All she wanted to do was work on her latest fiber arts project. She hadn’t worked out properly in a week (or so). She saw that it was a half hour until nap time and just threw on her gym clothes and headed down.
Pickle sat in her walker and watched the tv and said hi to her, she got a little close to the elliptical machine so she paused to make sure she couldn’t reach to get her fingers stuck. The walker was quite large, so luckily it prevented her from reaching past her tray.
She continued to work out, change the channels, say hi in the mirror to her sweet girl.
Suddenly she heard crying. She looked to see that her baby had walked over to the water tank (it can no longer be called a water cooler after this experience) and figured she was frustrated that she was stuck. As she got closer, she saw the red lever askew, and a hose of hot water rushing over her baby.
She picked her up, yelled for help, and crossed the hall to another water tank, and depressed the blue lever over the baby’s hands.
The superintendent kept yelling at her to go put toothpaste on her hands.
She thought this sounded a bit ridiculous, but maybe he had had some experience with this that she hadn’t. She ran upstairs and smothered her hands with toothpaste. When she continued to scream she went back to cool water. The super appeared and yelled about the toothpaste again–back to the toothpaste. The crying continued so she looked up babies and burns on her phone….Red Skin- First Degree–no need for 911, ER….But!
The crying continued. She held her hands in the air and cried and cried.
She grabbed the umbrella and walked the 2 blocks to the pediatrician. She barged in and was told they open in 2 minutes. Call 911? Walk to the fire department down the block? Go to the pharmacist? She headed there in case they had some magic burn cream–not open–back to the pediatrician.
The doctor looked at her hands right in the lobby, stayed calm, administered ibuprofen and sent her home with bacitracin samples and advised that her hands may blister.
The baby continued to scream. After a half hour the little blisters started forming between her fingers on one hand. She called the doctor back, and was told she would return the call. The baby kept screaming, she kept praying. She thought about going to the hospital so that she could get the baby some morphine, but the thought of her screaming in the carseat, driving 20+ minutes in the rain, finding a parking spot and doing it all alone seemed like the wrong thing to do.
She finally called her husband because she knew the baby needed a blessing.
Waiting for him to come home was the longest wait in her entire life. As she cradled and shooshed and bounced and cried, all she could think about was that God does not want to see His children suffer. She wanted to take that pain away from her baby more than she had wanted anything, ever. She received a new understanding of the Atonement.
Her husband burst through the door and administered to their baby. And as soon as he finished, she fell asleep. She had witnessed a miracle, finally her pain ceased. As she held her baby in her arms the remainder of the day, she watched the blisters grow and bulge. She nursed her baby as she was in and out of sleep. She was covered with puss as the blisters burst open, and she felt destroyed.
Later that afternoon, her girls bounced in from school. Phoebe’s Mama heart burst and she embraced her Pickle. Lolly was in a puddle as she could not take the grotesqueness that was her sister’s hands. A song was sung: “Pickle, you’re so beautiful, even though parts of you are not….” Pickle talked a tiny bit, suddenly had the impulse to get down on the floor and crawl, and they saw a tiny bit of her personality return.
After the baby went down for the night, her ER doctor friend called and instructed her on how to handle the ever-growing golf balls of puss on her hands. After she and her husband performed the necessary procedures, Pickle seemed relieved and slept the whole night through. She and her baby were both warriors that day.