The benefit of doubt is preceded by maternal panic…

J was so happy when he got home today that it was quite a sight to behold.  He was smiling…beaming, in fact.  He was full of energy and happiness, and I even texted TGG to tell him “whoa, dude, your brother is absurdly happy.”  I even e-mailed Dada, and texted his teacher asking “WHAT happened at school today that he’s so gosh darned happy????”

Half an hour later I went to get him for his snack.  He was sitting on his bed, halfway through changing his clothes, and he announced HURT.  I looked at his forehead and realized that, atypically enough, it was the LEFT side that was red and abraded.  “What happened?????”  He said HURT again, and pointed to the Neosporin and Band-Aids.  I asked him if he was OK, and he said OK.

It’s never good when your kid will just repeat what you’re saying when you’re looking for answers, but this time I sort of calmly panicked.  How does one calmly panic?  One allows one’s mind to gallop uncontrollably as one tends to J’s forehead.  To say that he looks like Shirley Temple’s dad in The Little Princess when he is in the hospital after returning from the Siege of Mafeking is an understatement.  His whole forehead is covered with Band-Aids…

When I was done with his forehead, J repeated -quite forcefully- the dreaded word HURT, and grabbed my hand to put it on his left ear.  The ear is slightly swollen, and there is an abrasion on the top where the ear is joined to the scalp.  The panic then set in with even more calm enveloping it…by then I was scanning the room to figure out if, perhaps, J had hit his head against a door frame because of a seizure.

I made him change clothes quickly, and led him downstairs to eat his snack.  I checked his pupils, and made him stick his tongue out.  He insisted on Neosporin on his ear.  I dashed downstairs to text his teacher (all the while cursing my habit of taking things to their proper place when he gets home) from the iPad.  I opened the Proloquo and asked him what had happened; he chose HURT, KICK, EAR, FOREHEAD.  Not good, of course.  I heard the messenger ring and I checked: J hit his forehead because another student was having a hard time and he was asked to leave the room with all other students.  Apparently it was bad enough that they could hear him next door.

Why I wasn’t told about this right off the bat, I can’t tell you.  At least I know now that it wasn’t a seizure and I don’t have to worry excessively, but you can bet your sweet butts that I am worried.  It’s never easy reducing the medication, but when you suddenly have an incident like this crop up well over a week after it’s been started, and he’s -presumably- leveled off…well…it shakes you.

J is sitting in his TV room, feeling better and armed with an ice pack that he applies to his ear and forehead as soon as I open the door.  He wants kisses.  He wants hugs.  He wants to make sure that, under no circumstances, I will deem this reason enough to keep him from going to school tomorrow.  I won’t.  I won’t keep him home, but I will make sure I check in during the day to see how he’s holding up.

I don’t think this was anyone’s fault.  I think we are all susceptible to triggers, and something influenced J’s behavior today.  He’s really fine…a little on the “I’m such a ham and I’m chewing the scenery when I realize I have an audience,” but only to the extent that it won’t interfere with going to school…

But, yeah, I totally panicked…and not just when I realized the Band-Aid Fairy hasn’t made a delivery this week.  I wonder what one has to put under one’s pillow to get more bandages???



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