So after our traumatic experience that I wrote about here – Our First Stitches – we, of course, had to go and get said stitches removed. The doctor who did the stitches at the ER told us just to pop around during the day last week Wednesday and get whoever was on call to remove the stitches. He also said that it would be really quick and wouldn’t be painful at all!
So I took Wednesday afternoon off, picked Ethan up from school, and took him back to the ER. He was calm when we got there, but 5minutes in, he started having a bit of a meltdown…obviously remembering the trauma and pain associated with the last time we were in the ER, and so while we waited on my sister to meet us, I had to give him lots of hugs and kisses and promise him that everything would be fine and that it wouldn’t hurt at all. This coming from me who’s never had stitches and actually had absolutely no idea whether it would be painful or not…I was just going on what the doctor had said.
Once the drama was over, I got up and asked the receptionist whether we’d have to pay for the stitches to come out and she said yes (much to my dismay, but I guess there’s nothing free these days…) – it would be charged according to the ER colour code. Green (the bottom of the list) would be a basic cutting out of the stitches with nothing extra done and would cost R189. Yellow would be the code assigned if the doctor on call needed to inspect the wound before cutting the stiches…go figure!…and would cost R600!!!! [As a side…our medical savings are officially finished…month 5 of the year, amazing!] Now, I’m all for getting things done the “right way”, but at a hefty price of possibly R600 to make TWO CUTS…no thank you. In fact, I wasn’t prepared to pay anything at all, but I figured that I’d never done it myself and so like other clueless parents, I had no other choice but to get the doctor to do it.
Queue my sister – the physio who’s worked with stitches on countless occassions. She informed me when she got there and heard the costs that cutting stitches out was just like cutting them out of a hem on a garment of clothing and that she could do it for me if I was scared. Needless to say, I didn’t need much convincing, and we were out of there pretty quickly with me beaming from ear to ear at the thought of not having to spend unnecessary cash! Unfortunately, she was unable to do it that day as she needed to rush off to work, but she agreed to do it on Saturday when we were going to meet up again. When we got home that afternoon, I asked Ethan to let me have a look to see if I could do it but he was adamant that his aunty was going to do it and that I mustn’t touch it and so we left it at that!!
Roll on Saturday…we met at Papachinos in the morning for a late breakfast and after eating and catching up a bit, Ethan and aunty went to the car to quickly cut out the stitches while my other sister and I packed up and got Riley ready. When we got to the car about 15minutes later, I assumed that it would all be done and that mister would be ready to go home and carry on with the day but nooooo. Apparently, he’d told my sister that he needed mum there to hold his hand. So I handed Riley over to his other aunty and proceeded to hold Ethan’s hand and keep him occupied to take his mind off my sister cutting at his head. The silence and bravado lasted all of 2minutes. Thereafter, mister proceeded to cry like somebody was murdering him – in.the.parking.lot!!!! Even the car guard approached the car to see what was going on. It probably sounded like we were torturing the poor child, shame. I wasn’t prepared to leave it for another day though because his hair was already starting to grow over the scab and stitches and so we persevered until eventually mummy came to the rescue and cut the stitches out myself about 25minutes later. It took aunty holding onto him and trying to keep his head still, wet wipes to wipe at the snot en trane (the closest thing on hand to a tissue) and promises of a really big surprise to get it all done but you know what…we did it and FOR FREE!!!!! Needless to say, without the commotion from master Howe, it would have actually been a piece of cake, but what fun would that have been?!?!
So we saved at least R189, the stitches are out, and we’ve all lived through this trauma. I’m really hoping there’s no next time for this, but having two boys, I highly doubt it. At least I’ll know how to remove the stitches in future. Now just to learn how to sew them in myself 😉