Sunday was a strange day. We missed church due to excessive cuddling, a "problem" I don't usually have with my active boy wonder. We set out to do our laundry instead.
While I was loading up washers, Caleb had snuck an ALL liquid laundry pod to the next aisle over. He knows I don't like him playing with those things. They are not safe and they are not toys. Hence, his sneaking.
As I loaded my washers up, I heard this disorienting screaming from him unlike any I am accustomed to. I thought that maybe he had gotten stuck somewhere with his arm or something. I rounded the corner to see that he had pressed the detergent pod against the washer and it burst on his face and in his eyes. I picked him up and hoisted his body over the sink. He screamed because the water was cold, and he screamed because he was scared. He couldn't see. And even more disorienting, he didn't know what was happening to him. "Mommy, I'm scared." He wailed,"What's happening!!!"..... "I can't see!!"
Of course, worse things happen. In fact at this time, on my heart and mind is a little baby born to my friend who is extremely premature. He needs prayer. Still, things happen, and you remain calm but deal with it as best you can with a 44 pound strong man child fighting your every move because they don't like the waterfall on their head and in their eyes. It's uncomfortable. I wouldn't like it either.
I left all our laundry splayed out all over the place and took him home. He was calmer, chipper, until I got him in the bath to force the screaming, fighting, big boy under the water in an effort to flush his eyes out.
I called his dad for help. I realize I don't actually need the help. I can do it myself, and I did. But my laundry was splayed all over the place, Caleb was frantic, hysterical and fighting, and I needed to take him to the Urgent Care. So yea, some help would have been nice.
His dad did not answer (he never does. Not even for birthday calls). We left a message with me asking urgently where he was and with my child in the background in hysterics.
I read the detergent bag and it advised medical attention among other threatening words. So, off we went to the Urgent Care.
In hindsight, I would advise against going to Urgent Care in those circumstances. I didn't think it was a problem, but Urgent Care is not set up for that kind of injury for eyes.
Caleb was a trooper. Not much was done at Urgent Care besides them asking questions and looking at him. He flipped out at any dealings with his eyes. We took eye wash and left.
My sister came over and I was unsure if I needed or wanted her to. But she offered and so I agreed. We all ate In N Out, and Caleb was again, in normal, chipper spirits as usual. But he still had symptoms hours later that were not good. And his eyes urgently burned every 15 minutes and needed the wash. We tried washing his eyes out again, but it was to no avail, and what I later learned, was too late at that point.
I decided to call poison control (as per the detergent bag and a tiny bit of common sense). I learned that because a few hours had passed since Caleb's incident and he was still having the symptoms he had, it was best to take him to the ER. It was really up to me, but I knew we had to go.
So, I packed Caleb some food, and off we went to the ER. My sister went home, having spent a few hours with us already, which was a great help while I handled the laundry mess I had earlier left behind.
Caleb ended up having a corneal abrasion (scratched eye) and still had some residue in his eyes. He had some tests done and was freaking out. A large man had to hold him down. He was very upset about the whole ordeal and said that the hospital staff put fire in his eyes. He lamented about the whole thing as we waited to be discharged. What was sad, is that's how his eyes felt. Like fire. And for the rest of the evening, they still urgently burned with regularity.
Meanwhile, I was unable to reach his father through text or call. I only tried to call once earlier, and had only sent a few texts. I also emailed while at the ER as an update, even though a call should be enough.
We were finally released and we went straight to CVS to fill his prescription. He had some medicine which kicked in by the time we got to the Pharmacy, so he was feeling rather active.
At this point, I knew we needed to eat and he needed his medicine. It had been a strange day. And emotionally on my internal back-burner, I was frustrated that it was literally impossible to reach his father during a time of need and emergency. I was weary of being a mom and a dad in one. And I usually never refer to myself as such, but times like yesterday really made me feel it more than usual.
So with this in mind, we waited some more, for meds. Caleb was active, but patient. He was inquisitive over everything during the entire day, as usual. During our wait, I encountered ladies who smiled upon this mother and her wound up son. They seemed to have either had children, or worked with them. One lady who stood behind me offered to get a medicine that I had looked for but could not find, and was now at the cash register. She said she was well aware of the location, having frequented that aisle being a mom herself.
She brought it over to me and as she watched us, said, "You're doing a good job. I hear you putting the boundaries on him . Setting up limitations". She doesn't know how this nearly conjured up tears for me. I am pretty chill and take things as they come. I'm really not super emotional. So it felt noteworthy that I would feel this. But it made sense. Because I was and sometimes am, weary. Weary of being mom and dad to this child. Glad for it, because he is by far worth the sacrifice and the toil, but still, I understand so much how a partner in this would be relieving at times. And there is no such thing for us.
Though I can never stop saying enough how grateful I am to have the friends and family we do, it does not change the fact that I am mom and dad. And his actual dad, is nowhere to be seen or heard from most of the time. It is literally impossible to reach him during emergencies. And birthdays. And most any time, really.
I want it to be understood that I do not often talk about his dad like this. It is what it is. And while it disappoints me that this is the consistent behavior my son must be exposed to, discussing it here is not helpful. So I share this here because it's just informative as part of the experience that we had on Sunday. Having my son screaming in this way as he did when that detergent coated his eyes, was discombobulating, and being unable to reach his father whom I still have not heard a word from about this, is disturbing. By the end of the day, I was physically tired with rocking and holding and forcing irrigation and doing all of the things I did with my big boy during his rough day. There was no where else I would have been in the world. But I was physically tired, and emotionally a bit distressed over his absent father and my poor little guy feeling what he did that day. It's a scary thing, not knowing what is happening to you. It's a scary thing, being held down and flushed out and taken for tests and everything. I understand. But everything that is done is because it needs to be. So yes, of course I do it.
I stayed home with him the next day because his eyes were too sensitive to light. He's doing better, and is at school today but mostly in the shade and indoors. Though, he would really rather not be slowed down. :)