Monday, July 14, 2008

An Eventful Visit to the Park

Saturday, we decided to take the kids to the park. We chose a park in another city (20-25 minutes away) that I discovered not too long ago but hadn't been to before. It had everything you could want: lots of grass, plenty of shade trees, plenty of picnic tables, barbeques, a cool play structure, a swimming lake complete with a beach, a pier/dock for jumping into the deep swimming section or fishing on the other side, and a concession stand.

We only stayed for about two hours but they were an eventful two hours to say the least. First of all, we ended up meeting and talking with a sweet young single mom spending the day with her young son. We enjoyed talking with her for a good portion of our time there. That was the good part but then the unexpected happened.

I was walking around the huge play structure. I was curious to see all that there was to do and was checking on my kids at the same time. Then I saw him. A young boy, crying, in pain. I headed over to make sure he was ok. And that was when I saw the blood and lots of it. He seemed somewhat disoriented so I bent down and said, "Let's go find your mom." I had no clue where she was but decided that forward momentum in any direction would be a good thing. I was hoping that if I got him started, he would head for his mom. It ended up that I started in the right direction and his mom saw us immediately. I explained that he got hurt and turned him over to her. As she placed a towel on his head, I headed over to my blanket, about 20 feet away, to grab my baby wipes. I wadded up baby wipe and handed it to mom to use to apply pressure more directly to his head wound than the large towel could. Meanwhile, I worked on cleaning up the blood that had run all down his face, head, neck, chest, and back. I wanted to clean him up for two reasons; to prevent panic on both his part and others and to help determine where, if any, other wounds were. There were just too much blood to tell. I got him cleaned up enough to see no immediate issues other than the back of his head and nose so I switched to helping him pinch his nose as he was having trouble doing. It didn't take long to get the head wound clotted; it didn't appear serious and wouldn't need stitches. So, we focused on getting his nose to stop bleeding. It turns out that the lady we had met earlier a nursing student. She came to help out and checked his head wound. She also provided the new wisdom on stopping a bleeding nose; to pinch and hold your head forward rather than backward. (I didn't know that as I have never gotten a blood nose in my life.) His nose finally quit bleeing so I went back to helping to clean him up the rest of the way while his mom held him. Just as I was working on cleaning up his lips to check his lips and mouth, he sneezed about 5 times which cleared out his nose but started it bleeding again so back to that. Finally, we got everything stopped. The nursing student gave the suggestion to keep on eye on him for signs of concussion and we all went back to enjoying our day. Later, the boy would be seen playing like nothing had happened.

Then, a while later as we sat on our blanket with Josh watching Mika and Sammy play, a little girl who appeared to be around 4 years old came up to me and asked me if I knew where her mom was. She seemed lost so I immediately went to work asking her where she was sitting. She didn't know. So, I started questioning her. Is your mom sitting at a picnic table? What is she wearing? What color is her shirt? What color is her pants? Are you here for a party? What kind of party? I took her by the hand and, together, we set out to find her mommy. After making our way around completely around the play area, I headed back towards my blanket intent on visiting the larger parties a bit further from the playground. It was then that she mummbled something about a baby party and I saw some baby presents very close to where I had been sitting so we headed back there. As we got to the party area, the grandmother addressed the girl so I knew we had found her place. The grandmother told the girl to not wander off again so I explained to her that she seemed lost because she asked where her mom was. It turned out that grandmother was in charge and mom wasn't even at the park yet.

Around this time, my son wanted to visit the beach and go play in the water so we picked up and moved. We got the beach, laid our blanket down, and I started to switch Josh's diaper to a swim diaper. Just after doing that, the lifeguards ordered everyone out of the water. Confused, everyone got out and watched as the lifeguards, arm in arm, started sweeping the water looking for a lost child assumed to have disappeared in the water. It was quite shocking to think that a child may have drowned while we were there. A couple of minutes later, a police officer came up and told the lifeguards that the child had been found. What a relief!

At that time, we decided it was time to go. We'd come back to swim another day. Besides I had a car to pick up from the shop.

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Brumbemom said...

Oh my goodness, that sounds like quite a day. I would have been "freaking" out when they started combing the water. The other stuff, I probably could have handled, but not the searching for a child's body. That must have been upsetting.

Anonymous said...

Wow! That sounds like an eventful day. I'm so glad that child was found but how terrifying.