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Friday, April 26, 2013

Accidents Happen- not as much as you'd think!

                                    Lulu taking a shot!

When all five of my kids attended the same primary school I bonded with the school’s office lady, Monica. She too had been through the nail-biting trauma of bringing up five kids very close in age and was a compassionate, caring source of support.

One day when I arrived to pick them all up, I’d only just skulked through the gate when I espied Monica anxiously scampering towards me across the netball court.

“Pinky! We’ve been trying to contact you. Don’t panic!” she blurted out, “Hagar’s been taken to the hospital in an ambulance, but he’s alright!”

My face turned not fifty, but just one shade of greenish-grey.

“Is it his head?” I asked weakly. That was always my first question. You can live without an arm or a leg but you can’t live without a head.

“He broke his arm playing football,” she continued, “but he was a very brave little boy. He walked into the office holding up his dangling arm and said, ‘I think I broke my f#cking arm’. The paramedics gave him some gas and he was giggling the whole time they were putting him in the ambulance.”

It was Monica who rang me when Padraic was hit in the head with a cricket bat. “He’s fine Pinky,” she said calmly, “the PE teacher said he’s seen the same injury dozens of times.”

He certainly didn’t look fine with a lump over his eye the size of an emu egg, but I trusted Monica. Padraic (apart from a headache that night) recovered rapidly, although he cried the next morning when he saw himself in the mirror, the poor little buggar. 

                            Padraic sporting a shiner.

Years later I still run into a retired Monica at the shopping centre. “How are the kids?” she’ll ask in with genuine interest.

“Aaaah Monica, those boys have been getting into a bit of trouble,” I’ll reply.

“Oh don’t worry about that! We had to pick up one of our kids from the police station lock-up three times when he was in his teens. He got over it. He’s a Doctor now.”

I love Monica.

All of the boys lived on the wild side, playing contact sports and physically pushing the envelope; but strangely they didn't come to too much grief and it was Tomboy Lulu who sustained the more serious injuries, with two broken arms and a broken foot to her credit. 

The first time she broke her arm falling off a bike and, just like a neglectful mother, I presumed it was only a sprain. She had to go to hospital the following morning to have five teeth removed in preparation for braces. The following day after her hospital stay she was still complaining about her arm so I took her to the doctors, who promptly sent her for x-rays. They unfortunately revealed a hairline fracture requiring a cast.

Taking her shopping with an shockingly swollen, bruised face and a broken arm drew some alarmed looks from my fellow shoppers. I felt like putting a sign on her saying, 

Dental work and bike accident. Don’t judge my mother! She’s not a child basher!

She broke her arm a second time in the first two minutes of a basketball game and her foot when she jumped out of a tree.

Unlike my own mother who wouldn’t even allow me to own a bike, I wasn’t a particularly over protective mother, but tomorrow will be a true test of my maternal fortitude. 

Tomorrow, as some of you know, is the day Hagar plunges into the air from somewhere around 10 000 feet, with a blanket tied to a piece of string attached to his torso. There’s no coming back from that if something goes wrong.

So stay tuned for tomorrow’s post which will hopefully be a colourfully photographic and hilarious tale describing how I watched Hagar land perfectly on the beach whilst I drained the blood from Scotto’s hand leaving deep talon marks in his wrist.

In the meantime, pass me the Valium and… Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee…