Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

My family  spent last night at a hotel. We had brunch brought in to my grandmother's apartment. in early afternoon we  performed my grandmother's favorite musical selections. A chef came in to prepare dinner, which went without event.

My grandfather had been in church meetings all day. The plan was for him to be driven to a home he and my grandmother maintain in Utah County and to stay the night there, but he apparently suffered a bad case of indigestion and instead asked to be taken back to the Salt Lake City apartment, where my family still was.

Dinner had been cleared away, and my grandfather was poking around in the refrigerator for a snack allegedly for his chihuahua, as I'm not sure why he'd want to eat anything if he had indigestion. Not knowing he was in the kitchen, I walked in to get a glass of water for myself.  The chihuahua growled at me. She seems to growl at everyone except my grandparents.  My grandfather, apparently believing that I had done something to provoke the chihuahua, took a few steps toward me and kicked me hard in the left shin.

My father was walking into the kitchen at that point and witnessed the entire incident, including my non-provocation of the dog. I was at that point on the floor, holding my left shin, but I wasn't actually injured. Sometimes something hurts a lot right when it happens, but no actual injury occurs other than a bruise and maybe a little swelling. My dad picked me up and carried me to the living room. He put me on the living room couch. He told my mom and my brother that we were leaving and that everyone needed to say goodbye to grandma. We all kissed grandma goodbye. My mother had a puzzled expression on her face but asked no questions. My grandma did ask why we were leaving so abruptly. My dad told her than grandpa had kicked me and that he [my dad] couldn't have his children in a house with a person who would hurt them. My grandmother tried to talk him into staying, but he told her they would talk again soon, but that we had to go. He also told her she as welcome to visit us at our home at any time.

As we got into our rental car and drove to the hotel, my dad explained to my mom what had happened . The two of them debated whether they were mandated reporters of child abuse in regard to this particular incident. Their conclusion was that it was not a clear-cut situation. Their course of action was to take me to an urgent care clinic and to be straightforward about what happened, so that if any reporting to a child welfare agency needed to be done, the burden would fall upon the health care providers. As my dad did not examine my leg, but someone else did, he was not a healthcare provider in this situation. There also could have been legal ramifications for my dad had no one examined my leg, but he covered that base by taking me to the clinic. I really didn't need medical care, but it was the best way out of a sticky situation.  The doctor didn't even X-ray my leg. He gave me an ice pack and told my parents to give me Ibuprofen if my leg continued to hurt.

Had he kicked my right leg, which was previously broken and then re-injured, he could have caused problems, but my "mild contusion," as noted on the clinic's bill, will mend itself  in a relatively short period of time.

Does anyone other than I wonder if my grandather is sufficiently sound-of-mind to be helping to manage the operations of a world-wide church?

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