It is 2:35 Friday morning and I am waiting for a follow up phone call from Second Son. You may remember we just dropped him off at Rice University for his freshman year. This week has been freshman week with lots of orientation and social activities to make the freshmen feel at home. My son was part of a group that decided to take a nighttime visit to Galveston Beach. While frolicking in the waves he managed to impale his big toe on a crab claw. He is now sitting in the local emergency room waiting to have the claw extricated from his toe.
As a mother I want to be there so badly. As the doctor in the family I have always supervised any medical treatment. But as a doctor I know this really isn’t a big deal. The claw is barbed so it will be a simple matter of enlarging the wound enough to free the claw. Second Son will be walking with a limp for a few days but should be fine shortly and can enjoy the notoriety of being the freshman who ended up in the ER.
Of course, now that I know Second Son is really okay, my mind is calculating the pain it will be to handle the hospital billing. As a military family we have Tricare Prime. This is an out of area emergency room visit. When we were out of area and my daughter broke her arm, it took two years to get the billing straightened out. I am girding my loins for the bureaucratic nightmare.
I guess I will wait for the follow up call and say a prayer of thanksgiving that Second Son is going to be fine. It is just a crab claw, not a shark bite. This is part of the letting go process. He has to handle these little crises without my direct intervention. But I can still pray. So Dear Guardian Angel, please stay by his side until he is tucked into his bed safe and sound. I can’t be there so it is up to you.
UPDATE: Didn't hear anything until 6:45 this morning. (talk about no sleep!) Second Son waited for about 5 1/2 hours in the ER before being seen. Once the toe was numbed up they pulled out the offending object. It turned out to be the barb from a stingray, not a crab claw! He has a sore toe but is able to get a shoe on and walk around. He doesn't understand why this was so stressful for his father and me. Just wait until he has kids of his own!