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On Your Table Blog

August 16, 2023

Swing and a hit

Swing and a hit

By Kelli Bowen

While on our summer vacation getaway this summer, we were able to experience another first: Dickinson urgent care clinic.

You see of all the things my children wanted to do on vacation, mini-golf was one of the top of their list for some reason.  It made sense for Miss A.  Last year we went and she looked like a young phenom, hitting 3 holes-in-one while playing the course.  She looked at us and shrugged, “What? You just hit the ball into the hole.”

There we were with our putters in hand, Miss A said: “I get to go first!”  She lined up her club and ball, while I took a picture.

The wind up

Then I instinctively ducked backwards as her club came flying at my head on her backswing…backswing??? Oh n---  I thought as she followed through with a powerhouse swing ala driving range and sent the ball flying, and the club on the follow-through knocked Miss E in the face.

Down like a sack of bricks, Miss E hit the ground and it sunk in what had happened. I grabbed Miss E and got her standing up and told Hubby to get ice. He went for the office, I held Miss E up to get an inspection. If you have followed me at all, you should come to realize, when it comes to head injuries, I never leave a victim lie. Then I told Miss A to grab the gear as both girls were uncontrollably crying.

We hobbled across the street where a couple workers were grabbing ice packs and started asking questions. Then the EMTs showed up. I went into the ambulance with Miss E while Hubby and Miss A were outside filling out an incident report. The manager said he’d refund us the mini golf fee or let us play later, or whatever. I’m sure the sight of bawling children, one with an ever-increasing lump, wasn’t in his Top 10 hopes for that morning. 

In the bus, the first responders gave Miss E a blanket and ice packs while checking her vitals. Mr EMT told me he couldn’t tell me what to do, but he’d suggest having her looked at. I said I agreed and we’d take her in. I signed the release stating I was refusing care. Mr EMT made sure to tell me that I was “responsible for going forward, including any further injuries or death.” This is NOT a tactful thing to say in front of an injured and potentially concussed 11-year-old. Miss EMT and I shared an eyeroll and a “Dude!!” and then we loaded Hubby, Miss A, Miss E, and myself into the pickup for a fast trip to Dickinson.

I climbed in the back between the girls who were playing Dueling Banjos but bawling. Miss E from the obvious knock to her melon and Miss A for causing harm to her pedestal-ascending big sister. Three years earlier, I was in the backseat of another vehicle with Miss A for a head injury that resulted in days in the hospital and weeks of after-care, so that’s where all of our minds were and the implications of this mini golf game was very real.

Miss E and I get dropped off at the front door of the clinic and we go in. We’re brought into a room right away and the Nurse Practitioner on duty takes a look at her very soon upon arrival. She looks at the things, asks me all of the questions again, shines lights, has fingers squeezed, and says she thinks it’s just a bad bump. Take some OTC pain meds, take it easy, don’t watch screens or read for the rest of the day to let her head rest. She thought shopping or the National Park would be a healthy distraction. Watch for trouble-signals and give her little sister more space on the mini golf course. 

That’s what we did. At the end of the day, we went back to the putt-putt to give them an update and the manager came out relieved at the prognosis and Miss E decided she wanted to mini golf, so that’s exactly what we did…from a safe distance.

Back at it, but from a safer distance! 

Kelli Bowen Kelli makes her home in Cass County with her husband, two daughters (11 and 8) and two dogs. She works for a regional seed company by day and tries to be an alright mom, wife, friend and writer by night.

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