Monday 2 July 2012

The Panic

Hands up who has panicked when their kid has fallen over? Tentatively I'm sure, but I bet every parents hand is raising as you read this! It's a natural reaction. We run over, there are screams, tears, but normally it's just the indignant shock of face planting the floor when they least expected it. Hugs, kisses and TLC (and sweets) tend to make everything OK. Hands up if after 5 minutes it is as if the fall / accident never happened! I reckon hands are shooting into the air! Kids bounce! It's a fact! For a toddler to seriously injure themselves something pretty awful must have happened. Generally, it's a bump and bruise or a graze and everything is OK. That doesn't mean we stop panicking every time it happens, but we know what to do when it does. Mums are probably better than dads in general, mainly because they see it happen and deal with it more; that is no slight on the dads whatsoever! This 'panic' in this post is two-fold and you'll see why. Now, something for all the mums to remember before you read this post. Think back to when your first born was very young. Do you remember the first time you went out and left them with dad?! Dads, do you remember being left alone with them for the first time?! A scary time for all involved! Did anything like this happen?!

"18 month old male, fall, arm injury"

We were absolutely miles away. For a city, 14 miles is a long time to travel, especially on a Saturday afternoon. Apparently we were the nearest available ambulance so begrudgingly, off we went to my least favourite area. The job was a very low category, so low we didn't even need to travel on lights. As call volume was high, the lower categories of call have to wait longer for an ambulance, and by the time we got it the call was well over an hour old. Off we trundled, having to sit in every traffic jam and at every red light. After 25 minutes we still had 9 miles to go. Then the call upgraded to the highest priority of call, a Red 1.

"18 month old male, fall, arm injury, patient now unconscious"

Unconscious draws the same dispatch response as a cardiac arrest so it was unlikely we would be first on scene. We lit up the roof and flicked on the sirens and off we went! Bye bye traffic jams, bye bye traffic lights! See ya! It was still 15 minutes on lights and sirens but we made it and we were indeed 4th on scene. There was already a response car, another ambulance and a community first responder. Neighbours were out of their houses, curtains were being twitched and for the cul-de-sac we were in, it was the event of the century! Everyone loves a bit of drama!

We piled into the house and entered the sea of green that was the living room. The child was sat on the sofa, awake, not crying, a little grouchy but are you surprised? I too would be livid if two ambulance and two responders woke me up from my AFTERNOON NAP!!! Yes, you've guessed it; the boy wasn't unconscious, he was asleep. The trauma of falling off the large bean bag had been too much to handle and all the crying had worn him out. It was also 4pm so well past his nap time, of course he would be tired! Amazingly, today was the first time the dad had been left alone with his son! 18 months! He was beside himself with worry and despite 4 paramedics, a technician and a community responder telling him his son was fine, he wouldn't have it, he wanted to go to hospital incase there was a fracture! He really was beside himself with worry, it was quite funny! He disappeared upstairs to grab the 'red book' and a change of clothes like we'd asked. At that moment I saw through the net curtains a woman running at full speed down the garden path!

"Oh my god, oh my god, what's happened?!"

Mum was home! Imagine her panic? She has left for 2 hours to get her hair done. She walks home and outside her house are 2 ambulances, a car and a community responder, most with blue lights still flashing. She then enters her house to see 7 ambulance staff in her living room! I think i'd be terrified! We explained what had happened as hubby came back into the room looking sheepish:

"2 hours! I left you for 2 hours, most of which he should have been asleep! What is wrong with you?! I'm sorry about this, he doesn't need to go to hospital does he?"

"No, he's fine"

"See! He's fine, what the hell were you thinking?"

She went to town on him! Poor guy! We all piled out leaving them to 'discuss' parenting techniques! What can you say though? Surely after 18 months he should know what a sleeping child looks like?! I have learned over the years never to presume a thing!

There isn't really any advice I can give. I can't even be angry or wound up! OK, I can! I was livid to be sent so many miles for that. I was annoyed at being in the area and available for another call. We ended up being 2 hours late off because we were so far away from our station, but I can't be annoyed with the dad. It was genuine concern and an emergency to him. The only advice I could give him was to "Keep Calm and Carry On"! Kids are resilient. Falling off a beanbag will very rarely result in anything other than crocodile tears. If you are worried though, call us. Maybe ring mum first though, she might have some wise words to save the embarrassment of having us all pile in, then out of your house and watching you get schooled by the Mrs! 


  1. Poor bloke! He won't be living that one down in a while lol

  2. I had a call from a mum friend who was away for the weekend saying her husband had just called an ambulance for their youngest and could I go and look after their older child. When I got there the toddler was in the ambulance and just had a small cut on his lip (he didn't get taken to hospital). When the husband rang my friend to say he was fine she didn't believe him and wouldn't stop trying to return from her weekend away until she had spoken to me. Mum knows best - even if it isn't that child's mum.

  3. Love it!
    Dads should be more involved with their children although I didn't leave my husband in sole charge for quite a while and my own father was NEVER asked to do it.
    Times change...

  4. Dads should be involved from the off and then this kinda thing wouldn't happen. When my daughter was born, my other half was involved as much as he could. He was HAPPY to be left along with our child because it meant he got to be the primary caregiver and he had the opportunity to bond.

    All this guy says to me is why the hell didn't he feel comfortable looking after his 18 month old child? Why did he feel the need to call the ambulance when his kid was fine. Where is his common sense? Why wouldn't he call the child's mum first? Why didn't he get involved from the off? It's ridiculous.

  5. pleased the baby was ok - I bet mum had a right go at the dad after you all had left.

  6. glad the little one was ok - but I bet the mum got a right fright when she arrived home to see you all there.

  7. Brilliant post, laughed so much and not sure I should have been. Shame on the dad taking 18 months to look after him, I couldn't wait to get rid of my other half and left alone with our little man

  8. I'm sorry, I've just found this blog and I've enjoyed it thus far. I'm a male, without children but even I'm irked by the implied sexism here regarding male fathers and the idea that mothers are just 'better'.

  9. Haha brilliant !! Im a Technicisn and I love your blig as I can relate to it. Ive bookmarked your page and its now going to be my nighshift amusement. Thank you Ella and please carry on xx


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