Patrick (age 6) fell off his bike on Monday afternoon. Lots of blood and tears were shed, presumably along with a baby tooth we'll never recover from the winter gravel that still covers the street in front of the house.

It was serious enough that I immediately took him to the walk-in clinic. And they sent us to the the hospital for x-rays.

Three x-rays, 1 CAT scan, and 5 hours later, they confirmed that he not only broke his jaw, but broke it in two places. Along with the lost tooth I thought was gone but couldn't confirm because he couldn't open his mouth wide enough.

By Tuesday evening, his jaw was surgically wired shut, and they'd removed another two baby teeth from his mouth. The swelling was pretty severe -- I couldn't believe how different he looked.

I told him my plan of going to get him something special at the store to keep him busy while he recovered at the hospital after surgery. I was thinking along the lines of a LEGO of MegaBlok toy. When they brought him back to his room after the surgery, his first words mumbled to us through clenched jaw, pain, and morphine: "Can I get a skateboard now?"

(Picture quality is quite poor; all I had with me at the hospital to take pictures was the Nintendo DSi we had brought to keep him busy.)

In the middle of the night between Tuesday and Wednesday, just hours after he'd had his surgery, Patrick woke me up around 2am. He was crying, and I couldn't make out a single word he was telling me. Took a while to finally understand he was sad because -- unknown to me! -- he'd put under his hospital pillow 2 of the 3 teeth he'd lost during the accident. And he'd just checked, and the Tooth Fairy had not yet replaced the broken teeth with the money he expected.

I got him calmed down, and as soon as he was asleep again made sure the Tooth Fairy took care of everything.

Patrick came home on Friday after 5 days in the hospital. That evening I took him to a store so he could pick out a skateboard. This is the one he chose: #4414

After a week, the swelling is mostly gone, and he's back to his normal playful self. Except without the running, biking, and eating. For now, and for the next month, he'll be enjoying blended foods. He tells us that both hot dogs and spaghetti taste exactly the same even after they've been blended to a cream. But honestly, I wouldn't want to be in his shoes.

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