him when you open the door. Of course this also means he can’t see whoever is opening the door, and doesn’t know when it’s going to open. He fell to the parking lot – and landed on the back of his head. Susan and I both jumped out and ran to pick him up – and by then there was already a freakishly-cartoon-like bump on his head. Now, bear in mind – we have four kids, and I’m one of five, so I’ve seen my share of goose-egg-type head bruises. But this one was freaky. For one – it appeared immediately. Also it wasn’t a big rounded lump – it stuck straight out. Basically it looked like someone had taken an ice cube and shoved it under his skin. Also it was right at the base of his skull. So the kids jumped back in the van – and we drove to the Urgences Pédiatriques (which fortunately is just down the street from the church!) Fortunately it was just a bruise – they sent us home and told us to watch for weird signs of a more serious injury over the next 48hrs – but he seems to be just fine. I was going to take the kids skiing today – as they go back to school tomorrow – however there is no way that we could fit a helmut over that thing – further potential injuries notwithstanding.
And really – from the picture – it’s hardly noticeable! I just took this as they were going to bed – so this is over 24 hours after the fact.
It’s events like this that really make you stop and count your blessings. At first I found myself annoyed at how long we had to wait, at how the attending doctor treated me like I was a obsessive-compulsive over-protective hypochondriac parent who brought a boy to the emergency because he fell down. Then as we were driving home I thought about how fortunate we are: that Micah wasn’t seriously hurt, that we live in a country where we have quick, easy, and free access to world-class medical care. That we have the resources just to drive our kids to a hospital – whenever there is something wrong. That we could just take the next day off and sit around the house to make sure that he was fine. That medicine to treat the pain is instantly at hand. Heck – for millions of parents in the world right now, just getting their child a glass of clean water that won’t make them more sick would not be a simple task. Our family is truly, deeply and richly blessed – and we are looking forward to the coming year to find more ways to share what we have with others who don’t.