So it looks like SOMEONE inherited his mother's considerable grace and poise.
I got a call from the YMCA around 3 pm — or more accurately, a call from an unknown number that I ignored until I realized the same number then called our home phone number, then called my mobile AGAIN, like ohhhhkay that probably is important enough to warrant interacting with another human being, uggghhhhh — that Ezra had taken a "bad fall" at camp. Could I come get him? Cuz. Yeah.
I've developed a pretty steely solid reaction to scrapes and cuts and bruises over the years, but even I wasn't fully prepared for this one. Ezra was sitting with the non-tore-up side of his face towards me as I approached, and then when he turned to look at me it was like, BAM. THE PHAAAAANTOM OF THE OPPPPPERAAAAAAA.
I gasped, because he was still actively oozing blood around his eye and lips, which was wrong and bad because now he was upset and actively oozing tears.
No one could really give me a clear picture of what happened, other than he was just walking one second and then face-down on the cement the next. A counselor brought up the possibility of a concussion, and after I scrunched my face in skepticism because it looked like only the side of his face was injured, she brushed his hair aside and revealed that the initial Point Of Faceplant appeared to be the slowly forming yet still colorless goose egg on his forehead.
"Ohhhh," I said.
They brought Noah to me to take home as well, a move Noah was OBJECTING to in a VERY FORCEFUL OUTSIDE VOICE, because they were in the middle of free swim and he was about to prove he could swim the entire length of the pool to earn his "green band." (A green band earns you the right to free swim in the deep end, and is also a total staaaatus symbolllll.) And now here I was, denying him of the opportunity like a monster.
"Go look at your brother's face," I hissed in my nicest, don't-start-with-me tone.
"Yeah, I saw that already," he shrugged. "But I'M not hurt."
(EMPATHY! It's what's for dinner.)
So I piled not one, but TWO sobbing children into the car (Ike was respectfully abstaining from protests at that particular juncture) and started home.
After a few minutes I noticed that Ezra's head had lolled to the side. He was asleep.
"Shiiiit," I thought.
No amount of EZRA WAKE UP WAKE UP EZRA HEY HEY HEY EZRA RICK RICK RICK RICK-ing did much of anything. He'd open his eyes for a second before letting his head drop back down to sleep.
Back at home, CHAOS. An ERUPTION of it. My own personal volcano hell of too many small people with too many needs. Ezra and Noah were both still in their swim clothes and sopping wet. Ezra wouldn't walk so I carried him in, soaking my own clothes while hollering at a now-protesting Ike that I'd be right back for him and barking demands at Noah to unbuckle brothers, open doors, get his own snack, change his clothes, JUST BE USEFUL, IS ALL.
I put Ezra down inside and told him to please, try not to sleep.
"I CAN NEVER SLEEP AGAIN?" he wailed. "I CAN NEVER SLEEP AGAIN! I FELL DOWN AND NOW I CAN NEVER SLEEP AGAIN!"
I called our pediatrician. Oh hey, is there a good sure-fire way to tell if my recently head-injured child has a concussion or is just, you know, kinda zonked? There is? Awesome! What is...oh. The emergency room. Greeeeat.
And so, for the second time in his short life, I dragged Ezra and his busted face into our local ER. Jason rushed from work to meet us there, which was good because the mountain of snacks and juice boxes I'd frantically tossed in the bag and figured would buy me an hour or so of butts-in-seats at the hospital barely lasted through the entire 10-minute car ride there.
The good news is that the CHAOS ERUPTION seemed to have perked Ezra up, and he was no longer acting so scary-listless and tired. He asked for snacks and whined about wanting to play with the toys in the pede ER waiting room. The bad news is that he perked up ONLY after we'd officially entered the ER system and we were now basically stuck there until a doctor examined him, which meant a lot of waiting around to be told what we already knew: HE'S FINE.
And he was/is. A mild concussion, yes, but nothing serious. Maybe wake him up once overnight and get him to answer a basic question, but we probably didn't even need to worry about it that much. None of the cuts required stitches, so they cleaned him up, slathered him in Neosporin and some impressively oversized Band-Aids.
Then they gave him some juice and sent us on our merry way.
Later in the evening, after a dinner of delivery pizza and some cartoons and cookies and basically WHATEVER YOU WANT, OH INJURED SMALL ONE, I finally got Ezra to talk about what happened.
"I was walking at swim camp to the nap place and fell down on the sidewalk."
Yep. That's my boy, all right. The klutz is strong with us both.
(I'll spare you the morning-after pictures. Kid looks like he went 10 rounds with Rocky Balboa. I'm hoping that bitch of a sidewalk is hurting this morning too. Ezra may be small but he's got a deceptively hard head, at least.)