The other time that we almost lost Jon, (see http://www.dailydad.net/2013/the-day-we-almost-lost-jon/ for the first time), he was running from a girl at school. As fast as possible.
(This is not unusual for my son, a young man who tends to be pursued by the girls. http://www.dailydad.net/2012/too-young-to-marry/ and http://www.dailydad.net/2013/jons-pre-marital-woes-continue/ )
But during this partiuclar chase he crashed head-first into a cement step.
It was after school and I was picking up all three of the kids as usual and when I arrived a little girl asked me, ‘Have you seen Jon?’ and I said that I was just doing that very thing and she just smiled and kept walking.
(I later found that this was the girl who had chased Jon to his bloody fall.)
I then discovered that my son was in the nursing station, where I found him so covered in blood that one could never tell what colour his pants and shirt might have been earlier that day.
The head wound needed some sewing up and so I took Jon to a Kampala clinic, that is an African clinic, where the good doctor informed me that Jon would need an anesthetic.
The doctor explained, yes, Jon could either have a local injection, a needle to the head, that is a needle right in the place that his head had split — which we know every boy, even the bravest, is hoping to have one day — or Jon could have a general anesthetic, a needle in his shoulder, which, at that moment, sounded like a double-scoop of chocolate ice-cream.
Jon made it clear which one he preferred by screaming over and over and over at increasing decibel levels.
Through that, I heard the doctor note to me that there might be some small side-effects from the shoulder injection, the general anesthetic, like some slow-waking or a bad dream.
Having a doctor in the family can help in a moment like this, so I then phoned My Bride who was one country east, in Kenya, and literally stepping aboard a plane and about to lose phone contact.
Ketamine, I said, when she asked me what general anesthetic the doctor planned on using. At which time she informed me that Ketamine was barely used in many countries anymore, and, without the supervision and equipment not found in a place like Uganda, could kill our boy.
Needless to say, Jon got the other option, the needle to the head, while Daddy held him down and looked into in his big eyes and listened to the repeated screams ‘No injection Daddy!!’ and then finally watched his forehead get stitched up.
On that afternoon, Jon was the bravest boy on this side of the Atlantic. And we had the sort of father-son bonding that lasts to this writing.
And, yes, my son is still running from those dangerous girls.