So today's pictures (did I mention how astonished I am that I am able to upload pictures without tech support?) actually relate to the subject matter.
Madeleine, our oldest and most horse-obsessed daughter, has two broken arms. Two casts. Twice the bragging rights, as our EMT neighbor put it. This is not exactly a comforting thought for a parent, but it has cheered up the 8-year-old. My dad asked if M was "milking it," and I have to say, no, she's a complete pill. Her first question of the doctor was how "they" take casts off. The doctor thought she was showing interest in medical procedure, but of course it's been too long since he was parenting a wily daredevil. I think, so far, she's afraid to consider sawing or cutting. But she has been talking a lot about atrophy, and whether she can shrink her arms enough to simply slip the casts off like gloves.
At school they are making paper mache puppets. M had to wear unwieldy plastic gloves and her perfectionist nature was not pleased with the results or the process. She swindled the PE teacher into letting her play and of course, off-balance, bloodied her elbow and knee on the first day back to school. Bathing (a daily necessity for even the smallest and stinkiest members of our mini farm) requires extreme flexibility and strength of Biblical proportions, as she has to hold both her arms above her head for the nearly the entire process. Wardrobe is a consideration, as well. We are all learning patience, or trying to.
So today I am thinking about the price of passion. Do we get back on the horse? And I know it could have been a bike, or a tree, or gymnastics, or any number of household mishaps. Another mom at school told of how her child broke an arm falling off the kitchen counter.
I may not have detailed here the fact that I myself have been horse crazy most of my life. I never sustained any injuries as a child, however; I was very cautious. Even in jumping I didn't take risks, didn't push myself or the horse. But this last spring I was trail riding with friends when I got dumped twice in 15 minutes (bad stirrup leathers: never take a new-to-you saddle on Man From Snowy River ride). The first fall ended in concussion. The second ended in a broken tailbone and a 4x4 ambulance ride.
So now it's my baby hurting and hurt. Ryan would like to discuss whether we need to have horses. I would like to consider whether we need to have risks, need to leave the house at all. Gracie (the baby) was wounded by the neighbor's banty rooster just two weeks ago. Sarah loses her glasses or her balance just about every day while cruising the property. Our friends' son was hit by a car while leaving middle school football practice. It took him months to recover, to get back to playing sports, and just last week he broke another boy's collarbone in a legitimate tackle. This parenting/protecting thing turns out to be pretty complicated.