Having a child means that you worry, all the time, every day. Every time Liam falls I worry that he has a concussion, has broken a bone, or has knocked out a tooth. Well, this morning one of those fears came to realization. While getting out of the shower with his Dad, Liam slipped and hit his mouth/chin on the lip of the shower. I knew right away that this was a bad situation. Within seconds there was a bloody gash on his chin. It seemed like a bad scratch, nothing too bad. Then he started to shake and could not stop crying.
I carried him into the kitchen to look in his mouth, that is when I noticed a huge gash on the roof of his mouth and blood all over his teeth. He was still crying uncontrollably, so I focused on calming him down, and cleaning up the blood. When the blood started to flow a little less, and Liam was just whimpering, I took another look in his mouth. His two front teeth had been chipped and once again, there was blood all around his teeth. I was so worried about him, because he cried for almost 45 minutes and had a glazed look for about an hour.
As soon as urgent care opened, we took him in to make sure there was no concussion and to have him checked out. The whole time, from accident to to doctor discussing his injuries with us, I was thinking about whether or not he was ok. Did he have a broken jaw? Would he need stitches? How much pain is he in? How can I help him? Will his teeth be ok? All of these questions ran through my head. I also kept thinking about how horrible of parents we are to let this sort of thing happen to him.
Luckily, the doctor said the laceration on his chin would just need to be cleaned frequently and treated with Neosporin and a band-aid. He also said that his jaw is fine, his teeth are still firmly in place, and that there is no concussion. Tomorrow will not only be Liam's first visit to the dentist, but also his 2nd birthday. What a wonderful way to spend it!
He seems to be doing better now. We gave him some Tylenol and he is napping well. He was irritated because it hurt to drink out of a sippy cup (so he may be learning how to use an open cup) and it hurt to suck on his binky (of which he may now be weened). Other than that, he was in good spirits and back to his normal self.
Today reminded me of the stress and anxiety I felt when he was a newborn. How would I keep him safe? How can I make him feel better? What if.....? I don't know what the answer is. We can't protect them from everything, but we feel that protection is our most important job as a parent. How do we deal with the things we can't fix, change, or help? I wish I knew, because I have never in my life, felt as helpless as I do in these situations.