Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Real-life learning

My friend calls me with a shaky voice. She just fell off the ladder (they are building their home right now) and hurt her leg. She needs to go to the hospital right now. The girls and I, worried, rush to her and help her climb in the Westfalia. Once we get there, Mara helps me find a wheelchair to bring her in. We wait while she is in triage. The girls have never been to the E.R. before and they want to know what will happen to our friend. We can see through the window what the nurse is doing. What is that thing she puts on her finger (oxygen saturation), does it hurt? We talk about x-rays and that men with a bloody hand wrapped in homemade bandages and that little baby with a cut on his face. Mathilde offers my friend to hold her water bottle while she searches for something in her purse (this little girl is so sensitive to others!). And we leave her there in a room full of people, while ambulances rush in and we wonder how long she will have to wait...

Our girls have been worried about her boys who stayed home, even if they were old enough to be home by themselves. "They looked worried, mama, we should call them to tell them the nurse said it probably wasn't broken." Which we do. Their papa is back from work, worried for his wife, feeling terrible that she was not able to reach him ("I had a feeling something was off at home this afternoon, he says, I feel aweful I wasn't there for her. I am always there for her..." They are such an amazing couple those two!). He brings the boy over while he goes there to meet her (the girls have set up the table and are quite excited to have their friends over to share corn on the cob with... "and maybe we can have those coconut rolls that you keep up high for desert, mama?". Aisha, my thoughtful little girl, says: "she must be hungry by now, we should pack her a lunch." And we do, a dream lunch for little girls: sesame sticks, chips, quinoa chocolate chips cookies and freshly-picked apples.

A few hours later, they came back home, without having even seen a doctor... Ambulances kept rushing in (there had been an accident in town) and the waiting time had increased to 9 hours (after having waited for 4 already...). Our free healthcare system is a blessing, but it comes with a different price tag... In moments like that, I truly miss the Yukon and its empty E.R., the smiles and familiar faces (at 18 months, Mathilde had cellulitis, a chicken pox complication, and had to go to the E.R. every 8 hours for an i.v. drop and she and us were treated like king and queens... and there was the croup attack night when Mara was 14 months old, and the amazing Indian doctor - the husband of our family doctor - that was funny, reassuring and so very nice with all of us - and no waiting time, of course!). Last summer when we were visiting the Yukon, I was admitted for a crazy painful migraine attack and we had to wait for 2 hours (the longest I had ever waited there). They had me wait in a dark room (much easier for migraines) and the nurse kept bringing me warmed blankets (like the ones they brought me when I gave birth to the twins in that same hospital) and saying how sorry she that I had to wait so long (there had be an helicopter accident that night and the son of one of our friend was involved...). If only she knew how bad it is in Quebec...

:: My little seed collector. Do you remember her idea for the traveler's garden? ::
:: We got introduced to THE board game: Agricola (by Uwe Rosenberg). We are hooked! ::
:: Lot of watercolor around here these days ::

:: Playing with her papa's flute ::

:: A really cool secret agent themed birthday party my friend organized for her son's 13th birthday ::


Earlier that same day, our friend Alex came as he does every week with his old ambulance full of organic fruits and veggies (he goes to the wholesallers in Montreal). It is always exciting for the girls to see all his treasures (yesterday he had delicious longans, pitayanas and grenadillas on top of the more usual fruits and veggies). He always give the girls something to try. Yesterday, we fell in love with his dates in coconut. Alex and I really understand each other. We are intense. We are people of convictions. We have big ideas and we are idealistic. I love to chat with him and we did just that for a good 2 hours yesterday while the girls made a special juice from starfruit, strawberries, blueberries and watermelon for their dad. They overheard most of our conversation and I was glad they did. I am so thankful our girls are part of the real life. Imagine the day they would have missed if they had been in school? So many life lessons in only a day!


 :: A gift we made for a little friend of ours, from this great pattern ::

2 comments:

L'équipe du Journal JOSE said...

***Imagine the day they would have missed if they had been in school?***

Le unschooling, une journée... imaginez... toute une vie! ;-)

Édith
xox

Catherine said...

Ahahaha! Edith! C'est exactement ça!