Saturday, May 30, 2009

There's a first time for everything

It was supposed to be a romantic weekend at the Cape, well not so much a weekend, but one night filled up with a wedding, but that's all we needed. It was, afterall, the first time we had ever left the boys overnight, EVER. The only time I had been away from them was to give birth to their brothers. So we packed up the suitcase, left a short list of details like bus drop-offs and medicine doses, gave the boys extra long hugs (before the older two had gone off to school that morning) and set out on our drive to the afternoon wedding ceremony an hour away. I was the usual anxious mother--nervous about leaving her children--but never actually putting any thought or words into what I was afraid would possibly happen. It was only on night afterall.

The wedding ceremony was beautiful, and the details of the reception breathtaking. We ended the night early with the intention of attending the "after party" and headed back to our hotel room to change. It was only then that we realized that each of our phones had a message from an hour before from Perry's sister. I hesitantly returned the call that said "call me back when you get this message," more worried that I had woken her up when she picked up the phone, than anything else. "No, I'm awake. I'm actually at the hospital with Camden." My stomach immediately dropped straight to my toes and she proceeded to tell me that he hit his head playing ball and needed 3 to 4 stitches. Stitches!? We had never been to the ER with any of the boys, the oldest of whom is nearly 8. They had never so much as needed anything more than an antibiotic, lots of fluids and cuddles from me to treat their ailments. And here we are on our first night away, nearly 2 hours and over 100 miles away, and my little boy was in the ER to get stitches. I held myself together until I hung up the phone and then I burst into tears, sobbing heaving sobs into the hands that covered my face. "My baby is in the hospital getting stitches and I'm not even there with him." We have to go, we have to pack, check out and go. I have to be with him. I knew I woudn't make it to the hospital in time. I knew that by the time we got home he would most likely be snuggled in his bed fast asleep. But I had to see him, to hold him, to make sure he was ok. We did, and I drove those 100 plus miles home in the dark fog at 1:00 am, unsure of exactly how to go, struggling to reverse the directions in my mind from those printed on the invitation card (the ones I had made BTW), flipping the interior lights on and off so I could read them and double check the route numbers and direction. By the grace of God, and a true miracle we made it home. And there was Camden sound asleep in his bed with a gauze bandage taped to his forehead and his Gameboy still on in his hand. I kissed him, and whispered how much I love him in his ear, and how sorry I was for not being with him. I curled up in bed next to him and wrapped him in my arms hoping that my love was reaching him in his dreams. And I slept the worst sleep of my life.

The next morning Camden awoke at 10:50 am, and when he saw me in the hallway outside his bedroom he smiled and said, "Mom, what are you doing home? You're not supposed to be home now." He's always thinking of others. "Honey," I replied, I had to see you. I had to make sure you were ok." And he said with a smirky hint of disgust filled with love and a roll of his eyes, "I'm fine, Mom, totally fine. I didn't feel a thing. The stitches didn't even hurt. It was like nothing I've ever felt before."

It was like nothing I've ever felt before either, Little Man. And I hope I never have to feel it again.


LMc said...

Oh my heavens, poor Camden! And poor, poor Mom!!
Its kind of like falling off a bike, you have to get back on - and go away for a night with your husband.
Glad Camden isn't scarred, and hoping you aren't either;-)


kate said...

Oh Michelle!!!!I'm so sorry that you had to experience this!!! I am only glad to hear that it wasn't worse and that he is doing okay now...but wow, there isn't anything else like that awful feeling when you know your child is hurt in a bad, bad way. at the start of our first weekend away from the kids last year, Nate found his way into a bottle of my sister's Ambien (sleeping pills)!!! We were still at her house (just about to head out there door to leave for Charleston) and we didn't even know if he had swallowed any. So, off to the hospital we all went...thank goodness he didn't ingest any, but wow, was it scary!!!