Thursday, August 21, 2008

In matters of importance

Little Man and I had this exchange this morning.
Me: You're more important to me than anything else in the whole world!
First he starts a little, then a pause, and then:
LM: It startled me when you said that!
Me: Really? Didn't you know that?
Another pause.
LM: [shaking his head in wonder] I really didn't know that.

He's had a weird injury this week. He fell along the cement walkway in the backyard and skinned both knees pretty badly. Not a big deal, I thought, even as he cried and cried. His dad and I got his knees washed, sprayed with antiseptic and bandaged, and then he wanted to curl up on the couch with me and read a book together, which we did. Then he fell asleep, which was odd at that time of day, but not entirely unprecedented.

It's three days later, and he has yet to straighten his legs, much less stand or walk. We've been to the doctor, we've had an x-ray, we're waiting for word. At night he yells and cries in pain, and I give him as much Tylenol as I dare to, but during the day he seems just fine, except for the no-walking thing. He plays, he laughs, he puts dinosaur stickers on a sheet of paper and displays them proudly to me. I lift him on and off the toilet, I carry him from room to room; he stay on the couch or the floor or at the kitchen table for hours. He scoots around on the floor just like The Little Lame Prince, making my heart shrink in my ribs so that it's hard to breathe properly.

The doctor felt all up and down his legs and nothing hurt; she could find no evidence of any other injury besides the surface scrape. The X-ray technician was very kind and patient with him when he refused to straighten his legs because "it hurts!" Bit by bit, inch by inch, she managed to convince him to straighten his legs: "just a little tiny bit more! you're doing great! you're braver than Superman!" And he did, he managed to straighten not only the less-injured leg, but the leg with the dreaded neon-orange bandaid with the more terrible scrape, almost all the way, long enough for four X-ray shots on each leg. He cried a little and clung to me, pulled my head close to his and gripped my neck tightly with both arms, but he did it.

And hasn't done it again since. We're waiting for the doctor to call with the results of the X-ray, and I can't concentrate on anything else, even though school starts in a week and a half and I haven't done my syllabuses yet. What the fuck could it be?

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