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My husband was greatly distressed this last Sunday regarding an injury our grandson suffered while in our care. It was most innocent and truly a freak accident.
Our grandson simply adores my husband who is known as "Opa". When he comes to visit, he is my husband's little shadow. Hubby is often outside working on projects, and Landon gladly is there to offer "help". On this particular day, Opa was carrying some rebar to secure fencing around our pool. One of our neighbors was out and about walking her dog, and called out a friendly "hello" to my husband. As he turned to respond to her welcomed greeting, the rebar in his hand rotated right into our grandson's head around the eye area.
Our grandson did not cry, but immediately started rapid eye-blinking and rubbing around the lid, and was having difficulty keeping his eye open. My husband's heart immediately sank and he felt just awful about this unsettling event...our neighbor was very concerned as well. My husband just kept saying over and over again: "I was supposed to be protecting him".
As it turns out, our grandson is fine with only a little scrap on his forehead and no other issues and we are grateful, but this incident made me think about the vulnerabilities in healthcare-we have the very best of intentions to provide a protective and safe environment for patients, staff, and visitors....and yet, there are times when accidents do happen. It really does make our hearts sink, we feel awful, and it too is unsettling.
I did not want to unduly chastise my husband, but I did tell him "honey, you have to constantly be watching where he is as you know he loves being near you".
I suppose we all need a gentle admonishment to always be aware of our environments, assess any potential safety issues, and strive for prevention.