I wanted to pretend I didn't see it, but I did. I saw it. Little Jack was pulling and tugging on his ears, and any mother worth her diaper bag knows what that means - ear infection. It also means a trip to the pediatrician's office, or what I like to call the bacteria den. So I armed with hand sanitizer and a gas mask, I lugged the baby to the doctor. I held my breath as not to catch typhoid fever, and sat in the waiting room until Jack had aged a full year before they called our name. We headed back. The nurse then wanted to weigh Jack on the scale in the hall before taking him into the exam room. After he'd been weighed, I set him back in his car seat so I could carry him to the exam room where we'd wait until he was old enough to drive. The handle was in the back position, and as I moved the handle upright, Jack tipped out - face first onto the floor. Splat - like a pancake. Maybe I had held my breath too long in the waiting room, because I had just dumped my baby on the ground. The entire nurses station let out a collective gasp as I swooped him up off the floor. I guess I should have strapped him in, but it never occurred to me that he could fall out. Duh - babies can always fall out. That's like baby 101.
The doctor came into examine him, and we had to shout to one another because it was impossible to hear over Jack's screaming. However, I heard one thing loud and clear. His nose was potentially broken, yes broken. All I could think was, "You've got to be kidding me. I came in with an ear infection and we're going to leave with a broken nose?" And, just to top off the appointment with a little something special, Jack got a shot of antibiotic for his ears. I'm not sure if he even noticed - he didn't stop screaming the entire time we were there. Not that I blame him, his mother had dumped him on the floor.
The next day, we had to re-visit the pediatrician to have his nose checked. This time, I left the car seat in the car and just carried him. Obviously a car seat is waaaay too complicated for me to operate.I might start biking my kids around town. Hey - honk if you see us!
Thankfully, the nose wasn't broken. He was ok. He was bruised, but he was all right.
Accidents do happen. Kids get hurt. Babies cry and sometimes, well, babies get dumped on the floor - - face first. However, they do survive. They are resilient. Mothers, well, not so much. I'll never forget Jack's nose bleeding in that office and how bad I felt that I hurt him. Mothers watch every stumble and every fall in slow motion - completely helpless to stop the pain. We can do nothing. We can only hold them, wipe away the tears and try to make it better, so hopefully they'll never recall how they got that scraped knee or where that scar came from, but rather remember their mother, the smell of her hand-sanitizer, and the kiss that made it better.