Month Four: Mistakes Were Made
I broke my daughter. Literally. I fractured her arm. It was the worst moment of my life and, thankfully, a moment that she’ll never remember. I was carrying her to the nursery and I tripped, falling forward. Luckily, there was a wall to my left so, by some Mommy instinct, I flung my body to the left in order to avoid dropping her or landing on her. I managed to absorb most of the fall with my shoulder but, unfortunately, her right arm got caught between my left arm and the wall, and I heard a sharp pop. We looked at each other for a moment in surprise and then she screamed in agony. My husband and I immediately rushed her to the ER. In the end, she only needed an Ace bandage to immobilize the arm for a few weeks. We felt incredibly blessed that nothing worse happened.
In the emergency room, I was terrified. I hated that she was in pain and worried that I’d permanently disabled her. Once she was clearly comfortable and we were told that she would heal perfectly, I began to worry that she would hate me; that a deep-seeded seething anger would come from Mommy accidentally fracturing her arm. But by the next day, after the hospital’s pain killers cleared her system, her beautiful, resilient, playful spirit was back in full force – she was smiling and playing with me and just slightly confused by this weird brown thing wrapped around her arm that wouldn’t allow her to suck her fingers. Her unconditional love allowed me to start forgiving myself. She reminded me of the frailty of life, the pointlessness of harboring resentments, and why it’s important to live every day well since you’re rarely in control of what happens next. Not bad for a chick who likes to wiggle around in her own wet, warm poop.
A very touching essay on what might have been a more tragic story and at the very least was a very trying and distressing experience for the parents. Fortunately, at four months old, the child will heal completely and won’t remember the event at all. The story points to the unconditional love we give our children and the unconditional love they return to us.
A very touching event. I understand all those “mommie” feelings. But….don’t worry, Jackie….no matter what you do or say, the kids won’t hate you until you are teenagers! 🙂 Love you, Aunt Whit
ALSO, your title doesn’t seem accurate. I don’t understand ‘Mistakes were made”. Accidents happen. Period. I doubt that you have made ANY mistakes. Jackie, you and Larry are wonderful parents….I can tell. Be yourself…be honest with your kids….that is all you can do.