Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Importance of Helmets

Good Morning!  I'm sorry I haven't posted for a couple of days, and had actually planned on taking a few more days off this week before I got back to work, but today's post sort of wrote itself.  Things with my hips/back really came to a head over the weekend and I am trying, or should I say not having a choice, but  to slow down drastically.
You know, usually I know when something is wrong with one of my kids.  The only excuse I can come up with is this drug induced stupor I am in.  Yesterday, my oldest son Thomas got up to go to school and got in the shower, he suddenly felt ill and had to hop out to vomit.  He continued to be sick off and on throughout the day but had no other symptoms.  We had finally gotten him to hold down some 7Up and he was feeling a little stronger and wanted to help me out so he went to drop off his brother at a basketball game.
Nathan called to check in and said that they were almost at the school and everything was fine, mostly they were calling to check on me (BTW, I was in the ER Monday for my hips/back so they have all been very concerned, to say the least).  It seemed like only minutes later that I got a call from Thomas to come and pick him and his little sister up because he was not feeling right.  His words did not sound right and he said that his arms and legs felt funny.
As I was driving at 60 mph down my mountain road I was debating whether to call 911 or not, but in a town like ours with a volunteer fire department, I knew that I could get to him just as fast to assess the situation and not scare Isabella to death in the process.  When I got there (after calling and checking on them multiple times) Thomas seemed stabilized and had the feeling back in all of his extremities and was talking normally again.  Thanks to my background with brain problems, I know neurological symptoms when I see them and immediately started gently questioning Thomas about everything he had done in the past couple of days.  Including the most difficult of all questions for parents to ask, drugs.  That is when we remembered that he had taken a very bad fall on Saturday when he was snowboarding; bad enough that his helmet strap had cut his chin.
I immediately called Kaiser to let them know we were headed down the mountain and they advised me where to take him.  Too bad it was the wrong clinic, but the doctor was very nice, helped us figure out which hospital would be closest and told us she'd help us try to get our co-pay back.  So, we headed to a hospital that not more than a year ago I had filed a formal complaint with after I went to visit my Grandpa and was very unimpressed with the overly rude staff.
But, I digress, Thomas was immediately taken to a cat scan (do you think cats get cat scans?) and the doctor came to visit with Isabella and I.  If  anything at all showed up on his scan they were going to have to keep him and possibly do emergency surgery.  I FREAKED.  Blessedly, my boy only has a bad concussion and we were all able to come home.
The oh so important point I am trying to make is that if Thomas had not had his helmet on he could have, strike that, would have died.  He was the only one of his friends that day that was wearing one and most of the times that is the case.  He says that sometimes his friends put them on when they are doing "dangerous" stuff in the big terrain parks.  My kids have asked me time and again if they have to wear their helmets.  "Aaww, come on Mom, none of my friends wear their helmets" is something I have heard a million times, but I just very calmly say, if you want to ski/board, you wear your helmet, period.  Now that Thomas is driving, I could only hope and pray that he was still following the rule, but to have laid the groundwork was all I could do.  So, please people, buckle up your kids, make them wear helmets when it is appropriate and by all means go give them an extra squeeze today!


lfhpueblo said...

Yep, wear those helmets, because you never know what can happen.
My husband drives a motorcycle and there's no helmet law in our state, but I still make him wear one along with all the other protective gear.
I saw a guy one time in the hospital with no toes and a severe brain injury from riding a motorcycle with flip flops on and no helmet.

Daisy said...

Absolutely. My parents rode motorcycles - a lot! Never would they ride helmetless, and my brother and I adopted the same attitude. Wear it. Helmets are not optional.

Amy Byrne said...

We are so happy that he is okay. Let us know if you need anything.

Amy and David

Joe said...

Sorry kiddo I have not been keeping up with something I enjoy as well that is your blog. So was behind on all the troubles you have been having. Remember that bad times and black clouds always eventually become good times with the support of family and friends. The sky always returns to the beautiful clear blue especially where you guy leave. So until better times and blue skys do what you must to make all well again. Cousin Joe