Tonight I took the boys to the little family carnival at the YMCA.
When we arrived, I only bought three dollars worth of tickets, because I wasn't sure how many activities would be geared toward 1- and/or 4-year-olds. For a quarter a game, they both played the dock pond. Mo knocked over plastic bowling pins and threw ping pong balls into buckets and tossed beanbags - excitedly winning a balloon, pencil and paddle ball.
Then we headed to the gym to bounce on some inflatables. And that's when the trouble happened.
Curly tripped on the gym floor and bonked himself really hard. Now, his little nose is already bruised pretty bad after colliding with the sidewalk a week ago - from the same thing, trying to walk/run too fast and tripping.
So tonight at the Y, he fell down, and began screaming. He's got a huge tolerance for pain - not surprising with all he's been through - so I knew the little guy was really hurting. I scooped him up and held him tight against my chest and swayed with him for a several minutes, while he gradually calmed down.
Then I realized his nose was bleeding. Like, really bleeding. His face was a mess and I later noticed I was covered in blood, too, from holding him so close.
I grabbed Mo from his beloved bounce house, and somehow accounted for all the shoes and coats. The lovely Y staff helped me manage the stroller, got us some first aid supplies and led us into a private office away from the carnival crowd. Curly was fussy and upset, but at least he cooperated as I cleaned him up. Mo stuck by my side and didn't complain.
The whole ordeal was chaotic and stressful.
Once I got Curly under control, I just wanted to get home as fast as possible.
I told Mo to forget the crafts or face painting, it was time to leave. I still had a dollar's worth of tickets, so we got two popcorns to go. Only the lady dishing it out - one of those who helped us recover from Curly's incident - wouldn't take our money/tickets. (We must have looked pretty pathetic, Curly with his banged-up face, me with my blood-covered shirt, Mo quietly disappointed over leaving early.)
So I handed our unused tickets off to volunteer ticket takers - and they tried to give me my buck back, which was very sweet, but I told them to keep it. I felt bad only spending three dollars at their fundraising carnival as it was!
Anyway - so we get home and Mo runs in to report to Daddy about our adventures. Do you think he mentioned the games? Prizes? Bouncy house? Gushing blood, screaming brother, frantic Mommy? Or being forced to leave without getting his face painted?
He ran into the house and excitedly told Dad: "Guess what? We got free popcorn tonight!"
Ah, the perspective of a 4-year-old: Priceless.
9 months ago