By Diane Ako
Every time we vacation with my cousin's family, some minor tragedy befalls my kid. Last time, she needed to go to the ER for a head gash. This time, she stuck a bead in her ear. Yes, a bead.
I was sleeping (because I'm such a lightweight, three-year-olds outlast me) when Claus turned on the bedroom light and dumped Olivia on the bed. "She stuck a bead in her ear," he declared. He poured oil in the ear and turned her on her side, hoping it would slide out. He tried to suck it out with a Capri Sun straw.
What?!?, I thought. This was like, four hours into the staycation and already a crisis? After waiting a few minutes, he turned her back onto her side so he could look into the ear. Nope, still quite lodged. The whole time, all the little kiddies were crowding the bed trying to see what's going on.
I called my nurse friend, Lori, who practices female health care. "If she's not in pain, go tomorrow. You'll be suck in the ER all night," she said. "And you have to stop taking vacations with this cousin."
The next morning, instead of enjoying the beach, the three of us drove to the nearest medical clinic. I kid you not, but as we strapped Olivia in the car seat, she started singing Beat It. I'm sure one of the cousins taught her that.
The doctor easily and quickly removed the bead with small forceps. Olivia was a very good girl and did not move her head at all.
Other people's critera for vacation destinations include proximity to activities or price point. When we vacation with Cousins, we just have to make sure we're near a medical facility.
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