Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Feeling Helpless as a Mother

My oldest is going to turn 12 this weekend.  I think life is trying to make his last few days as an 11-year-old way too memorable.

First on Monday, I lost him- wrote about that here.

Then yesterday... yesterday was even worse.

Yesterday my daughter was going on a 4th grade field trip to one of the California Missions.  As soon as I heard about it I sent a note into the teacher saying I would love to chaperone.  Growing up in Illinois, learning about the missions was never part of my school curriculum.

I got to the school only to realize I had left my cell phone in my car.  I hurried back up the hill where I was parked and got my phone before it was time to leave for the field trip.  I loaded on a bus with a whole group of fourth graders, sitting with one of the other chaperons as Alex was sitting with her best friend.   While on the bus I got a call, the number seemed familiar like it might be from the school.  I knew there was no way I would be able to hear the call, driving down the highway with windows down and a bus full of kids so I let it go to my voicemail.

A minute later there was a beep letting me know a voicemail (VM) had been left.  I tried to listen to it, couldn't hear a thing.  Thankfully the new iPhone software transcribes your VM, so I was able to read it.

The message was from the health care nurse, stating that Lucas was in an incident during PE but that  he's okay but she wanted to run everything by me so I was was aware of what was going on.

I began to worry of course, but felt like everything would be fine based on her message.  I forwarded the message to Eric, telling him I couldn't call back at the moment since I was on the bus but would call when I got off.  I figured Eric would not be able to call back at the time either as he was in an interview with his company bidding on a job and that is a time he is usually totally unreachable.

As soon as we made it to the mission and I was off the bus I gave her a call back.  She said they had been playing tag in PE and that a big group of them ran into each other.  She said the Lucas had a large bump over his eye and was complaining about not being able to see really well.  She said that he was really upset and lay in the health care office for about a half hour but was now back in class.  She said she told him if continued to not feel well to definitely to come back.

We began our tour of the mission, we were at the San Juan Capistrano mission, it is beautiful!
Me and my girl on field trip

  We learned some history and the kids got to make their own little adobe bricks.
making adobe bricks
 About 45 minutes after I called the health office back I got another call.  Lucas was back in the office and was saying he felt nauseous and they thought it would be best if he went home and rested.

Now was where the major dilemma came in, I was a hour away from home on a field trip which I had rode on the bus to get to.  I had no way to get to the school.  Eric was in a meeting and unreachable until it ended.  I asked them to call my emergency contacts.  While the office was was calling one of my contacts I also texted her asking if she would be able to get Lucas and if he would be able to just come lay down at her house for a while.   I got a call back from the office saying they couldn't reach any of my contacts and they really felt like Lucas' needed to go home.  I called my emergency contact knowing she sometimes responds to texts more slowly.  She said she just got the call from the school but had let it go to VM.  She was just on her way into the grade school to help in her kids' class, but said she would let them know she couldn't come and then go get Lucas.

Thank goodness for good friends. I felt bad that this was messing up her plans and she would have to just watch Lucas. I called the school back letting them know that I had just reached my contact and she was on her way.   They told me that Lucas had now thrown up and that they were going to be calling 911 to have him transported to the ER.

Things went fast and crazy from here.  I called my contact letting her know what was happening, she said she would go with Lucas to the ER, I gave my approval for her to go with him to the ER.  I called Eric, thankfully he had just come out of his meeting and had been reading my texts and said he would head right over to the ER.  An ambulance showed up and Lucas was transported to the ER, my contact had to drive her car behind the ambulance.
At the ER

All the while I was stuck on this field trip far from home.  I went through the motions trying to be a good chaperon and enjoy the trip as I knew there was nothing I could do.  My contact and Eric texted me updates.
San Juan Capistrano

In the end the doctor said he had a mild concussion at best and everything should be fine and he was discharged.  He and Eric ended up arriving home a few minutes before I got home after the school field trip.

He spent the rest of the day just laying around very worn out, even with a slight fever in the evening. He seems to be doing okay this morning but I am keeping him home from school just to be safe and doctor's orders anyway.

It was awful as a mom, feeling so helpless, not being able to be there for him.  I am so grateful for a wonderful friend that dropped everything and was able to be there with him until Eric was able to arrive.   They say that things come in three's- well Sunday night he accidentally cut his finger a little while chopping potatoes, so we are done right?  Let's just get him to his 12th birthday please!


  1. Lordy, you are having quite the week! Glad he's doing better and it wasn't serious.

    1. I know! Hopefully the rest of the week is much more calm. And yes he seems to be doing great