I’m standing in the kitchen, prepping burgers for the grill when I hear that terrible cry from the living room.  Daniel has fallen, and it’s the awful, “I’m really hurt” cry that I rarely have to hear.  I come running.

He’s on the floor at the foot of a piece of exercise equipment we had already decided to throw out this weekend.  His chin is gashed, and his mouth, open with that awful scream, isn’t opening evenly.  Half of his mouth is wrong.  I sweep him up and carry him to the couch, because I need to sit down.

I rock him to calm him enough for me to see what’s going on, and all I can think is this is a really awful day to need the ER, and he’s just so tiny.  Watching his sweet mouth, that I know like it is engraved on my soul, not working right is turning my insides to jelly.

It doesn’t take long to assess that his jaw and teeth and tongue and spirit are just fine.  He demolishes an entire bag of wipes, taking swipe after swipe at his scratched chin with them, nurses like a champ, and delightfully chomps through a bowl of grapes.  He might wind up with a scar and some ugly bruising, but nothing more.

Fifteen minutes after that scream, I’m back in the kitchen working, and Daniel is back to tromping about the house, barely subdued.  I, though, feel drained.  In the few minutes on that couch, it feels like I aged in hours, not minutes.  Everything’s fine, and yet I need a nap to recover from it.