Freak Occurance…. Overcome By Guilt!

We had a freakish occurence, or rather accident on Saturday evening, little Ava almost lost two toes and I spent the rest of the evening overcome by guilt and emotionally beating myself up.

She’d had an odd day on Saturday, slept until 08h20 from 7pm the previous evening, and the late rising had thrown her whole routine out. As a result she only took two short naps of about an hour each the entire day and had refused her late afternoon bottle, bucking and writhing from exhaustion, eventually I gave up trying to force her to drink her bottle and put her down to sleep a while. The rest of the day progressed as normal. She her tiny bowl of rice porridge at 17h30, had her bath and played with daddy at 18h00 and by 18h30 she was drinking her last bottle for the day and getting sleepy. She was quite restless on this bottle but she often is when she’s over tired. Walter refuses to giver her this bottle as this is normally when she’s at her most difficult, he calls it rigor mortis, she arches her back, writhes and grabs her ears. So there was nothing out of the ordinary.

At 7pm I put her down to sleep and she dropped off straight away. Oddly at 19h30 she started to cry, Walter went into her room to check on her, he popped her dummy back in and walked out, she started crying again, he went back in and repeated but by the time he’d walked back into the lounge she was yowling. I went into her room to see what was going on and when she saw me, she literally started screaming bloody murder. There were giant tears rolling down her cheeks and she screamed and screamed and screamed. The kind of scream I’ve heard before, the kind of screaming she made when she was held down for 30 minutes while I attempted to not punch a nurse who repeatedly pricked her entire body in an attempt to draw blood when she was jaundiced. So I knew something was wrong.

I immediately picked her up and started trying to comfort her, the harder I tried comforting her, the more she screamed. I put my lips to her forehead but she had no fever, I could feel myself start to panic, I knew something was wrong, but what? I don’t know what made me do it, but I lay her down on her changing mat, turned the lights on and started taking her out of her BabaBag with the intention of undressing her to see if I could see what was causing her such terrible pain. As I removed her from the BabaBag I almost passed out from what I saw…………..

She’s at that age where her feet are in perpetual motion, she’s literally running on the spot constantly. What must have happened is that a loose piece of cotton thread from the inside of the BabaBag got wrapped around her little and second last toes and the more she “ran on the spot” the more they tangled around her toes, to the point where both toes were swollen and distorted and turning black!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I don’t know how I got the cotton off but I did and in seconds she started to calm down and I started to cry. I took Arnica Cream and gently rubbed the two tiny toes till the colour started returning to normal, but the more I rubbed her toes and cried the more she lay there gazing up at me with that beautiful, gummy smile.

Suffice to say…. she will, from now on, be sleeping with socks on, I don’t care how warm it is!!!!!


  • ksmind

    April 12, 2010 at 7:10 am

    Oh shite!! I tell you, this parenting thing is sent to test us.. they get into all kinds of trouble (without meaning to!) that we have to rescue them from!!.. sorry you feel so traumatized, but the guilt really isn’t necessary (I know that means little but its true)! Accidents happen – well done for sorting it all out so lovingly.. seems she wasn’t affected in a long term way at all 🙂

  • TJ

    April 12, 2010 at 8:25 am

    Auw shame, Sharon! It must be horrible! Whenever Xavier cries I always check for my hair wrapped around his extremeties if I can’t figure out the problem because my hair is so long.

    I would’ve been overcome by guilt too, but the fact is that you saw it before it was too late! And thank goodness she cried because of it.

    I hope you can get over the guilt, it’s not your fault and you know that! Ava is grateful her Mommy helped her!

  • mayflowerladybugs

    April 12, 2010 at 8:25 am

    O my word! The very same thing happened to Olivia, only she was wearing a babygrow and there was a thread on the inside of the foot that wrapped around her toe. I often think that but for mother’s instinct there would be a lot more mishaps with our kids. Glad she is OK!

  • lea2109

    April 12, 2010 at 8:54 am

    Ouch, that sounds so sore! I’m so pleased she is okay. I’ll never forget the first time I was cutting Bianca’s toe nails and I just nipped the one and of course it was bleeding a little bit and she cried for a little bit and then it was all forgotten (for her that is). I felt guilty for months on end.

  • Sharon

    April 12, 2010 at 9:01 am

    I knew something was seriously wrong because whe I picked her up she grabbed me on my cheek and was scratching and pinching my face with the effort of all the screaming.
    And I was so scared to remove the cotton cos I was convinced from how swollen and black her toes were that they were going to fall off!!! 🙂

  • marina1605

    April 12, 2010 at 9:03 am

    Shame Sharon, just the thought made me want to cry too! I can imagine how guilty you must feel, but it really isn’t your fault and thank goodness you sorted it out in time. Poor little sausage.

  • yvettene

    April 12, 2010 at 9:06 am

    Gosh that must have been so awful for you. I would have gone into a panic but I guess being a mother you get the strength and courage to do what must be done.

  • tanyakov

    April 12, 2010 at 9:19 am

    Shame for you and shame for Ava! Glad she’s okay now and that her toes are in tact. Fortunately babies are very forgiving and very forgetful – it’s us who remember their pain and carry the guilt. Shew – the guilt thing never ends, does it?

  • trishdg

    April 12, 2010 at 9:21 am

    OMG Sharon thank goodness you were able to find out what was causing the pain and fix it! It must have been really very eeina for Ava and scary for you. Yay Mommy to the rescue!!!

  • charnetrollip

    April 12, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    o my word!!!! you would think the check the bababags for ANY loose cotton threads!

    That is sooooooooooooo scary!!!!!! shooo thats hectic! went cold reding this

    Hugs to Ava

  • thebsdiaries

    April 12, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    Ag poor nunu! wow you see you can’t control a damn thing!!! Shaz when my son cracked his skull I just about curled up and died from guilt. And every time they woke him up in the hospital (every hour) and he smiled his watery little smile at them, I died all over again. Parenting ain’t for sissies.

    • Sharon

      April 12, 2010 at 1:42 pm

      OMG! Yes I relate! When I was rubbing her little toes to try and get the circulation back, it must have been damn sore and all she did was show me that big gummy smile even though there were huge crocodile tears on her cheeks. Even when I think about it now I want to start crying all over again!

  • darylfaure

    April 12, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    Oh shame Sharon! What a dreadful experience for both of you. Please don’t beat yourself up. I know all too well the feelings of guilt. Dylan has fallen off the bed 3 times while I have been watching him, and I now get an almost nightly nightmare where I think he is falling off the bed, and I always end up grabbing my husband trying to catch him in my nightmare.

  • Me

    April 12, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    There are no words Shaz…I can only imagine how long it took for your heart to work it’s way from your throat back to your chest!

    Big hugs


  • orbit365

    April 12, 2010 at 10:28 pm

    Shame man…I can feel your anxiety when reading this. You must have got such a fright!
    Thank God you could rescue the situation.
    Sending you and Ava lots of hugs.


  • ldr1604

    April 13, 2010 at 10:52 am

    Oh my goodness, how horrible! Glad Ava is okay but it must have been a terrible shock to you. I have heard this sort of thing can also happen to little fingers with those hand-knitted little jerseys that kind oumas knit.

  • maggsbunny

    April 15, 2010 at 11:40 am

    This post was such riveting reading, Sharon. So glad it turned out like it did. So scary, though. I love how she communicated to you that there was something seriously wrong and how you just knew! I love how she trusted you to sort it out and how she smiled at you when you were massaging in the arnica cream. Precious little darling. And so beautiful. She is growing up to be such a beauty. Loving your new ‘uncensored’ blog, btw 🙂


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