Be warned, this is likely to be a really, really long post. Before I get into it, let me say that God is great. He is awesome and He provides. As much of a struggle as this weekend was for us, it could have been so much worse.
Here's our weekend in a really big nutshell.
On Friday night, we dropped Abby off for Parents' Night Out at the Raleigh Iceplex. (Yes, I'm giving the name because I want other parents to know what we went through.) She attended a couple of weeks ago and we didn't experience any problems. This time, we dropped her off with the same staff member and didn't have any concerns. She was there from 6-11pm. They skated from 8-10pm. When Mike picked her up at 11pm, her right hand had two bled-through band-aids and she was just standing around in the corner (very quietly, which ISN'T Abby). He asked what happened and the teenager working said she got scraped and she should be fine. I think he did mention he put neosporin on the cut(s). Mike could tell he wasn't going to get very far talking to this staff member. [Let me say that I don't have an inherent problem with teenagers working in this environment. Abby attends the YMCA for track-out/school's out days and North Raleigh Gymnastics for Parents' Night Out. Both facilities are staffed by teenagers and we feel very comfortable with their training and believe that they are able to meet the responsibilities they been given.]
Mike brought Abby home. We both took a look and didn't like what we saw. It was hard to tell how deep the cuts were. Her hand was a little swollen, but obviously getting worse. After a call to the pediatrician after hours and a return call from a Triage Nurse, we headed to WakeMed Children's ED for x-rays. Along the way, a traffic law was broken (those pesky red lights). Mike had the immense luck to be pulled by a State Trooper. If you are familiar with NC State Troopers, you know they aren't known for being lax or easy going. The Trooper was kind enough to let us continue to the hospital before giving Mike the ticket. When we arrived, I took Abby inside. A few minutes later, Mike joined us...without a ticket. That Trooper was kind enough to give Mike a verbal warning. I was (and am) extremely thankful.
We waited in the ER for nearly 4 hours before being taken to a room. During that time, Abby had x-rays, but she wasn't allowed anything to drink. When the doctor finally came in, he had great news. No broken bones and no need for stitches!!! Yet another praise. The nurse came right in with a popsicle for Abby...she was quite thirsty by this point and thrilled with the pleasant treat. We headed home, so grateful.
On the way home, we stopped at the gas station near our neighborhood. I'm extra thankful for a husband who pays attention to the little things and who isn't as trusting as me (especially at 4am in East Raleigh). A car was parallel parked near the gas station, odd but not a huge red flag to this mama who was very tired and ready to get home. Mike was being very vigilant and he immediately saw cause for alarm. About 10 seconds later, we saw why. The passenger of the vehicle had shoplifted from the store and had been in the process of attempting to rob the cash register. In my mind, I was so thankful. Terrible things ran through my head...of how badly things could have turned out...if we were a few minutes earlier. But God kept us safe. An awesome thing.
We finally left to come home, only to realize that graffiti had been spray painted on a few of the signs at the entrance to our neighborhood. It really topped the evening/morning off. I'm so thankful to have a home, but I think God may be nudging us to consider moving to somewhere a little safer.
Abby snacked when we got home and watched a little TV. She went to bed shortly after and slept for quite a while. As a matter of fact, we all slept for quite a while. We didn't have any more major excitement for the rest of the weekend. I don't know if I could have taken much more.
Obviously, Abby won't be going back to the Iceplex for PNO again. I'm still trying to deal with the guilt that I'm feeling because I signed her up for it in the first place. She's such a sweet girl...she told me it wasn't my fault and that she still wants to ice skate...just somewhere else.
I'm still in awe of the blessings God bestowed on us during that evening, and I know that His hands were surrounding us the entire time.