The original ending of my last post was the line " Well, at least we still have our health".
I looked at what I'd written and promptly deleted it. I was sure that a bit of snark like that (I meant it sincerely, but it just didn't come off that way) would surely earn me a big smack-down from the Powers That Be.
Apparently, the Powers That Be don't just read the final, published post. They read the draft over my shoulder as I write. (You'd think they could find a better use for their time, but there you go. )
I know this is true because the day after I wrote that and erased it two seconds later, the Powers conspired to make me regret my lack of appreciation for the good health of my family. They did it like this: They put Mallory on the school bus on Monday morning and put it into the other kids' heads not to let her have a seat. (Actually, it's a frequent situation. The older kids put their book bags on the seats and don't let the younger ones sit. The victims are too shy/scared to insist and the driver ignores the problem).
Then the Powers made the child standing at the next bus stop temporarily invisible, so that the driver would only see the boy after he'd passed by and then feel forced to hit the breaks with great force. Their clever plan worked and the sudden stop hurled Mallory backwards onto the floor. The back of her head hit the edge of a step and the blood was impressive. I'm told that every girl on the bus was in tears.
I know all this because Alexa was there, of course. I only got all these details much later, though. The first I heard of it all was at about 8:30 am. The phone rang and when I picked it up, the secretary at the junior high was on the line saying "This is the school. Your daughter wants to talk to you."
A weeping Alexa tearfully told me "Mallory is hurt bad, Mommy".
I, of course, imagined the worst.
The absolute worst.
Then, she told me Mallory had hit her head, there was lots of blood and she was at the hospital.
This was still not sounding good.
I asked to talk to the secretary. And adult could help me out, right? Wrong. The woman knew NOTHING. The kids are only the responsibility of the school once they come in the gate, I was told. The school transport is contracted out to a private company.
So, good luck with that.
Luckily for my sanity, my call-waiting went off just then. It was the doctor at the medical clinic in the town where the school is. She reassured me that Mallory was there, relatively fine, just a bit hysterical and in need of a few stitches .
I got there in a flash and found quickly Mallory by marching through the place yelling her name (btw: Works great! They brought me to her right away!) Mal was huddled on a table, weeping piteously, asking if she was going to die soon. The doctors found her melodrama a bit much. I did my best to calm her down and comfort her. (What worked best was a promise to read "Bunnicula" to her when we got back home.)
She ended up with five stitches and walked out of the doctor's office looking like the victim of a severe disaster. Her hair was matted pink with blood and it was smeared all over her face and covered her coat. And don't forget that half her front tooth had been shattered on Saturday.
She was fairly miserable, but I was just feeling relieved.
I knew we'd gotten off lightly.