The past couple of weeks I find myself being woken up with fear gripping every bit of me. At first when I would waken I couldn’t remember what would have me so terrified but the past few times it’s become more clear.
I’m having nightmares about Deeds burn.
It’s been almost exactly a year since it happened and while the nightmares are exaggerating it and adding new terrifying elements I’m realizing now how hard it was as a mother to have him go through that and have to watch him be in so much pain and subject him to the cleanings.
For those of you that might not know what I’m talking about here is a short version of the story.
On Deeds 3rd birthday he hadn’t eaten much so when he asked for some maccaroni and cheese Jeremy willingly went upstairs with him to make some. A short while later I heard Jeremy frantically yelling for me. I went upstairs and saw Deeds screaming with hot water and maccaroni noodles everywhere.
He was standing next to his dad watching the food cook. When Jeremy told him it was time to go sit down Deeds shirt caught the spoon on the pot and it pulled the entire contents of boiling water and noodles onto his head.
We rushed him into the bathroom and started using room temp water to ease the skin (thank goodness for that first aid course) but we got to his face and hands last since his abdomen and legs looked the worse at first. A long night at two hospitals involving an emergency ambulance transfer later our little guy ended up at the burn unit at the University of Utah. He woke up a few days later at home screaming with his eyes swollen shut. We had chosen to have him discharged when the doctors explained that with his special needs and resistance to the unfamiliar that he might heal better at home. If only we had known how bad the next couple days would be. Granted they were right, he was NOT sleeping or eating anything at the hospital, but the stress it put on Jeremy and I to take care of him has obviously taken its toll on me, even a year later. It was then and literally is now one of our worst nightmares.
With the burn we would have to pin him down two times a day and practically scrub the wounded areas. I pray to never hear my son screaming like that again… and we had to do it twice a day for weeks. It was horrifying when a full week after the burn we went to buzz his hair to make the cleaning easier and found an entire area of his scalp that hadn’t been treated that was burnt (and still doesn’t grow hair the same because of scar tissue). We were all covered in bruises and emotionally battered by the time things started to heal but it was all worth it when Deeds has healed so well thanks to the cleanings.
Here are a few before and after shots. The first two of the burn were from when his eyes were swollen shut before he could really open them again.
The healing really is amazing considering how bad it was. You would never know. Sometimes when he gets upset he will get bright red on only the side of his face that was burnt but we have been diligent about keeping the fresh skin out of the sun this past year. I look at him often and think about what a miracle he is. In so many ways we are blessed to see miracles happen when we feel like we have hit bottom.
I don’t know why I am all of a sudden having these nightmares. I guess it is to serve as a reminder to me as we approach the first anniversary of his burn that even the most cautious parents have bad things happen. The handle was turned, daddy was standing next to him…bad things still happened.
As a mother I wish I could have taken away all his pain. I wish he hadn’t had to go through that. While he still mentions it from time to time I pray it doesn’t haunt him like it does me.
Hopefully these nightmares will pass, I’m hoping that getting all this off my chest will help them to go away.
Love your babies. Hug them if they will let you. ALWAYS tell them you love them. They grow so fast and it’s the good memories you hope they take with them. Long after I’m gone I hope Deeds doesn’t look back and remember the pain from us taking care of him. I hope he remembers all the things we did that made him happy. I hope he remembers how much I love him. How much his daddy and I strive daily to help him grow and reach his full potential. How much he means to us. I guess that’s why I’m trying to make sure his Angry Birds birthday is a wonderful one. It will be good replace the memory of last year’s birthday, if not for him…. than for his dad and I.
We love you Jacob Diedrich. You will always be our miracle boy.