Dustin broke his arm.
Three weeks ago, on my birthday actually, March 13th, he jumped off my sister's couch and BLAMO! He broke his humerus at the base of the elbow completely through.
There is nothing worse than seeing your child in pain. I literally get sick to my stomach watching my child cry and squirm in real pain-pain I can't do anything about.
The truth is Dustin's broken arm scared me half to death. When it happened I didn't know what in the world was going on. I knew my son was in agony. I knew that it was serious. I knew he needed my help. But I never felt more helpless...
Well, actually, I have felt more helpless. Seeing my son in pain reminded me of how helpless I really am. When my girls were in their incubators I just stood looking in at their tiny, sick little bodies completely powerless to do anything to help them. We had the best doctors and we live in the most medically advanced country in the world. I prayed morning, noon, and night. I cried and I begged. But at the end of it all it was never up to me, it was never in my control, and I had to let them go.
When Dustin broke his arm I had that moment of dread, that second of please God don't take another one. THE FEAR. You know what I am talking about. Once I realized he was just in a lot of pain but he wasn't going to die I calmed down a bit. But the thought has not left me-what would I do if I lost another child?
The truth is I don't know.
And I don't want to know.
Sitting in the ER with Dustin was heartbreaking. The ER is always a hurry up and wait scenario. It wan't a busy night and we were not umpteenth in in line, but nonetheless it seemed like forever until Dustin received medicine for his pain.
While we waited he kept telling me with tears in his eyes, "I wish I NEVER jumped off the couch Mom, I really wish I never did it." My heart ached as I watched my little guy fight his tears and feel the crushing pain of regret for the first time in his life. I would have given anything to rewind time or take the pain away because I know he didn't intend to break his arm, but the only thing I could do was be there for him as he endured it. I hurt for him and I hurt with him. But ultimately the pain was his to bare.
Finally the nurse came in with some pain medicine and within ten minutes Dustin fell asleep. He stayed asleep through x-rays and I watched him on the table finally at peace. I worried it would be temporary but I was glad for it how ever long it lasted. I paced and prayed and took a lot of deep breaths all the time telling God thank you that it was just a broken arm.
After loosing children a broken arm feels like a gift. And what felt to Dustin like the worst thing imaginable was to me simply a side effect of being a boy. I knew he'd recover. I knew he'd be ok. And I knew it probably wouldn't be the last time in the emergency room.
To make a long story short Dustin spent three days in a splint until he was able to get surgery on his arm. Two pins were needed to reset his bone and he was put into a cast that comes off tomorrow. The day he broke his arm was rough as were the few days following his surgery, but overall he seems un-phased.
I think I have been more effected by his broken arm than he was. I doubt he has lost sleep thinking about how God works through all things-even broken arms- for our good and His glory or has wrestled with the fear and mistrust residue still present since Aubrey and Ellie's deaths. He has not had to face his limitations as a mother yet again nor struggle with trusting God to be limitless where I am not.
A broken arm is tough for a kid, but I think being the mother of a kid with a broken arm is tougher.
How must it be for God being the Father of all of us?
I often forget that just because I am a mom does not mean I have stopped being a child of God. Just like Dustin's pain is my pain, my pain is His pain-God hurts when I hurt. The difference is God can actually do something about the pain. He can impart his grace and mercy on our lives and make us whole. Where we are powerless he is powerful. And his will is always perfect.
Dustin's arm is healing, the memory of the pain is fading, and I am recovering from being scared half to death by something that turned out not to be life threatening. I am letting God deal with my hypersensitivity and in the meantime I am enjoying getting one armed hugs from my blue-casted 6 year old who has already forgotten just how disastrous jumping off a couch can be.
I guess that is what moms are for...