This wasn’t my planned post for this week but often life is what happens while you’re making plans. That’s certainly what happened last week.
It was a normal Wednesday with the children, the headache inducing music class followed by soft play and then back home for lunch. It was after lunch that my 2 year old daughter was on her way up the stairs for a nap, she got almost to the top and then turned around to pick something up that she had dropped. As she turned back she fell down the stairs. I watched in slow motion as her little body flipped head over heels continuously down the stairs, her head hitting every few steps and the banister on the way down, only stopping once her head had hit the sideboard at the bottom of the stairs. I screamed, I don’t know why, like screaming ‘No’ would somehow help her. She screamed, it was a small relief, it told me she was alive at least. A strange calmness then came over me as it often does in stressful situations. The more stressful the situation, the calmer I tend to be. Something takes over me and gets me through it.
She had a bump on her head but seemed to be unscathed everywhere else. Her screaming turned to silent shock, much worse than screaming. My son stayed in the dining room, too scared to come and see what had happened. He’s a sensitive soul so I wasn’t surprised. It all turned out fine, after a couple of hours in A&E we were sent home and I was told to keep a close eye on her. It amazed me that she could come out of this unhurt but the doctor said that at this age the body goes floppy (unlike adults who go rigid), which saved her from any broken bones, it was really only her head they were worried about.
So the dramatic day was gladly a bit of an anti-climax but that night I was still shaking. I still had that image fully engraved into my brain and the thought that my day could have ended so very differently. As she fell I believed that that, was the end, the end of my beautiful, cheeky, stubborn and incredibly clever little girl. The girl who’s two but truly believes she is four like her big brother.
I think these things happen to remind us to appreciate what we have, to remind us that life can change in the blink of an eyelid, that life is short. This is the third incident this year that has truly knocked me for six. The first was my mum being hit by a car earlier in the year, I still remember the feeling when my auntie called to tell me. She was incredibly lucky and came away with cracked ribs and stitches in her face but if the driver had been going just 10mph faster things would be so different now. When it happened I realised that I couldn’t even remember telling my mum how much I love her, how she’s like one of my best friends who I can talk to about anything. She is not a particularly affectionate person and apart from with my children or husband, I have to say it doesn’t come easy to me either. That doesn’t mean that we don’t care, I care a great deal about the people in my life and while my mum shows her love with her baking, I show mine by just being there and always lending a helping hand when I can. I hope that people know that I care but perhaps I need to tell them more often, maybe we all do.
The second incident was my husband crashing his car at high speed on an A road, only saved by the fact that it was late at night and there were no other cars on the road. I felt physically sick the next day and had to hold back the tears looking at his damaged car that had been towed back. Is someone trying to tell me something or is everyone around me just incredibly unlucky…..