Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Careful What I Wish For: A Lego Emergency Room Adventure!

Last week I had one of the most unexpected days in my mommy memory bank. It's been a while since I've gone off on a mom-vent, so why not today?

There's this thing about having kids in your life... you NEVER know where the day might end up. I woke up expecting to spend the morning house-hunting (and dreading it), but here's what happened instead:

- 2 year-old son runs up to me and says, "Mommy, nose."

- I look up from the computer, where I had studiously mapped out several houses to go look at. I remember distinctly wishing I didn't have to go house hunting (I should have wished for a million dollars. Who knew THAT was the moment I'd have a wish come true).

- I say to the little guy, "Yes, nose. Good job, you're a very smart little guy!"

- 2 year-old repeats, "Mommy NOSE, nozzzzzze mommy. Nose ouchie. Hurt nozzzzzze. It's okay nozzzzze. All beh-dah nose."

- Huh? I look at his nose. All seems well. "Did you fall down and hurt your nose? It's okay, buddy. All better," I tell him. But he looks at me with those big brown eyes and pokes his nose. He winces.

- Eeek. Is there something up his nose??? I look over to where he'd been playing. A pile of his big brother's Legos lay scattered. (Blog friend, think about it. Legos. Did you get the same sinking feeling as me?)

- Yes, they are teeny, tiny, not-for-children-under-three Legos.

- "Come here buddy, let mommy see your nose," I say, which immediately launches him into evade-the-mommy mode.

- After cornering and overpowering him, I turn him upside down and get a good look.


- Yes, there's a Lego stuck up his nose.

- The shiny little thing looks almost reachable... what do I do? The decision is taken out of my hand when he takes a breath, and the tiny piece of Lego DISAPPEARS INTO HIS EVER LOVING SKULL!!!! RIGHT BEFORE MY EYES!!!! Vanishes! Poof, it's gone!

- I'm no anatomy whiz, but this does not seem ideal.

- *Commence freak out.*

- I call my husband, who btw is a nurse. I'm hoping for some magical solution, just SOMETHING that keeps our little dude out of the ER. No dice. The husband says, "ER, and rush."

- Rush? Do I ever lolly-gag over to the emergency room??!

- The 2 year-old and I zip off to the ER. I keep imagining the Lego going further and further up into his brain with each breath he takes. I can't very well tell the little guy not to breathe! Although in freak-out mode, strange, dizzying thoughts do occur. (Son, stop breathing. We have to keep the Lego from going deeper into your brain).

- Still, he *could* potentially breathe it in further. I model mouth breathing; "Look sweetpea, breathe with your mouth open, like mommy! Ooh, ahh, ooh, ahh! Like a fishy! Like a fishy who shouldn't breathe through his nose!!"

- The 2 year-old stares at me like I'm insane for the whole ride to the hospital.

- I get into the ER and fill out the form. It says, "Reason for visit:" Well, I'm sure they've seen worse. I write, "Lego stuck up my child's nose. Possibly further."

- We are called next. The nurse takes us to a room and leaves to get the doctor right away. Apparently a foreign object stuck in a kid's nose is a big deal (nothing to sneeze at? Okay that's enough). If the Lego goes down the back of his throat he could choke!

- While we wait, another nurse pokes her head in. "Poor thing, he put a Lego up his nose?" Yes, yes he did. I'll be going home with the scarlet "N" for Neglectful mother.

- I hear the nurse laugh a little as she draws the curtain. Several drafts of my, "Worst Mother of the Year Award" acceptance speech come to mind.

- A doctor and yet another nurse come in. The doctor uses that light up pointy thing to look up the 2 year-old's nose. The 2 year-old believes it's a torture device. Either that, or the thing really IS a torture device, and my son has every right to kick the doctor in the face.

- The doctor isn't bothered by the red welt across his cheek, aka my son's footprint. The nurse "restrains" my son and the doc gets a good look. "Oh yeah, it's in there all right."

- Relief! If the doc can see it, there's a good chance brain surgery may not be necessary!

- Out comes a long, thin tube. A huge, glaring light is brought down. This is where it gets ugly, let me tell ya, because if the pointy thingy was a torture device, that tube must have been covered in invisible spikes and been five thousand degrees. But the end result is a thoroughly traumatized, Lego-free child.

- The nurse advises my son not to put things up his nose anymore. Gee, thanks lady. He's already a quivering, sniffling, emotional wreck in my arms. Let's bring out the moral of the story while we're at it.

- All is well. He falls asleep on the car ride home. I swing by McDonald's so he'll have his favorite lunch waiting for him when he wakes up.

- When I get home, my 5 year-old son asks, "Was there really a Lego stuck up his nose?" I sigh. He follows me into the bedroom, upset that I hadn't brought him back his Lego.

- And it's too late in the day to go house hunting. Look at that, wish granted.

As you'll notice at the end of this post, I did this from my phone. For those who are mystified by me, thumbing away, today it all started with a call from my daughter's keyboard academy while I was taking her home from Brownies. She had missed last week, and they wanted to do a make-up session today, and the surprise lesson left me unprepared for an hour of free time. All I had for boredom-diffusement was my blackberry :)

Everyone in the studio is already used to me typing away on my laptop, so this antisocial change in keyboard size probably didn't phase them much. I got home, finished the Lego Saga here on my phone while I made dinner, and here I am, about to load up the dishwasher. C'est la vie of a modern mommy. :)
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile


  1. What a day! Foreign objects where they don't belong is a mommy right of passage I think. My 5yo stuck a little pellet bb in his ear a few months back and we couldn't get it out. It was a Saturday so we took him to the child instacare and they tried to flush it out - no such luck. Waited and took him to and ENT that was supposed to be for children and he couldn't get it out. My son winced and the doctor basically wouldn't even try. He said the 5yo needed to be sedated and he set up an apt with children's hospital for a week later. This was becoming a major ordeal. When the nurse called the day before to talk about my insurance benefits I learned that sedating a child was almost like surgery and we have a $1000 deductible. I freaked. I couldn't understand why a bb in a kids ear was going to cost me a $1000. I finally called a doctor I know in my neighborhood who referred me to another pediatric ENT and that guy was so nice and all the nurses and interns and whoevers(there was like ten people in the room) were really great. They used a tiny camera and I got to watch the whole thing on the t.v. It was an exciting moment for them. I was just grateful they go it out and it only cost me the copay to an office visit. Can you believe all that fuss over a BB in a kids ear?
    Sorry I wrote a novel. Glad everything came out okay - bad pun.

  2. Mary, I LOVED that you wrote a novel!! I'm sorry you and your little guy had to go through all that, but I have to admit it's therapeutic hearing others' horror stories. :) I hope your 5yo wasn't in pain, and I'm glad he's all better now... especially without costing you a thousand dollars, that's insane!

    Write a novel anytime, I promise I absolutely love it :)

  3. Oh, if that's not the epitome of a "mommy day" I don't know what is! You poor mama. I think I usually end up just as traumatized or worse than my kids when stuff like that happens. It sounds like the makings of a perfect PB story to me! :-)

  4. I know I shouldn't have laughed so much, but yesterday (A.K.A. Tuesday???) I woke up to a blood-curdling scream. I'm still asleep when my kids get home. Anyway, I jump from my bed and bend over the railing and ask Chloe what's wrong. There's no gushing blood and she's sitting in her father's office chair so I'm not nearly as panicked as I was like five seconds before. So I rush down the steps and ask her once again, "What's wrong?" She can't answer. The screaming and crying are using up her ability to speak coherently. I cradle her face in my hands. "You have to calm down to tell Mommy what happened?" "My foot!" she wails. I look at her foot and shrug. She points down and I see a pile of stuff on the ground. Apparently, her foot had been there under that pile at some point. So I start rifling through it. Some humongous metal thing that looks like it belongs on the inside, not outside, of a computer is that last thing I see. She's still beside herself, so I carefully remove her sock. Oh, yeah. Broken toe. Broken. Blood streaming. Nail already blue. Let me tell you. Worse. Alarm. Ever. Glad the boy's all right. Guess it's just one of those weeks.

  5. I'd be so mad at that nurse! She didn't need to say that. And I'd also throw out every single lego in the house! (But the I bet that would upset his sibling)

    Good thing you brought him in to the ER right away! You're a great mommy!

  6. Oh my. That sounds like quite the day. And now I wonder if I really want kids after all ... Good luck with house hunting, it sounds like you have a lot on your plate!

  7. Wow, what a day! (I feel your pain, but I admit it was an entertaining read.) Glad your 2-year-old is all better!

  8. Oh man, you captured that day so well. Sorry you had to endure it, but what a great, and well told story.

    (Sigh) I suppose these are the things I have to look forward to if I ever become a mommy. (or a daddy)

  9. LOL! Such a great story. And so relatable.

    But you don't deserve the Worst Mother of the Year Award because even if this isn't something that happens to every mom (which it is), you are saved by your enviable multitasking SKILLZ. I'll have to figure out that Blackberry thing one of these days, I know I will. You make it looks so perfect for Writer Mommy Life!

    Thanks for the LOL story!

  10. Wow - I'm so going to be careful what I wish for in the future! I'm glad your son is okay, and this was a great story! You're a fantastic storyteller. :)

  11. omg now that is how you show tension! holy crap. I'm so glad your son's okay!

    And I'm uber-impressed with your blackberry typing skills.

  12. Whew! What an ordeal. I agree that lodged objects/swallowed objects does seem to be some kind of mommy rite of passage.

    Hope your Thursday has been more calm!

  13. This reminds me of the time my sister stuck a barbie-doll-scrunchie (small rubber band) up her nose. My mother would probably want me to tell you that you are in good company and that you are not a bad parent.

    Oh -- I blogged about it awhile back. Here's the post if you're interested:

  14. Didn't get a chance to finish this whole article today, I keep getting busy, but I'll finish tomorrow. I got to the lego up the nose discovery and started laughing to myself. I want to know what happened. TTY tomorrow.

  15. Poor Baby! And you are not a bad parent! The day before my first birthday I swallowed 3 pennies, which my doctor thought was a quarter. That night was also the night of a bad accident which meant we had to wait for hours in the hospital before the doctor had to stick a tube down my tiny baby throat. And might I mention that my parents were also dealing with 2 and 4 year olds. Fun first birthday for my parents, right?

  16. Wow, that sounds like quite the day, Diana. Thank heavens the doctor was able to get it out with only a little torture involved. Your poor little guy.

    With three kids, I wonder how I managed to avoid any ER trips due to lodged foreign objects. I did however have various visits for other reasons, including staples in the head for both my boys after they each managed to split their noggins open at about age 3.

  17. You know, when you tell me the story of the lodged Lego, it reminds me of the time I always tries to put Play-Doh in my mouth, sadly knowing after several years the commercials say not to eat them. Great story :p

  18. Poor thing! You and the child both! I was right with you when you watched the brick disappear from sight.
    My kids concentrated on posting bricks and jam sandwiches in the video player. I did find the oldest trying to climb in the washing machine too.
    I bet if you'd wanted to go house hunting the same thing would have happended.

  19. Wow, sorry I read this at work and was unable to comment there... that's just nuts, and a little funny. I'm sorry. Reminds me of that movie with Michelle Pfeiffer and George Clooney, what was it... *looks up in IMDB* Ah, "One Fine Day" cute one ;o) There's a scene with that very thing in it!

    Life works in crazy ways doesn't it?