It was the last week of June, when PipSqueak tried to jump off her nightstand and broke her leg. When I was a child, I jumped off the top bunk. So my girls sleep on mattresses on the floor. The tallest thing in their room is the nightstand, which is a mere 17 inches. But apparently dangerous enough to break a leg. So I guess nothing is “safe.”
PipSqueak had a cast for 4 weeks. Basically the entire month of July. A lame way to spend the summer. Fortunately, she did not like swimming anyway, and thought even a drop of water would cause her to freeze to death. So she was content to watch the fun from a safe, dry distance.
We spent 4 days carrying her around, and going to the chiropractor to fix my back. She’s only 25 lbs, but I guess I’m out of shape. Or it is extra work to set her all the way down on the floor, rather than standing. She eventually figured out how to crawl. After 2 weeks, she started to walk with her Big Orange Sock. She even resumed climbing at the gym. The cast did not slow her down at all.
The cast snags on things like blankets, so I put my sock on over her cast. That way she could roll over in bed and not get too angry. So she wore holes in the top of the socks while crawling, and then holes in the bottom when she started walking. Fortunately the socks were too big for me anyway, but very fun colors, so I kept them just in case I needed them for something. We got good use out them! I used cloth diaper fabric to make a water-proof-ish sock for her, and then put a normal sock on top to protect it, since she was putting holes in everything.
By August, it was very hot out! I was sooooo excited to get her cast off! But it turned out she needed a boot for 2 more weeks. That was disappointing, but at least an improvement. I planned to go straight to the chiropractor after getting the cast off, so we did, but now with a boot on.
At least we could take off the Big Black Boot for bath time. At the lake, I let her sit in the kayak or inner tube with the boot off. I take her hearing aid off to play in the water, so then when I set her on the beach to dry off, I end up yelling, “Sit Down!” I do not usually YELL at my child, only if she is deaf and has a broken leg. We do not want her to stand up and start all over with a cast.
Compared to the cast, the Boot was way more painful for me. When she stepped on my foot with slip-resistant rubber. Or sat on my lap, innocently swinging her legs and OUCH! Or even worse, her trying to jump, and expecting me to catch her. Please do not dive at me with that lead foot! It really hurts! That thin piece of metal sticking out below her toes also made it extra easy to climb the cupboard drawers.
By the time she got the boot off, she was very ready to play in the water! It was also a record hot 102 degrees. Friends invited us to join them at the pool. Usually I put life jackets on both girls, but Monkey was complaining, “I do not want to wear my life jacket, because I am trying to drown.” I have explained countless times, that drowning = dead. Fortunately, all she is actually trying to do is put her face under water and swim.
So Monkey was in the kiddy pool with no life jacket, but it is only 12-24 inches deep. Pipsqueak had her life jacket on, and her hearing aids off. She was ready and eager to jump in the pool. Never mind that last time she tried jumping, she broke her leg. This time she went to the edge of the pool, yelled for her sister, and then jumped at her. Monkey did not have time to figure out that she was expected to catch her sister. So she got tackled.
Monkey recovered quickly and stood back up. PipSqueak, on other hand, was struggling. Apparently her life jacket is too buoyant. It is for children who weigh 30-50 lbs, but she only weighs 25 lbs. So the life jacket held her completely above water. She was trying to get her feet down, but instead was flipping back and forth between back-float, and belly-float with her face in the water. I had to jump in and save her. The water was only up to my knees. So apparently even wearing a life jacket, a child could still drown in very shallow water.
Somehow, my cautious child was un-scared by the event. Or maybe it was just that hot outside? So she had a blast playing in the kiddy pool – wearing her puddle jumper arm floaties, which allow her to remain upright and keep her feet on the ground. I guess that is what she will be using, until she reaches at least 30 lbs.
I’m glad we figured that out in the kiddy pool, rather than if she tried jumping out of the kayak in the river.