I usually like to think of myself as a pretty good Mum. I have two healthy, happy little girls who are seldom poorly and have never been to A&E with them. Then yesterday that all changed and I had the afternoon from hell which left me feeling like the worse Mum in the World.
It was about 3.20pm and I was getting the girls milk and snack ready before going to get Rosie up from her nap. Poppy was in the kitchen wearing just her knickers as she had taken her tights and tee-shirt off after getting soaking wet washing her hands after going to the bathroom. She didn’t want a clean top on – is it just my girls that strip off when playing at home?
I warmed the milk as usual, both cups in the microwave together for 1 minute. I then handed her the cup and turned back to cutting the apple wedges I was preparing for them. I was stood right next to her. Poppy let out an almighty scream and I turned to see what was wrong…she was shouting the milk the was hot so I checked it and it was as usual – luke warm, not hot at all. Then I looked at her properly. She had a big red mark down her chest, like something had dribbled all the way down and my heart almost stopped, I felt sick…… what had I done?
All I could think was that I had rinsed the cup out before putting milk in it and it had one of those lids that flip back. I think I must have left a tiny bit of water in it and that was what had burnt her…..what a terrible Mum I am and why didn’t I notice?
Not sure what to do I reached for the frozen peas and put them on her chest (apparently not a good thing to do – it can aggravate and send little ones into shock, you should use a wet flannel instead). She was hysterical so I tried to calm her down giving her hugs and kisses and telling her what I was doing. At this point Rosie started screaming upstairs, probably wondering what all the fuss was. I left her for a few minutes but she was getting louder.
I then left Poppy sat at the bottom of the stairs for a minute with the peas and ran and got Rosie. I gave her her milk and snack, then turned back to Poppy. She was really upset and kept saying “sorry” so I told her it was my fault, she hadn’t done anything wrong. She was shivering and shaking at this point so I put the peas away and brought her into the living room. I sat her on my knee and wrapped a fleecy blanket round us both, giving her a big cuddle. She was really upset but snuggled in to me. We stayed liked this for ages.
I tried to ring my husband but he was at work…I didn’t know what to do. He rang back a little later and I tried to explain what had happened but wasn’t doing a very good job. I told him it was pretty bad and Poppy became hysterical again. He was stuck at work and I was stuck at home, heavily pregnant with no car, no money for a taxi or bus and it was absolutely hammering it down outside. I felt stuck.
I decided as it was just red she probably didn’t need an ambulance but then around 5pm she pointed out that a blister had appeared, just a tiny one and part of it looked bumpy. Not sure what to do I put some Savlon healing gel on it, it did say for superficial burns so I figured it was OK even though I didn’t really know what a superficial burn was.
I decided not to bath her and was hoping Husband could get home quickly so we could get her checked out…he didn’t. By this point I had thought to look on the internet and it said to keep area clean and dry.
We found it was sticking to her pj top and I saw that if you don’t have anything else you can cover the burn with cling film to prevent sticking to clothes, so that is what I did. A square of it pressed against her tummy and tucked into her pj bottoms.
By 6.15pm she was telling me she just wanted to go to bed and was tired, so I dosed her up with medicine and helped her clean her teeth before taking her to bed.
Then I broke down into tears, I had been holding it all in for the girls sake but it all came out.
When Husband came home we took the cup and using cold water tried to work out what had happened. The water in the lid seemed the most likely explanation. We decided she couldn’t have tipped it up to her mouth or it would have splashed all over her face and neck, instead it must have happened either as she took it from me or as she lifting it towards her mouth.
It was a long night! Poppy slept soundly but was very fidgety. I found myself checking on her constantly.
This morning it still looked long and pink but much better than yesterday. However, I told Husband I wanted to make an appointment to get it checked out. We managed to get one for this afternoon and the Doctor was fantastic, very reassuring and made us feel much better. Luckily it is a superficial burn which means there should be no lasting damage or scaring…phew what a relief! It may take a while to go back to its normal colour.- maybe a week or two.
Tonight she has had a bath and a little aqueous cream rubbed on it and she seems ok. She has also had a bit more Calpol too.
We have been lucky.
It is a terrible feeling when you hurt your child, words can not explain that horrible sickly feeling in your stomach and heart. Knowing I may well have scarred for life one of the people I love more than anything in the World and would do anything to protect from harm was just the worst feeling ever. I am so relieved that she is going to be okay and it is unlikely to scar.
I still feel terrible but know that deep down, I am not a bad Mum. I also know it could have been so much worse.
Please though, if you have a cup with a flip up lid, please learn a lesson from me and do not put it in the microwave. I know I wont be doing it again.