a cautionary tale

we’re back. and i have plenty to show and tell, but must start with this jewel. i would feel awful if any of your children suffered the same fate as our youngest because i hesitated to share.

we were sleeping. well, some of us were sleeping. ok, a couple of us were sleeping – you know, the adults – leaving the kids unsupervised. but really, what kind of trouble could they get in? and when you’re a kid and up way too late you get a little hungry. and what is better at midnight, or a little after, than cereal.

honey stars cereal. and if you are 8 and the box has never, ever been opened what might be the best way to get the cereal out of the bag??

this is where bh and i enter the picture. a11 tiptoes into our room and whispers, “uh, s8’s finger is bleeding, like alot.” i wake up and go out to see – i mean really, how bad can it be?

a blood trail. hmmm…

and what i’m pretty sure is a mostly severed finger. i figure this might require medical attention. so i wake bh and let him in on what’s going on. he checks it out and agrees. but, we’re in penang. we don’t know where a hospital might be. we think it’s probable they have one and figure we’ll call our new malay taxi friend. who says he can’t come, but he will send a friend. so we go outside and wait.

what a brave face s8’s put on. when the teksi (that’s how they spell it in penang) arrives we say we want to go to a hospital and we even say emergency room. but the driver has a much better idea and we drive around and end up here.

which is so obviously not a hospital or even related to a hospital but we brave on. we head in and have to wake up everyone – including the maybe nurse and the probably not a doctor, we also woke up the maybe nurse’s brother, but we didn’t mean to. they agree with me, stitches were in order. we get s8 settled – or at least laying down.

and the most likely not a doctor gives him a shot, a painkiller, you know, something to take the edge of and get him to quit screaming, “stitches, i’ve got to have stitches?? why??? i don’t want stitches.” over and over and over. and there seemed to be a whole lot of anesthetic in this shot. like maybe enough to sedate a horse. but it did nothing. didn’t even cause s8 to stop his chanting, well, he did stop temporarily, just long enough to yell, “a shot?? i don’t want a shot!” the i like to pretend i’m a doctor moved on to the suturing. about this time i ask the poser doctor if he was dr. gomez (that’s the name on the door). i was already somewhat doubting that he was dr. gomez. he was indian and i’m pretty certain gomez is not a common indian name. and all he said was, “no.” no offer of who he might be or if he had any experience. he gave s8 a few shots of local anesthetic, removed some yarn from his knitting project (not really, but the sutures he used were thick enough to make a warm blanket) and started his not quit professional – and nowhere near as good as my 11 year old could do – job of suturing. while in the process of repairing s8’s finger the i’m not really a doctor i just play one in a clinic in penang’s cell phone rang – twice. the second time he stood up and had the i begged and begged and begged and finally someone let me play nurse person reach into his front pocket to get his phone and hold it up to his ear so he could have a little chat. he then finished up the stitches. wrapped up s8’s finger – really good -i think maybe to cover the evidence of his inexperience. gave him one more shot of pain killer, gave us envelopes with three different kinds of medications, one for pain, one for swelling and antibiotics and we were on our way. with instructions to not get the finger wet. we were headed home – i was feeling a little disconcerted, but figured it was probably really going to be okay as the teksi passed this real live hospital.

with a real live emergency room where they keep all the real live honest to goodness doctors.

the next day we headed to the beach.

where s8 submerged his finger in the great big ocean. because he’s 8 and it was there. this did allow us to get a good picture of the fine suturing job that dr. not doogie howser did. does it look swollen to you?

not being medical professionals ourselves, perhaps we’re wrong. perhaps this is a good job and we’re being way to hard on someone who could really be but probably isn’t a true to life m.d.

what do you think?

12 thoughts on “a cautionary tale

  1. I just stopped by your blog and thought I would say hello. I like your site design. Looking forward to reading more down the road.

    thanks, eric!!

  2. oh my.
    i am suddenly no longer jealous at all of you holidaying in malaysia. what a nightmare!
    I dont know about stitches and what they should look like, but at least scars are cool anyway.

    he is most excited about being able to show off this scar. and if it’s a bad job of suturing it makes for a much better scar!!

  3. Crikey!!!
    See how effective it is to learn from experience? I guarantee he won’t do that again! Ouch.
    Those stitches do look kind of, um, higgledy piggeldy!

    he did say that he had learned something – no more late night snacks of cereal. that’s not exactly no more using a knife to open cereal bags, but hopefully it’s close!!

  4. you have probably just scared your mother to death! sounds like it was yet another eventful vacation for you all!

    yes, it had it’s moments. nothing like getting a jeep stuck in lava fields, or something like that!!

  5. Ouch! What’s a vacation without a little adventure, huh?

    too true. it’s no fun until someone gets hurt! 😉

  6. I must admit that I would have been tempted to jump out of the moving vehicle when I saw the hospital. Ah, life overseas! By the way, was “I wanna be a nurse” wearing stilettos?

    The ocean was probably the best thing for it. Salt water heals everything.

    no, she wasn’t wearing stilettos. had she been it would have calmed all my nerves!! i sort of thought the same thing about the salt water.

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  8. you guys don’t do anything simple anymore. safety is out the window. sounds like a movie to me on your latest family adventure.

    i’m telling you, get a publisher lined up now and you can publish a book a year. finance your trip home.

    btw, i hope you are scrapbooking this blog so your kids and their kids will have a documented account of your life events.

    simple, what’s simple?? the more complicated the better – that’s our motto!! 😀 i’m not scrapbooking this, but for christmas i’m gonna ask to have the first year published. there are companies that do that, so i hear.

  9. per my mom…. (since I can’t talk her into creating a login…

    could not stop laughing…. you could hear your voice and your animation telling this story. so could i.

    aw, shucks… and what a good daughter you are doing the dictation and all.

  10. The Grizwall Family Vacation Part 105
    Nice to see you guys are carrying on the tradition!!!

    we’re nothing if not team players!!

  11. Pingback: i knew it « transplanting me

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