Yesterday during Thomas' soccer game, one of his teammates (I'll call him J) went down. When the boy began screaming, the ref called the coach onto the field, and then his parents. I was near the other end of the field, but heard his mom's gasp and both parents shouting, "Call 911!"
Word came through the crowd that he had broken his ankle, and then that it was his leg. Apparently J and a bigger boy (the injured kid and my son are the smallest players) had been kicking at the ball at the same time, and J's lower leg had taken the full force of the kick. His dad later said that his leg was "hanging" at a right angle.
Unfortunately the game was being played at a school in a location that can only be classified as boondocks, and it took nearly half an hour for the ambulance to arrive. J was a trooper, and I was really impressed with how maturely his teammates behaved as well. They sat on the field a respectful distance away and spoke in hushed tones, and they cheered J as he was loaded into the ambulance. Thomas later said that they dedicated their play to J when the game resumed.
It didn't help matters any that I got lost on the way home. We were deep in two-lane-road Children of the Corn country, and after it got dark I missed a turn somewhere. I pulled off at a tiny store and tried to use my iPhone's fancy map feature, but couldn't get a signal. A slightly scary man was shoveling hay by the store, and I asked him if he knew how to get to the road I should have turned on.
"Naw, 'n 'em in the store ain't gone know neither." OK, mister, just back away with the pitchfork. The two customers I'd seen come out of the store had been shirtless (I guess in Cuckoo, Virginia [I SWEAR I did not make that up] they are above the no shirt/shoes/service law.) and I was a little scared of how they'd treat us city folk so I left, trusting my sense of direction.
I managed to get us back on track, and we get to make the two-hour round trip again next week for the tournament. Minus poor J, who is a pretty good player.
Just as an aside, there was a woman sitting near me who kept commenting to her grandsons on how "teeny-tiny" Thomas and J were, not realizing that I was mom to one of them. "Ain't they afraid they'll get hurt by them bigger boys?" Both boys are small for their age, but both are fierce players, and I had to wonder afterwards if she felt like she jinxed J. I am also fairly certain it was her grandson who accidentally kicked him. I feel really bad for him too.