|That's dried blood on her forehead, not a bruise, although there is bruising beneath the eye|
Laurel was stepping down out of the car at preschool this morning when her foot skidded on the wet threshold of the car door. But one arm was entangled in her carseat strap, so when she slipped, she couldn't grab anything to save herself; instead she pitched forward so she was falling head first and slammed her face into the side of the car. Unfortunately she hit directly on a 90-degree corner, the edge of the recessed area where the car door fits.
There was a lot of blood, but I pressed a clean tissue against the wound and we proceed across the parking lot toward school. I figured I could wash it out there, put a bandage on it, and assess the situation. But after we walked for a minute I paused to take another look, and I could see that she was going to need to be sutured. There wasn't a dent or a missing piece of flesh in the middle -- there was just a deep cut with gaping edges I could push back into place.
So we turned around, went back to the car, and drove a few blocks to the pediatrician's office.
She did get stitches there, which was an unpleasant experience for everyone, but at least we didn't have to go to the emergency department. They strapped her down in a velcro papoose, the nurse held her head steady, and the doctor gave her multiple lidocaine injections directly into her wound. That was the worst part, and Laurel screamed quite a bit. Then after the painkiller took effect, the doctor sutured the wound closed; I think there were four stitches in all. The suturing hurt and Laurel didn't like it either, but although she cried and howled, it clearly wasn't as bad as the shots.
Then she hugged the doctor, collected a huge number of prizes from the nurse, went back to preschool, and played happily!
- - - - -
Why "traditional birthday injury," you may ask? On Laurel's first birthday everything was okay, but on her second birthday she fell off a chair and bit her lip badly enough that we took her to pediatric urgent care. And last year on her third birthday she was extremely sick with the flu, so dehydrated that a few days later she ended up being hospitalized for three days.
- - - - -
Across her cheekbone you can clearly see the scar from a previously-sutured wound, the one she got when she slipped in the bathroom while doing a "scary dance" in the dark. You can find out more about it in this post from September.