How many times, as a parent, have you said, “Stop before you hurt yourself?” If you’re like me you probably can’t remember the number of times you’ve said it.
Lately my three youngest children have been “off the chain.” They have managed to do the opposite of everything I have said – especially the girls. Last night was no different.
I don’t know why, but the girls – 6-year-old Amareah and Anna, 4 – decided that everything they did in the shower was funny. They were showering, laughing, sliding and splashing. I said, “Stop before someone gets hurt” about three times. Not minutes after I said it the last time, I hear Amareah saying, “Anna, mommy said stop and calm down. Annaaaa…” Then Anna’s hysterical laughter stopped abruptly, there was a pause and a loud cry.
I wasn’t feeling that great so I was laying on the couch. For a moment I considered not moving from my spot. I figured that it was as usual: She bumped her head or scared herself and was just screaming. After Amareah said, “Anna what did you do?” about a thousand times getting louder with every instance, I thought that I better take a peek.
The scene when I walked into the bathroom was two naked little girls with shower caps on, one looked scared and shocked, and the other one had her hand covering her mouth. I zeroed in on Anna, got closer and with hands on hips said (still not wanting to think she was really hurt), “Where did you hurt yourself? Let me see.”
She removed her hand from her mouth and her entire mouth was filled with blood, and her two front, top teeth plus one to my left were pushed back. I put my hands on my head, which felt like it was gonna explode. And said, through clenched teeth, “this.is.why.I.say.listen.Why.won’t.y’all.listen!?” Thereafter I was a nervous wreck, with my emotions raw from not feeling well and the on-edge nerves from the rowdy kids, I was already emotional.
Tears fell and each of my children began to cry while running around trying to follow the directions I was giving. I quickly dressed Anna and my neighbor went with us to the ER last night.
This morning was a trip to the dentist. Now doses of antibiotics and pain medicines later, Anna will have 30 days of no biting into anything with everything cut into small pieces so she can minimize the use of her front teeth. (One is looser than the other) Everything is okay, so to speak, but she’ll have to be careful and I have to look out for any infection or something irregular that could result in harm to her adult teeth.
She’s excited about the goodies she’s allowed now: ice pops, Jell-O, yogurt, macaroni and cheese. Ut oh, forgot the applesauce and I should get some watermelon. She’s thrilled that she gets to do things that are otherwise frowned upon like pulling apart meat and cheese into small pieces. And she’ll get lots of soup along with extra personalized attention.
Needless to say, I have been a nervous wreck every time she moves… and she does a lot of that. Right now she’s napping quietly next to me on the couch and I’m thrilled to just gaze at her sweet face.. I’m just happy that she’s okay and hope to keep her safe while she heals. I better stock up on the wine because what 4 year old do you know that can be still?