The Oral Report

Standing up in front of the class was never so much fun!

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Location: River City, United States

The rantings and ravings of a mom of three wonderful girls as she finds new love while working like a dog and shaking her fist at the system. You know. Pretty much like everybody else.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Flashback Friday!

Well, gang, here we are again. Another Friday. Another Flashback. If only I'd take my meds and spare us all. But, that's not gonna happen. At least not today. (You probably shouldn't count on it next week, either.) So, here goes another tale from the ever abundant Mom-Story Bank.

It starts on a gorgeous summer Sunday. Or maybe it was all because of a gorgeous summer Sunday. Upper 70's, with none of the usual humidity that we see around here. At the time, I was a mom of two (with little bit being years away from conception), and those two were playing together in the backyard. The house we lived in then (roughly ten years ago, I believe) was a tiny little thing, but it had a WONDERFUL yard. A nice-sized front yard with a row of mature burning bush alongside the creek, a couple flower beds up near the house and a huge oak tree shading the yard. The back yard, though, was, in my opinion, perfect.

The backyard alone was twice the size of the house. With a round flower bed with a bird bath in the center. A swingset at the back against a privacy fence and a huge jungle gym (which we'd inherited from a public park when they demolished their playground) near a maple tree that was even larger than the oak out front. There was a tire swing hanging from the maple tree. And across the yard from the swing, sat a picnic table, nearby another flower bed. All of this, and there was still room to play ball and run and jump and do all the stuff kids do. I loved that backyard.

My older girls would have been 5 and 6 on this particular summer day. Foolish me, I was whiling away that beautiful day inside cleaning up the kitchen, watching for the kids out the window from time to time. They were climbing and swinging and enjoying the summer day. I took out the trash and walked around a little. The day was simply idyllic. And my neighbors seemed to notice as well. Everyone was outside. Walking dogs. Washing cars. Mowing grass. Just sitting outside. I looked up and down the street and every single house, as far as I could see in either direction, had some kind of activity going on outside.

I checked on the girls, once more, before going back inside to scrub toilets. Fricken Fracken housework!! They bade me a fond (and quite giggly) farewell and went back to their game. And I, reluctantly, went back to my game of "boring grown up stuff".

I was just finishing up cleaning the toilet, when the younger of my girls came rushing through the back door. "[Kid 1] is hurt! [Kid 1] is hurt!", she was screaming, as she went from room to room trying to find an adult. Now, I may not be the best mom, but I will say this, when one of mine is hurt, it's best that everyone stay out of the way. I went tearing out the back door to where I find my firstborn sitting on the bench of the picnic table. She's crying, but I don't see anything obvious. Kid 2 has caught up with me by this point. Dad is somewhere bringing up the rear. I ask what happened and am told that they were climbing on top of the picnic table and jumping off. On her last descent, my oldest caught the bench of the picnic table...between her legs.

Now, I'm not a doctor. Nor was I a physics major in college. But my mind started reeling through pictures of an airborn child, roughly 50 pounds, hitting a stationary and very solid piece of lumber squarely between her legs. And I didn't like the outcome. So I had her dad carry her inside and I removed her shorts and underpants and noticed blood in her panties. My "OMG" light came on, but I kept my composure. I explained to her that I needed to kind of check things and did a peripheral exam, but I couldn't see any abrasions, only blood. She was still bleeding.

And, being the mom that I am (when it comes to MY kids it's NEVER over-reacting!), I started thinking that she'd permanently damaged her reproductive system and would never be able to have children. I didn't SAY any of that. But I KNEW that's what it was.

As I got her dressed, I explained to my (then) husband, that we should take her to the hospital and get her checked. I couldn't see anything that should be bleeding and whispered that I wasn't sure what kind of internal injuries could have been sustained.

She was having some difficulty walking. It still hurt. So, her dad was carrying her to the car, and helping her in, as her younger sister and I made our way there as well. I was still imagining my daughter, all grown up, having to undergo surgeries to correct damage done by these injuries in order to have children.

It was at this point that one of the neighbor children, who lived two doors down, happened to see Kid 2 and, since they were pretty good buddies, he yelled down the street, "Where are you going?". We adults didn't pay much attention to him, we had other things on our mind, but we assumed that they'd catch up on the excitement later. Kid 2, however, responded in kind. Yelling down the street...on that beautiful summer Sunday...when ALL the neighbors were outside and it was quiet and calm..."[Kid 1] broke her weenie off and we're going to the hospital to get it fixed!"

Say it again.

[Kid 1] broke her weenie off and we're going to the hospital to get it fixed.

Uh huh. Two daughters = no weenies. I was under the impression that they already knew they didn't have weenies. How sadly mistaken I was.

Of course, all the neighbors, turned and gawked. Some, who had heard the exchange and knew I had daughters smiled a little. We, on the other hand, hurried things up, especially getting [Kid 2] into the car and shutting her up. She was grumbling...not knowing what she could have possibly done wrong. Her dad and I amused, but realizing that a serious talk was overdue.

We laugh, hyena-like, about it now. Referring to it as the day [Kid 1] broke her weenie off. But, that day, riding to the hospital, I explained (my ex was highly uncomfortable talking about such things) to both of our girls that female children didn't have weenies. And that [Kid 1] could not possibly have broken hers off. We talked about sexuality in terms that kindergartners could understand. And I think they got most of it. Though, we had more talks in the years to come, this one was the first.

It was, because of this, that our mood, when we arrived at the hospital, was somewhat lighter. And, perhaps, that should have been avoided. As my ex, sat in the emergency room waiting room with my younger daughter, I took my older daughter through the registration process. Explaining to the triage nurse what had happened and that I could not find any reason that she should be bleeding.

Before they even examined her, we were separated. The hospital staff advising me that this was necessary to rule out any possible sexual abuse. They took [Kid 1] back to a room, by herself, and questioned her about what happened. Simultaneously, I was questioned. Had I ever sexually molested my child? Had I ever inserted foreign objects into her vagina? Had my husband? And while I did not feel guilty, because I had never, and would never, do these things to my child, I had the strangest mixture of anger and fear. I hadn't been afraid to bring her to the hospital for help. But, what if they didn't believe me. What if they thought I had done something unspeakable to my child. And all the while that this was going on, they weren't examining her.

In the other room, they were asking her to give a detailed description of what had happened to cause her injury. In addition, they were asking her if her mother or father (or anyone else) had ever touched her inappropriately. If anyone had ever hurt her there. She was confused and afraid and I felt so bad for her.

While I realized that it was necessary for them to be asking these questions (though I hate that we, as a society, have MADE it necessary), I hated that my daughter was being put through it, and was gaining an education into child sexual abuse, that I would have given anything to have spared her. She'd had no idea that someone would have ever hurt her that way. And that innocence was stripped away that day.

After the interrogation, she was examined. And a small cut a little further up inside her was located. Stitches were not necessary, it was so small. There were no internal injuries. No permanent damage to her reproductive organs. Just a tiny little cut. I could have avoided all of the trauma she suffered at the hands of the hospital staff if only I'd seen the cut. Or if only I hadn't worried so much about it. But I am who I am.

It's just that that day...that beautiful summer Sunday...taught all of us a little something more about life. We each came away a little more worldly than we'd been the day before. (And, of course, all with a hint of a grin about [Kid 1]'s history-making weenie-ectomy.)



Blogger Opus P. Penguin said...

Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch again.

But Kind of makes me think about those little girls in Africa who have REAL "weenie-ectomies" inflicted upon them...

Damn, we're lucky.

4/07/2006 5:21 PM  
Blogger Opus P. Penguin said...

Wow, sorry. I didn't realize I'd been such a wet blanket on your comment thread. I must have been in a morbid mood yesterday. Just...feel free to ignore me...

4/08/2006 11:02 AM  
Anonymous supergirlfriend said...

LOL! Don't worry about it, Opus. De Nada!

4/08/2006 4:55 PM  
Blogger Praying for your Prodigal said...

Oh my goodness! I'm not sure what to say! Other than...a normal day in the life of a mom! Good job!

Fricken-fracken housework! I agree!


4/09/2006 3:58 PM  
Blogger Your Girl Friday said...

The same sort of thing happened to my little sister. She was horrified! Luckily she came out of it without any permanent damage... just a broken hymen. Poor thing.

4/10/2006 2:06 AM  
Blogger Your Girl Friday said...

Well... I guess that is permanent! But you know what I mean! Ugh!

Fricken-Fracken Mondays!

4/10/2006 2:07 AM  
Blogger Marci said...

I cringed reading and tightened up my legs....still cringing and tightening!! ugh ugh!!

That's funny though, I rarely overreact on the outside either. I go into robot mode.

4/10/2006 4:46 PM  

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