Passing on the Clumsiness Gene to Your Kids
It's sad that I have so much in common, medically speaking, with my younger son, Logan. In this edition of Trial & Error I examine an unfortunate case of, "Like father, like son".
I was known as a clumsy kid. I've grown into a clumsy man. My son, Logan, is very similar to me in that regard, but we don't call him clumsy. We call him Danger Baby. The difference between my clumsiness & his is that he seems to welcome it. He didn't shed a tear getting stitches in his forehead. He never had a problem getting tubes in his ear. Dad? Not so much.
I complain constantly about my clumsiness epidemic. I've written blog posts about it. I've tried to change my luck for the better, but so far it's been an epic fail. The biggest side effect of my clumsiness can't be counted in the shirts I've thrown away because of food stains on the front, or the number of iPhones I've broken. The true scale of the "clumsy" inside my body can be counted on my trips to the doctor.
In 2004, as I caravanned with my wife in two separate cars from Alaska to Texas I took a dip in an indoor hotel pool in Canada. After a long day on the road into a different country I felt a relaxing swim would be nice. I headed down to the pool, only to discover an added bonus. This pool had a water slide, and not your typical community pool water slide, but a huge covered tube slide that started 30 feet up. My first trip down the slide changed my life forever. As I was spit out into the water my momentum turned me to the right and I hit the water ear-first on my left side. I could feel that I'd gotten water in my ear, but I did the little one-footed-water-in-your-ear-idiot-hop and thought the issue was closed.
A day & a half later, driving from the mountains of Montana & Wyoming into the plains of Nebraska I could feel my ear quickly getting more & more painful. It got so bad that I stopped at a pharmacy in West Iowa to see what could be attained over the counter. After buying out the store's "swimmer's ear" products I continued on my way.
It wasn't until more than a year later that the lingering side effects took me to the doctor. I was told I had a hole in my eardrum. That diagnosis turned to something ever more strange at the ENT doc, as he told me my eardrum was actually being sucked into my head by something. That diagnosis turned into me getting a tube put in my ear.
Fast forward two years, and my clumsiness took me to the Emergency Room. I had been attempting to cut the cords on the packaging of the family's new pooper-scooper when the knife slipped and cut me in the webbing of my hand between my index finger and my thumb. It wasn't bleeding terribly, but the placement in the webbing made me take that trip to the ER. The diagnosis? One stitch. Not stitches. One stitch. So now I can't even say I got stitches... I actually got a single stitch. That's basically the doctor saying he doesn't want me to feel like I wasted my time by going into the ER so he gives me a sympathy stitch.
Today's trip to the doctor, which didn't have much to do with clumsiness, has led to another similar diagnosis to Logan. Much like when he was a baby I've been given an Albuterol prescription to help with my lingering cough. This is the same stuff we forced Logan to inhale throughout his first year. He at least got a cool dinosaur mask to wear. I just get the "nerd" inhaler.
To update the score here... I'm 35 years old, I'm balding, I have grey in my beard, I have high blood pressure, and yet in the past decade I've had a tube put in my ear like a little kid, I've had a single stitch, and now I've got the nerdy kid's asthma treatment. I'm the real Toys R Us kid. I don't wanna grow up.