Find us on Surprisingly Special

As of 2016, this blog, Pancakes in Bed, is no longer active. Please come find us at!!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Why are Collarbones so Wimpy?!?

Seriously. Why are collarbones so wimpy?? James has broken both of his, and now our little bean Calvin's got his first (and hopefully last!) fracture and guess what it is. His collarbone.

It happened during second breakfast. Calvin told his dad that he was hungry, so James offered him toast. Calvin went to get into his chair at the kitchen table while James went to make the toast. Calvin doesn't sit in a baby highchair anymore, his has a toddler chair similar to this one by Keekaroo with the lower step low enough that he can climb in and out of it by himself. He has been getting himself into and out of his high chair without help for several months. He does this many times a day, no problem. This particular time, he fell backward. We don't know why/how exactly he fell. One second James saw him getting into the chair, the next second, James turned around to finish fixing the toast and was surprised to hear a thud followed by Calvin crying. Calvin was lying on his back. James picked him up to console him. Calvin was very upset and asked to go back to bed.

I was supposed to take Calvin and Henry to a baby play group, but Calvin was still so upset that I let him stay in bed and watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse instead. About an hour later, he was still in a really bad mood and when I asked him if he was hurt, he pointed to his shoulder. When I moved him around to check his shoulder he fussed and cried, so I could tell it hurt. I checked to be sure it wasn't dislocated, and it wasn't, but I was worried that it might still be injured. So James looked at it and we called the nurse and ultimately decided we needed to go to the ER.

Our cousins, Pam and Hartley, came over to babysit Henry while James and I carefully put Calvin into his carseat and headed to the hospital. I was relieved to see the ER just about empty and we didn't have to wait long to be admitted. The doc checked him out and listened to our story, then ordered some x-rays to be taken. We did have a pretty long wait to be taken to the x-ray room, but in the meantime they gave Calvin a pain reliever which cheered him up quickly. So he was in a good mood again when we went to have the x-rays taken and the technician said he was really cooperative.

Sure enough, the x-rays showed that one of his wimpy collarbones (clavicle) is fractured. We suspected as much based on Calvin saying his shoulder hurt, but not based on the fall itself. I am really surprised that a fall from such a low height could have broken his clavicle.

Dear Collarbones: Don't be such a wimp!! Sincerely, Diana

So the ER nurse brought the smallest size sling that they had, and it is still way too big for our tiny guy. So he (the nurse) rolled up a towel and used it to pad the sling, which made it usable at least, though not ideal. When we got home, we wrapped a self-adhesive bandage around the sling to help keep him from being able to move his arm at all.

He'll be in that effing sling for about 4 weeks. In the meantime he'll need to be seen by a pediatric orthopedist. Because we don't have enough doctor appointments on our schedule already!


Calvin is handling the whole thing really well, though. He hasn't complained about the sling at all. He's figuring out how to move around and play with his toys one-handed, and how to boss everyone else around to make us get stuff for him. Dealing with one-handed sign language is going to be a big adjustment for all of us. He keeps trying to use the hand that's in the sling to sign and I'm trying to help him understand that he needs to just leave that whole arm alone. And some of the signs look like other signs if you don't have both hands involved... Like when Calvin was trying to tell us he wanted to "play" and James was convinced that he was saying "potty." So James is making him stay on the potty, and Calvin is getting more and more frustrated because he's finished peeing and doesn't want more potty, he wants to play!

I also happen to think James and I are handling the whole thing really well. Part of me feels like, why aren't I more upset about this? And I think it's because we've dealt with so much other medical stuff with the boys that our tolerance for getting tough news from doctors is pretty high at this point. I think it's also because Calvin is taking it so well. (He's kind of awesome, that kid.) It also helps that it was really an honest accident - it wasn't like we were letting him climb bookshelves or something weird and dangerous. My grandmother who lives upstairs is the only person (so far) who has said to me "You should have put him into the chair. You shouldn't let him climb." And yeah, if we had put him into the chair it's less likely that he'd have fallen. But he's a good climber. He can get into the chair by himself because we let him try. It's important to us to let Calvin learn to do things independently, even at a young age and even at his small size. And yeah, accidents happen and they suck. And it's a part of learning and a part of life, and it's hard, but we recover.

So we're praying for speedy healing and that Calvin continues to be his cheerful and patient (and sometimes bossy) little self! And thanks to all our family and friends who have been praying for him and for us :) We appreciate all the love and thoughts and prayers.


  1. What a serious bummer! Glad to hear you are all handling this so we'll. That kid really is amazing! And his parents too. I'm sorry you have more doctor appointments, but happy to know he's being taken care of well.