Our 5 year old son had fallen and hit his face on a coffee table while playing a game of tag with his friends the night before Thanksgiving.
He got a cut right under his nose. We waited, unsure whether he would need stitches or not. If we had to go we were not looking forward to the crying that we were sure would ensue if we told him we were going.
He had a bad experience having blood drawn about a year ago, which pretty much destroyed his image of the hospital. However, we decided to go and tried our best to calm his fears on our way there.
Once we were in the room the suture technician, Doug Lehner, came in. As soon as he talked to our son it was as if we were no longer in a hospital. He was absolutely amazing!
We were pretty stressed at first not knowing what to expect but Doug told us to sit back and watch as he did his thing. The way he spoke to our son, making sure not to use any trigger words like “stitches” or “needles” or “shots.” Instead, they use string band-aids and whiskers.
It was all carefully discussed, but all in a way that seemed completely natural for him and very calming for our son.
He started by chasing down a rabbit in the room to borrow some of his tail to use to clean his boo-boo. While the numbing cream did its work he continued to talk to our son. He asked him if he was scared and showed him the items he was going to use to help fix him. He even let him hold each item as he was preparing his tools.
When it was finally time to stitch him up he laid him back and gave him special sunglasses to wear and then began the stitching. The only question my son asked was what the string was as he saw it in the air and Doug told him it was the whiskers he was going to use to fix him.
After that he laid there quietly and helped him count each “whisker” as he put it in and before you knew it, he was asleep.
Yes, he fell asleep during the last few stitches! We were completely amazed and we are still amazed at how smooth everything went all because of how awesome Doug is.
Our son was sure to tell everyone about his experience in the days to follow, letting everyone know that Doug gave him whiskers.
We can’t thank him enough. Not only did he do an excellent job taking care of our son and stitching up his cut beautifully, but he also handled everything in such a way that the situation was way less stressful on us.
Doug, you rock!