Vacation just isn’t vacation until there’s a trip to the E.R. So today officially started our vacation!
This afternoon was pretty nice outside. It was around 60 degrees, not too much wind, so the kids went outside and played baseball. They were chasing the balls all around the property, including through some longer brush and what-not.
After a long day of playing, and a long night the night before, Quin was pretty tired. So around 7:30 we decided it was time to start what we thought would be a quick descent into sleepy time, starting with a bath. It was your typical bath, even though it was in a strange tub. Once he got out and was drying off, Quin was feeling around and discovered something strange on the underside of his “special purpose.” He showed it to me, and I confirmed - a tick!
I gave it a couple of quick tries, not knowing what the protocol was for a dad to be messing around with his 6 year old’s nether regions, but giving it an honest try. It wasn’t long before I admitted defeat, however, and called up his more nimble fingered mother. Jenny worked at it for a bit before she, too, admitted defeat, and resorted to using tools instead, so she employed a tweezers. That’s when things started to go downhill!
She managed to get the main portion of the tick removed with the tweezers, but this little guy was in there pretty good! There were a LOT of waterworks, a lot of screaming, and a lot of convincing him that we needed to try to get the head out of this. It was a mess! We tried pretty much everything, but after all was said and done, Quin looked at us and said, “listen to me! You’re hurting my skin, and you’re hurting me! Please stop!”
So we started talking through what we should do next. Should we call the doctor? What did the internet say? Was it a deer tick? Was the head really in there (it was)? Quin didn’t much like listening to all of this - he didn’t want to go to the Doctor! Of course, after a bit of digging around, and telling him that it wouldn’t hurt to go to the doctor, he WANTED to go to the DOCTOR, PLEASE!!!
We gave up. We got him in his jammies and I fetched my cell phone and called the number I remember so well from my youth - 715.743.3101. I asked for the nurse on call, then I’ll admit, I through my name out there expecting some special treatment (I didn’t get any). The nurse informed me that she thought we should bring him in so the doctor could look at him.
Being Neillsville, we weren’t expecting this to be too big a deal. It is only about a 10 minute ride to the hospital from pretty much anywhere in the zip code. Once we got there around 8:45, the parking lot was a bit fuller than would be expected. We checked in and were informed that it would probably be awhile - things were kind of busy. The waiting room had 2 other groups of people sitting already. We were lucky to have a television and remote to keep us company, and there was a baseball game on, so that worked out OK.
About 45 minutes later, we were the only ones left in the waiting area. I mentioned to Jenny that, unless there was an ambulance, we should be in shortly. It was quiet there, so we could hear the page coming in that the ambulance was inbound, something about shortness of breath, etc… Yep - bad luck!
Despite the ambulance’s arrival, we got in around 9:45 and they started taking vitals, height, and weight. Quin is 50 inches tall (something the tech was unable to figure out, unfortunately) and weighed 60 pounds! After a couple of minutes, Dr. Stanga came in and was able to confirm the existence of a tick head on the underside of Quin’s penis.
The doctor gave some orders and left the room. After numbing up the area, we were left alone with our little boy who had lots of questions. “Is it biting me? Why’s it in there? Is it moving around?” At one point during our attempts, I explained to him that ticks had teeth that bit so hard that they wouldn’t let go, to which Quin informed us that we should just “knock out it’s teeth.” “That would only hurt the tick, not me!” He continued on that line of thought at the doctor’s office as well.
By 10:30, tick head, along with just a little bit of Quinton’s tender bits gone, and with antibiotics in hand (they treat for Lyme’s in all cases, I guess), we were on our way back to the Tibbett’s. Quin took his medicine and he and I went up to finally go to sleep - he did manage to sleep for an hour while we waited to get into the E.R. Of course, he was a little charged up now, so we had some interesting conversation while he tried to fall off to sleep:
“Why is my penis so special?” he asked me, referring back to when I was explaining to him why we had to go to the doctor’s. I told him that every part of us is special. Conversation averted, or so I thought. “What do we use our penises for, just peeing?” “A few other things,” I said. “How many?” he asked. “Oh, I don’t know, six-or-seven.” “Well, which is it, six or seven?” This went on for a while…
“Why did they say that’s a bad place to get a tick?” he asked me? I explained that there are a lot of nerves in that area, and that it typically hurt especially bad. That got us into a whole discussion about nerves and what function they served to the body.
After many more gripping questions (I’ll include more if I remember them), he finally asked me, “can I mess around with my penis?” I told him maybe not tonight. Tomorrow would be OK, probably. “Well, tomorrow’s kind of busy,” he said. Never too busy to mess around with your penis… Maybe I shouldn’t have said that to him, but I like to make a point of not lying to my children…