Friday, February 28, 2014

Wing And A Prayer




My 12-y.o. son has his right arm in a sling.

My wife and I think he hurt it a couple of weeks ago. His baseball team scrimmaged another team and he pitched straight through an entire line-up without a break. My son throws pretty hard. It was a cold night. We iced his arm afterwards like we always do. My son said he felt fine.

The truth was, he didn’t.

He would occasionally admit to soreness. We would use ice and rest. Then he would say he felt fine.

The truth was, he just wanted to play baseball.

He had a tournament last week, playing four games in two days. He did great at the plate but couldn’t get anything on his fastball. By Sunday evening, after the tournament was over, he finally admitted his arm had been hurting all this time. He mentioned it as it hurt to swing a bat, too.

I took him the doctor the next day. He was diagnosed with acute inflammation of his shoulder and elbow. Thankfully, nothing was broken or torn. Still, we shut him down to give him time to heal. The doctor suggested about a week.

I’m mad at myself about it. There’s part of me that should have realized he was taxing himself during the scrimmage. Though I wasn’t keeping a tally, I knew his pitch count was high. And the coach from the other team that was calling balls and strikes stopped any pretense of fairness halfway through the line-up, meaning my son was giving it everything he had and having non-swings called a ball. However, I said nothing. For the weeks that followed, neither did my son.

On Sunday, we’ll see if there’s still any pain. If there’s no pain, we can start doing rehab exercises. Maybe even soft tosses. He has a game on Monday. I can’t see him being ready to play, even if there’s no pain. The injury is minor and I pray he’s not hurt more seriously. Still, I want to make sure he’s okay before he goes back on the field. It’s scary to think of it getting worse.

Even scarier was when the x-ray technician told me how often kids come into the office with the same injury.

I’ve since learned there are things like little leaguer’s elbow and little leaguer’s shoulder. Recuperation can take a couple of months. We aren’t at that point yet.

I hope we don’t get to it.

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