Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Ice Skating at the Galleria

*For some reason I was able to write this post, publish it, but when I went back to look at it, it was gone. Weird! So, here I go again...I'll try to remember exactly what I wrote the first time if you were one of the ones that managed to read it before it disappeared into the cyber black hole. 

Before we got out of school for Christmas break, my friend, Sarah, and I planned a fun mini-vacation for us and our kiddos. We were going to be brave and drive six hours (with four kids in a confined space) to Grapevine, Texas, to see the Gaylord Texan's ICE exhibit. We made all the plans, purchased the tickets, and started counting down the days until we left. Our kids would ask us everyday if today was the day they were going to go to Texas. Finally, it was THE day. 

We left that morning and after six hours of driving, multiple showings of The Lorax, several pee breaks, endless "Are we there yet?" questions, and one stop for lunch we finally made it! Rather than go straight to our hotel for the night, we decided to head to the Galleria Mall first and let the kiddos make some memories at the ice skating rink :) Little did we know, we'd definitely make a memory we wouldn't forget. 

The Christmas tree in the middle of the ice skating rink.

The line to go ice skating was really long, but this was something all of us had really been looking forward to so the wait was worth it. Finally, we bought our tickets, got our skates, laced them up and we were ready to go hit the ice! 

Eli, Cooper, Clayton, Avery

Avery's skates were the tiniest things ever. She was the talk of the ice rink!

Unfortunately for us, our skating adventure lasted about 10 minutes before Eli literally hit the ice :( Everything was fine at first, he was holding onto the rail and I was holding his other arm and skating beside him. He kept wanting to do things on his own and there was nothing I could say to convince him otherwise. He didn't want me holding his arm, didn't want to hold the railing, didn't want to skate in front of me, etc. He wanted to do it on his own. I let go for just a second one time and he did okay. He skated about a foot and then started to slip so I grabbed him. After this he went into what I call "freak out mode." He kept being overly dramatic and would do his feet really fast back and forth to where he kept losing his balance even while I was holding him. I finally talked him into just being still and when he was he was able to skate a little better. He wanted me to let go of him so I did. He might have skied two feet away when the worst happened. He lost his balance and fell. Thankfully, his knees hit first, but then somehow his body twisted and the side of his head hit the ice. You talk about quick reflexes...before I could even process what was happening I was at his side picking him up. That adrenaline is some strong stuff. Some rink official dude was nearby when it happened and while I was reaching for Eli to pick him up, he kept saying, "Don't pick him up. Don't pick him up." Well, no sooner had the words left his mouth, that I had Eli up in my arms looking at the bump. Then Mr. Rink Official said, "Oh, great...you picked him up." I looked at that guy dumbfounded and said, "Well, yeah I picked him up. He's my kid!" I know he was just trying to follow policy and do his job,  but look dude, my kid got hurt. He didn't have a life threatening injury, so I'm picking him up...end of story. I knew immediately that Eli was going to be okay. He cried immediately when it happened (good sign), there was a visible raised bump where he hit his head (another good sign), and he hadn't thrown up (another good sign). Mr. Official Rink Dude picked Eli up (I guess since I broke the "don't pick your kid up" rule, he thought he could too) and skated with him in his arms to the first aid room. I followed behind them as quickly as I could...this was only the second time in my life I had ever skated.

Once we got to the room, they gave us an ice pack to apply to Eli's bump and then they started asking him all these questions to make sure he was okay. He was fine, just scared from what happened. When they left, I started doing a quick assessment of Eli's injury myself. I went through the "What to do if your kid hits their head "checklist I know by heart now and Eli passed every single one. I think other than a bruise and probably some soreness, he was perfectly fine. My phone's battery was so low, but I went ahead and called Josh to let him know what had happened. He was actually on his way to Colorado with some buddies of his for a ski trip. He didn't answer his phone, so I sent him two texts, and snapped two pictures of Eli's injury. Unfortunately, my phone died after I told Josh Eli had fallen and we were in the infirmary. Oops! I felt so bad because I knew he would see that text, try to call, but wouldn't get through. I knew I had to find Sarah's phone so I could tell him everything was okay.

My poor little guy :( 

I felt SO BAD that his ice skating experience had turned out awful. He kept saying "I don't want to ice skate ever again!" I assured him that we were through with ice staking for now, but that one day in the distant future he was going to try again :) 

After making sure Eli was okay, we turned our skates back in, got our refund, and went to find Sarah and her kids. Unbeknownst to us, because Eli had fallen, they made everybody clear the ice so they could resurface it. We finally found Sarah and her kids skating near the railing and explained what had happened to us. I borrowed her phone to call Josh so I could reassure him that everything was okay and then we watched Sarah's oldest, Clayton, skate all around the rink. He loved it! I'm just hopeful that Eli will give it another go one day :) 

Once our ice skating adventure was officially over, we found some food, ate, and then made our way to our hotel. All the kiddos bathed and put on their warm pajamas and then it was time for bed! I kept watching Eli to make sure he was okay and once I saw he was his normal, happy self, I quit worrying. Well, until my brain decided to play a fun game of "Let's imagine all the things that could have happened to your child..." Not fun....Let's just say that the rest of the night was spent thanking God for keeping Eli safe and found.

We'd had a long, busy, eventful day making memories with each other. We all needed lots of rest because tomorrow was going to be full of fun and excitement! Good night from the Atkins and Wilsons!

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