Monday, December 21, 2009

on teeth



leon loves his little haba blocks, which stephanie gave him. he particularly enjoys putting them in his mouth. the other day i thought to myself, hmm, it's rarely a good idea to run/crawl with something in your mouth. maybe it's because i knocked out my front tooth when i was 10, but you won't find me walking about with a lollipop, spoon, or anything else in my mouth. i'm very protective about my remaining teeth.

this thought of keeping small, hard gummable objects away from leon came and went that day. after all, he loves playing with them.

today while i was uploading videos onto the computer, leon played at my feet. he had a small block in his mouth and was crawling around like a little puppy, which i find to be very endearing. all of a sudden he falls flat on his face. or mouth, rather.

accustomed to all sorts of bumps and falls, i calmly kneel down and pick him up. he's bawling, bright red, tears flowing. i check him over.

blood--coming out of his mouth. i panic, my heart racing, flashbacks of rollerskating and knocking out my tooth, root and all. with every passing second, i'm ever more certain that he's knocked out his front teeth, all four of them. i rush him to the bathroom to wash his mouth out, trying to slow the bleeding with cold water so i can see what's going on in there. i call matthew, screaming, 'there's been an accident, mouth bloody, teeth gone, blood everywhere, what do i do?!?'

my upstairs neighbor, who has a three-year old, hears the hullabaloo through the lightwell and knocks on the door, offering help. we get things sorted out, ice cubes wrapped in cloth and placed on leon's mouth, and then the crying picks up again. she leaves so i can nurse him. i cautiously pry open his mouth, dark visions clouding my eyes.

all teeth are there. nightmares of leon spending the next 8-10 years without his top teeth vanish. i swear on all things good in the world that i will never do computer stuff while watching leon. distracted parenting doesn't really work, especially when your 10 month old has inherited your clumsiness. i know i can't prevent every single little accident or bad thing, but that doesn't lessen the blind hope with which i hold him close, attempting to keep them at bay a little longer.

5 comments:

melissa k w said...

aw that's so sad. poor little guy and poor you. i know what you mean about distracted parenting... it's just so hard to be on them 100% of the time. i'm glad he's okay, though.

leon is SO cute. i love all his hair and the photo of him with the backpack rules.

Stephanie said...

Oh man - my heart was in my mouth reading this. So scary for both of you!

Dang little blocks!

I am so glad he's okay. My mom always was a champ dealing with anyone else's blood, but whenever she saw ours, she couldn't handle it. It's providential your neighbor was on hand!

dearbirthday said...

poor leon!
how frightening.
poor erica!
don't beat yourself up! melissa is right, it's SO hard to be 100% there 100% of the time. impossible, really.

glad to hear everyone's ok!

jordan said...

Oh my gosh, little mouths bleed so much. I used to work at a preschool, and the first time a little one landed on his mouth (on the make-believe kitchen sink) there was so much blood. I absolutely flipped out, and all of the other teachers were like, relax, the mouth bleeds so much and looks catastrophic, but then the cut is itty bitty. It's really true. It doesn't get easier to see, though.

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