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04/24/07 13:05:05 - Gimme a break... no... WAIT!!!

Aren had been spending a lot of time at home. Between all of his random sicknesses and spring break, MaryBeth was getting rather exasperated. Apparently, though, she had said the words “Give me a break” a few too many times. Stupid cosmic sense of humor.
It’s been kind of a rough month for us. And when I say “us”, I really mean Aren and MaryBeth. Last month Aren had Spring Break. He was very excited for the opportunity to not go to school, and MaryBeth was excited to spend some time with him – for the first couple of days, anyway. By the end of the week, we were ready to send him back.

So, Monday morning comes along, but Aren was suddenly feeling “sick”. Ordinarily, we would look seriously at this, but he had been expressing his reservations about going back to school already, so we took it with a grain of salt and sent him back. He came home from school that day exhausted, and even went to bed early. The next morning, before we could get him out the door, he managed to throw up. So, we kept him home that day. And the next, and the next.

In fact, he didn’t get back to school until the next Tuesday. He had held his food down and the rest of his GI tract seemed to be under control, so we kicked him out the door. We did notice a small rash on his cheek, but figured that he had slept just right to give himself a little raspberry.

The next day, his “raspberry” was worse, but we chalked it up to eczema and sent him into school. At about 10:00, MaryBeth got a call from Sandy, the school nurse. She asked if we had seen his face, and MaryBeth explained her theory on it. Sandy went on to explain that in her opinion, especially with Aren’s background, it may be shingles and that we should pull him out of school until we know for sure. The next day, it was worse, and his doctor confirmed that it was definitely shingles. Aren was put on an antiviral medication and had to stay home until the blisters were all scabbed over.

By the next Wednesday, he looked like he was in the clear, so he got to go back to school again. Everything was looking up. On Thursday, we had arranged for me to get off work early and pick him up from school. As I was walking out of the gate, however, someone called to me and asked if I had gotten the message from MaryBeth – “The one about your son breaking his leg”.

The first thought through my head was, “Wow. That’s a pretty old message. He broke his leg six months ago”. Then it dawned on me that it wouldn’t make sense to relay that message unless they had just received it. I finally reached MaryBeth, who explained that a few minutes earlier, she had received a call from the school explaining that they had called 911 and she needed to get there as soon as she could.

Apparently, Aren was playing kickball at school, slipped and somehow wound up breaking his leg – again. It was his right leg, the same leg that he broke before, but it was a different bone this time. Somehow, in his slip, he had managed to break his femur. Just to put things in perspective, most people who break their legs do so from falling out of a tree or being hit by a car. Not my boy, though. He just doesn’t do anything halfway. By the time MaryBeth got there, the paramedics had arrived and were trying to start an IV so they could give him some morphine. They had decided that it would be best to give him some pain meds before trying to move him. I don’t usually make a habit of second-guessing emergency responders, and this didn’t sound like the time to start, since his right ankle was literally behind his right ear. And it wasn’t because he was doing yoga.

Eventually they got the morphine into him and got him to the hospital. Within a short time, they had x-rayed his leg and sure enough, his femur was broken almost exactly halfway up. On the plus side, it was still mostly aligned, but the break was still bad enough that it would need surgery. They ended up flying us up to Tucson (my second time escorting a child in a helicopter), and Aren was scheduled for surgery the next morning.

What is in Aren's leg?
Dr. Goode, Aren’s surgeon, explained that rather than using traction or external pins, like they used to, they would instead insert some rather thick wires into the hollow part of his femur. (Think of a wire clothes hanger, and you’ve about got the right idea.) The surgery was completed and everything looked good, so we were able to go home Saturday afternoon. We had been in the hospital for less than 48 hours, which I think is a record for our family. Aren, however, was still in quite a bit of pain, so we kept him pretty heavily medicated for the next week or so. By Thursday, he was once again doing well enough to go to school, so he’s been going back ever since.

As with all stories, there are more details to this one, which I will include in future posts, but that covers everything pretty much. The moral? Be careful what you ask for. Apparently, some idioms don’t translate well into Cosmic thought. So, please. No more “breaks”.

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George Fleming wrote:
Hi, It's George from New York. I'm so sorry you've all been going through this. I've had a couple of rough months with my father who is elderly and has been sick. He moved in with me and I haven't been checking the website. I hope all is well, other than of course all you've been going through with Aren's break. Keep in touch. I'd love to arrange to talk with you and perhaps Aren. with love & best wishes, George
09/05 12:35:14

Tom Harper wrote:
You know we love you guys and we appreciate your strength, it helps us with our small problems and trials. Keep us updated, love ya. Tom & Jo
10/05 11:37:33

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