Sunday, October 21, 2012

Me Versus All of Edie's Enemies



So I know things happen to kids.  I will continue to learn this.  All parents have horror stories.  I know, I know.  I'm just going to have to wallow in this "I Suck as a Dad" feeling for a while until I do something awesome as a dad.  Like save her life from a tornado full of bears.

Edie had an accident.  Which is a really nice way to say it because really what is in my head is: "If you'd just fixed the thing you said you were going to fix, this wouldn't have happened."  It's hard not to put the blame on yourself. I can't speak for Valerie, she told me how bad she felt but she can tell you in her own words.  I don't speak for her.

We have steam radiators and yes, she burned herself.  She burned her palms and her mouth and I don't want to think how exactly she did those things because it makes me physically ill to picture her touching it and not being able to pull away because she's so unsteady when she's standing up.

I was not home, Valerie had put her down for a second.  We don't usually turn on the radiators during the day and Val had turned it on to heat up her room for her nap. She was down for a few seconds.  Kids are fast, things happen in an instant. Val feels awful about it. But it wouldn't have been a problem at all if I had gotten the radiator covers I'd been putting off for a month.

It was an accident and I know we can't dwell on it but it's hard not to keep playing it over and over in your mind.  Valerie took her to the local hospital and they bandaged her up and then told her to take her to Shriner's Burn Hospital in Boston.  That's when she called me and said she was picking me up. She had the car for the day.

I brought Edie a toy from my work to play with on the way to the hospital and then I saw her hands were gauze wrapped past her fingers and she couldn't grasp anything.  I nearly lost it right then.  Luckily, Edie was asleep when I got in the car.  We drove her down.  The nurses were great.  Two of the nurse practitioners were there helping the whole time.

They told us to stop blaming ourselves.  Right.  Theoretically, yes.  I get it.  I can't do that.  It's hard not to.

Edie has second degree burns on her palms.  Her beautiful big lips have blisters and her nose and chin have small marks.  They popped the blister on her right hand and her hands are wrapped up like a boxer.  

She doesn't seem to be in any pain.  She's not even favoring her hands when she crawls.  She's still just as happy. We get the bandages changed tomorrow so we'll get a better idea. But until then I've been letting Edie have as much ice cream and Baby Einstein as she wants.  Sure, she might come out of this a ice-cream-eating-only-monster but I don't care.  I just want her happy.

Here's hoping something dire happens soon that I can leap in front of and save her and give me some of that Adequate Dad feeling back.  A falling piano or falling Renzo Piano would be great.  An out-of-control rickshaw maybe, a time travel plot to kill her, flying snakes, a Hunger Games situation, a swarm of angry ladybugs, I don't care.  I know more is coming.  It's just hard to see her hands wrapped up like this and not think what if.  Fighting something for her would feel like not failing.  A whole little girl and that feeling back are all I want.