Sunday, July 12, 2009

"Mama, you sound like an elephant!"

I'm glad I've given myself a few hours to recuperate after my traumatic morning because I don't know what emotional blabberings I would have blogged had I done so directly after the event. I plan to relay this horrific event just as I experienced, thoughts and all. Here it goes...

Rylee is sleeping soundly in my bed while I am applying make-up as I get ready for church. I've been up for 30 minutes, letting her sleep just a bit longer. I've taken my shower and have almost completed the make-up process, except for a bit of lipstick. I dig in my drawer trying to find the right shade, when all of a sudden, the house alarm erupts. Unclothed, I run to the bedroom door, slam it shut, and lock it, knowing that I have created at least one more obstacle between the intruder and us. The whole time I am screaming, "WHO IS HERE?!! WHO IS HERE?!"

Someone is. I hear him running through the house, obviously frightened of the blaring alarm, which I refuse to turn off until I know help is on the way. I grab the phone to dial 911, but there is no dial tone. He has cut the phone line! I'm screaming with a voice so stricken with panic, "WHO IS IT?!!! WHO IS IN MY HOUSE?!!" I can't believe this is happening. It's my worst fear, and here I am
alone in the house, facing an intruder.

It is only now that I reach for Rylee to make sure she is okay, but she is gone. She is gone! I swing open the door and run down the hall into the living room,


No answer, except the alarm screaming through the house. I panicked! Where is she? Did he take her?

I rush to the back door and notice the deadbolt is still locked. Rational thought begins to invade my highly emotional being and I realize something...Gilfore. Gilfore the turtle. GILFORE THE TURTLE!

I hear Rylee whimpering amidst the house alarm (yes, still blaring) and I scream for her. I can't find her anywhere. I run back down the hallway and find her in her room, covering her ears, crying.

"Rylee, did you open the back door?"

Crying, she nods her head, still with her hands shielding her ears from the blasts.

"Rylee, you opened the door?"

"Yes," she says.

I run to turn the alarm off, just as the alarm service is calling to make sure all is okay. I give them the password, letting them know not to send anyone.

I grab Rylee, my heart still racing and my hands still shaking. Tears begin to well up in my eyes as I hold her tight. She, still shocked from the experience, has tears in her eyes.

"Rylee, why did you open the back door?"

Quietly and with the sweetest voice, "You said I could feed Gilfore in the morning."

I held her tight in disbelief and relief, allowing the last few minutes to sink in. We sit for a minute before Rylee rebounds quicker than I, saying,

"Mama, you sound like an elephant."

"What?! How do I sound like an elephant?!"

She mimics my breathing, "Hee hoo, hee hoo. You sound like an elephant breathing."

I laugh and I cry, more from relief now that the whole thing is over. I set her down, fix her some cereal, and turn on Mickey Mouse for her to watch.

I return to my bathroom, and shakily, find my lipstick in the drawer.

Friday, July 10, 2009


It's been awhile since I have blogged. I thought I would keep it up when summer came around, you know with all my free time, but I have deduced that I am more motivated to blog when I have a stack of papers to grade. So why am I blogging now? I have a bathroom to clean...

I have had a drama-filled morning, so I thought that blogging would give me an outlet, a relief of tension, a method of relaxation, if you will.

The Friday morning started as usual: woke up, ate breakfast, played around. Then I had the great idea to run, which is very hard to do with a 4 year old, but I thought perhaps she could ride her bike, while I jogged along beside her. I thought it was a great idea; she thought is was a great idea; it was NOT a great idea.

We started out the back door, Rylee on her bike, me with my water and phone in hand (in case we were attacked my a stranger, a dog, a vicious bird). We were having fun, walking and running and riding, until we reached the hill. Or I should say, The Hill.

Rylee took her feet off the pedals and coasted down The Hill, and it was about 20 feet into the free fall that I became aware of her increasing speed and my inability to reach her if she was unable to sustain her balance. I started calling, "Rylee! Rylee, slow down!" But she continued her descent. I started jogging, and yelling, "Rylee! Hit the brakes!" But her speed only grew more intense. I yelled one more time, "RYLEE! RYLEE!!" She finally put her feet down, beginning her 5 second attempt to stop the bike.

Her legs flung out to the side, she slid backwards off the bike, still holding the handle bars, bless her heart. The bike drug her a few feet before the front wheel began to topple side to side, causing her hands to release from the front bars. She fell to the ground, the bike fell on top of her, and then the descent was over.

I came running up to her, laughing, yes, laughing because I couldn't get those last 5 seconds out of my head. A still shot of her would look like she was caught in a wind storm and she was holding on for dear life while her body flung horizontally over her bike. Yes, it was funny.

"Rylee, are you okay?" I managed to squeak out.
"Yes. I couldn't stop," she said in shock.
"Why didn't you hit the brakes?"
"I couldn't do it. I was going too fast."
"Do you want to go back home?"
"No, I am okay. I didn't get hurt."
"Okay, good. That was sort of funny, though."
"Uh,oh," she says, her voice shaking.

I looked down and saw what she saw: a quarter-sized bloody spot on the inside of her knee where she made contact with the road before the bike fell on top of her.

That was it. The laughing was over. She started crying, I mean, screaming, I mean, wailing because the pain. Automatically, her leg was not functional, so she continued to wail while balancing on one leg.

I had quite a dilemma. We were about half a mile from the house, down a hill, in a remote place. I thought I could carry her back, but I had her bike, my phone, and my water to think about as well. I called for reinforcements.

Rylee's dad couldn't get there for ten minutes, which really isn't that long, unless you have a 4 year old wailing on the side of the road in 80 degree weather, then 10 minutes is a very long time, almost eternal. About five minutes into the wait, I decided to make the walk back to the house. I stashed the bike in the woods, chunked my water, and picked up Rylee, who decided to go limp at the point of contact.

I start walking up The Hill, and about half way up, my breathing gets a bit heavier. Sweat is dripping off of me, which gets worse because Rylee sporatically is beating me on the back because the pain is so intense. My breathing gets louder, and through her screams, I notice her looking up at me, probably even more afraid of the sounds coming out of me. But I press on...

I get to the top of The Hill and feel successful...for a short second, because I know I have a loooong way to go, and the rest of the trip is in the direct sun. But that wasn't the worst; every time the wind hit her scratch, I mean, wound, I mean, death-inducing gash, she screams, tightens up, and beats me on the back.

Now, I know the girl was in pain. Heck, at this point, I was in pain, but there was no way I could make the pain, for either of us, go away.

"Honey, I can't do that!"
With more intensity, "MAKE THE WIND STAAAAH-OPPP! IT HU-URTS!"

As a mother, I wish I could have. As a mother, holding 35 pounds of a wailing mess, I desperately wish I could have. But I couldn't, and I also couldn't walk anymore.

I found some shade off on the side of the road, and, defeated, waited for her dad. He had found the hidden bike and came to take us home. She cried off and on for an hour and a half, but at this moment, she is okay. She's limping around the house, she won't pull her undies down to go to the potty, and there is no telling when I will ever get her in the bath again, but she is not crying anymore, and trust me, that is the most important thing.

I think tomorrow I will just go to the gym.