The cruise, our first, was actually pretty cool. The weather was nice and the food was good. Carnival Cruises has *free* camp daycare for children over 2 years old from approximately 9 am until 10 pm at night (with a few breaks). We did not leave Conor in there for even just one entire day, but it was nice to drop him off for a few hours so he could do kid things (color, dance lessons--the sprinkler?, crafts, truck races, etc) and we could do grown up things (be lazy, play cards).
All in all, we totally recommend cruises for family vacations. Lots of opportunities for everyone and you don't have to cook or clean. How cool is that?
Of course, we unwittingly continued Dave's family tradition on family vacations--a somewhat serious trip to the emergency room. We did not plan on doing this, yet, it happened.
We got on the ship about 11:30 am on Monday. At about 4:30 pm on Monday, the ship pushed off the dock. At this point, Dave got his first umbrella drink* and I got a fake umbrella drink. We were all on the top deck of the ship looking watching the cruise shop and enjoying the weather. Conor was playing "make believe" golf on the putt-putt course we were looking forward to playing on. Make believe golf is apparently a combination of golf and baseball, in which one pretends to putt the ball and then run around the hole. Except this time, Conor decided to run up the putt-putt course and tripped. He fell on the only big, jagged obstacle on the entire course, a fake tree stump with pointed edges.
He screamed. Even as I was running towards him, I could see the blood around him on the putting green. I picked him up and he had a bloody hand over his eye. I swear to God that for one horrifying moment, I thought he had punctured his eye. I pulled his hand down and saw, instead, a huge bloody hole in his forehead.
Dave reached us and scooped up Conor as we began to run for the infirmary, having absolutely no idea where it was. We went down a deck and found a waitress serving drinks. She took one look at us, put her hand to her mouth and screamed. ("Ok! It *is* as bad as I think it is," I thought to myself) She ran us down to the elevator and sent us to the third floor. A kind couple got on the elevator with us and helped us get to the third floor, explaining where the infirmary was. Fortunately, it was directly off the elevator.
We arrived and a very efficient and calm nurse took us immediately to the back. Conor was covered in blood by this time and we were all very upset. She wiped off the blood off his hands, his chin, and his face and we got to see that yes, indeedy, that was a big ass gash on his forehead. Stitches were not optional.
I can go into the gory details, which I do repeatedly when I think about it and get upset, but it was pretty awful for both Conor and me. Dave, being used to stitches on family vacations, was less freaked out. But there was a flushing of the wound with a long needle from underneath the skin. We had to restrain Conor for quite a while as he screamed "OUCHY! OUCHY! IT HURTS." The first set of thin stitches broke, so we had to go with thicker ones. It was rough.
And then it was over and Conor felt much better. Once the act of giving him the two stitches were over, he was really and truly fine. And our nurse spent a substantial amount of time determining that Conor had indeed had his tetanus shot and followed up with us 3 days later to check on the wound and Conor. Really. That meant a lot to us.
Of course, that's still not the whole story. As we were running for the elevator, my narcissistic body decided to have its own breakdown. Turning and running into the elevator door, I felt my calf seize and I heard it pop as the cramp ripped apart. This is the time when all the attention should be on my son and his injury and all of a sudden, I'm lame and shouting out "Fuckity fuck" on the elevator. The good news is that I really only couldn't walk for about 2 or 3 days. The bad news is that when I started to be able to walk better, that's when the bruise from the muscle ripping started to show. By Friday, the entire back of my leg from the middle of my calf to the bottom of my foot was black and blue. Why yes, it *is* very attractive.
Dave said he was holding a bleeding Conor and saw me limping into the elevator, he was like "Oh, crap. How can I take care of both of them." He later told me "I chose Conor, you know." "As well you should have," I replied. We, unlike others, agree this is the right choice for us.
In any case, we got the family drama over with early. The rest of the trip was thrillingly and happily healthy and fun. Conor's scar should be minimal and I don't really care about my leg. It still works and that's fine.
School starts back tomorrow and I certainly cannot complain that I did not do anything this winter break.