Saturday, August 6, 2011

I've Got This: Memories of Mom & Trips to the ER

"Momma, it's a real emergency", said kid number 4 with not a lot of concern in her voice.

I'm fortunate that at a couple places I work I can bring my kids with me. But, they know do not interrupt class while I'm teaching for any reason except a real emergency.

Even so, when she walked into my Tuesday night yoga class, I wasn't immediately concerned. She wasn't crying and there was no blood on her. In fact I think my first response was "this better be a real emergency."

I'm not an uncaring or blase mom. But I am a mom with six kids and have been through my fair share of kid emergencies. In fact, I'm completely confident I can set a broken bone or diagnose general maladies all by myself.

So when I heard that kid number 5 had cut his leg my first response was oh just tell him to come here.

"No, he can't. The lifeguard has him laying down and is trying to stop the bleeding."


So with the love and well wishes of my class who were still holding Utthita Trikonasana, I ran out to the pool deck. Oh yeah, sure enough, his leg was cut pretty deep and the lifeguard was trying to stop the bleeding.

As I scooped him up into my arms to get him to the car and begin our trek to the hospital, the lifeguard asked if I wanted him to carry my son out. One of the other lifeguards, one who has watched my kids grow up and knows that this isn't our first time heading off to the ER, stopped him and said "She's got this."

Oh yeah, I've got this.

I'm very grateful for the nursery workers, fitness staff, teachers and friends who have helped me raise six good kids. But sometimes no one else can take the place of mom.

As I sat in the ER with him waiting on his stitches, I told him the story of when I had to get 54 stitches in my hand. This is absolutely a true story with no embellishment.

I was about 14 years old and "in charge" while my mom was at work. However, my disobedient younger sister wouldn't respect my authority as the older, wiser sibling. So when she refused to pick up her banana peel off the front lawn I tried to follow her inside to reason with her non-violently. Instead she slammed the door in my face and my hand went through the glass window causing me 54 stitches just weeks before my twirling debut in marching band.

It was all very traumatic at the time.

As I shared this memory with my sister, we both remembered our neighbor putting a dirty washcloth over my hand to stop the bleeding. Just at the time this neighbor was suggesting we pour peroxide into my open gaping wound, my mom's car flew onto our street and she ran up to the house.

"I've got this," she said as she gathered me up and into the car on the way to the ER.

How odd to be thinking about my mom as I sit with my son in the emergency room. Although, really, I guess I'm remembering the times when I was scared and hurt and by simply saying "I've got this" mom was able to calm me down and convince me it was going to be OK.

The next day my oldest daughter, kid #4 who first reported the real emergency and is all of 10 years old herself, asked me if I was freaked out when I saw how deep his cut was. No, I told her. It's a moms job to stay calm in an emergency.

And someday- in a long, long time from now, it will be her turn to scoop up her child and whisper in his ear "I've got this."

This picture is about 5 years old, but it's still
my favorite of me and my bunch.


  1. i seriously dont know how you do it!! you are super mom my friend!

  2. Some mothers are truly incredible creatures. I don't know how they do it but thank you for doing your best to raise good children.