Sam has a fever and an earache. His Mama took him to the walk-in hours at his pediatrician office in the morning. Walk-in hours at a children’s doctor’s office are a really great innovation. The sick children are separated from the well children, the doctor can see you without an appointment and the parent’s anxiety over what is wrong may be relieved quicker.
According to the doctor Sam has a “flaming ear infection”. Mom brings him home to me and then goes out to pick up the prescription. Generally, Sam is upset when anyone leaves his condo, let alone his Mama. He did not even seem to notice.
A child in pain tugs at emotional heartstrings differently than a happy, smiling, playful or sleeping child. They are small and vulnerable. They hurt without knowing why. When sick, I am crabby and cranky and miserable and I know what is going on.
After his Tylenol, Sam was distracted from his pain long enough to give me a little grin every now and then. He wanted me to play our little game only he did not even run from me. He would walk several steps and look back at me. I would pick him up, kiss his neck and put him down. He would take another step and we would repeat the whole process. In a very short while he wanted to be held again.
He ate all of his cereal and mashed bananas as his mother left for her hair appointment. He barely noticed her leaving. We sat on the sofa. He would lean on me or set on my lap or slide down to the floor. Curious George was on the TV. He liked that for a little while. Then he was back on the sofa, leaning on me, sitting on my lap, sliding to the floor. At one point he clearly wanted me to rock him and I complied. So unlike Sam, he fears the sandman during the day something fierce.
Fifteen minutes before his Dad came home, Sam slid to the floor, laid his head down and was asleep almost instantaneously.
Glancing back as I left, my heartstrings tugged, poor baby Sam………..
Disclaimer: Pseudonyms will be used for persons 17 years of age and under
©2011 Susan Kendall. All rights reserved