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Surgery and Stitches. Just a Typical Week in the Land of Chaos

Arm full of iv's after surgery
Dark and moody sky over the hospital the day after Chuck's surgery.

It was a Dark and Stormy Day…

Chuck had surgery last Thursday. Don’t worry, it was a scheduled surgery planned for the slow time in the construction business. Everything went well. Pain was a struggle initially after surgery and he ended up spending two nights in the hospital.

Staff only doors closing as Chuck heads back for surgery.

Saturday morning we were waiting on the three zillions pieces of paperwork it takes to be discharged from the hospital when I suddenly had a facetime call from Jubilee.

Chuck two days after surgery.

Hello? This is Jubilee and I Need Stitches

Her face popped on and she was rather, ahem, hysterical. Between her sobs and yelling, I managed to here the words stitches, knife, cut. I asked her to show me her finger, but between blood, hospital wifi, and a jiggling camera, I was unable to confirm nor deny the need for medical intervention. I asked her to have someone else in the house take a look. Tucker (14) and Kalina (18) both said it needed stitches.

Great. I was at the hospital already, was I not?


Our family has a long history of stitches. Everyone in the house (with the exception, perhaps, of Apollo) can take one look at an injury and determine whether or not it needs stitches. How did we come by such a unique skill set, you might ask? The way every skill in honed…experience.

Fourteen Kids and a Billion Stitches

Out of the 11 children we’ve raised since infancy, (three of our children were adopted as teens) only three have avoided stitches. Here is the current tally.

Judah, at age 10, got 11 stitches when he sliced open his hand and nicked an artery chopping celery. He was showing off his fancy karate-like moves to his siblings. I don’t think they were impressed.

Enoch's arm stitched up after being ripped on a screw.

Enoch has had five stitches in his foot (cut it while running around barefoot outside) and four in his arm (cut on a screw sticking out of a board).

Kalina had two stitches in her eyebrow at age one. We were homeschooling, at the table. I was teaching the older kids to count change and they were putting it in a glass jar. Kalina, in her enthusiasm, was dancing and moving her head back and forth…right into the rim of the jar.

Hezekiah had three stitches in his chin when he fell down in a gym and another three in his head when he attempted to sneak out of his room during naptime. Spoiler alert…we found out he was out of bed.

Stitches in the bottom of Avi's foot.

Avi has had three stitches in her head when, after running through the house screaming, a giant conch shell that had belonged to my grandfather, fell on her head. And she had five stitches in her foot from running around barefoot outside. And most recently she had three stitches in her finger after putting it in a glass jar…

Tucker has had three stitches in his finger at age three when he picked up the sewing blade I had just set down and ran his finger along the edge. He, in a remarkable feat for such an active boy, managed to sleep through the actual stitches.

Apollo with stitches near his eyebrow.

Apollo has had stitches twice, in his face. Once from falling against our brick hearth and another time from falling against our LEGO table.

Getting Stitches at Urgent Care

Jubilee waiting for stitches at the urgent care clinic.

Thankfully, Kalina was home when Jubilee cut her finger and was able to drive her to the hospital. She brought Jubilee up to Chuck’s room and after one look at her finger, I concurred with Kalina and Tucker’s diagnosis…it needed stitches.

Jubilee Snapchatting her stitches
Dr: Are you taking pictures? Jubilee: No Me: She’s Snapchatting friends

Kalina ended up staying with Chuck and bringing him home from the hospital while I drove Jubilee just down the road to urgent care for four stitches.

Sadly, just a typical day here in the land of chaos



  1. Stephanie

    Stitches stitches…..My son last year was in his senior year of basketball. He had never had stitches before. In the first ninety secs of his first game, he was elbowed by an opponent….gushing blood everywhere. 7 stitches above the left eye. NO JOKE……ten days later…..he was at practice and bonked heads with a teammate….5 stitches in the EXACT SAME PLACE above the OTHER eye. Now he has symmetry of scars…….ARG

  2. suzanwarnes4703

    I think our most bizarre set of stitches occurred when my son had something fall from above and land on his razor sharp chef’s knife. The knifed flew into the air and cut his middle finger on his dominant hand right to the bone and included much microsurgery. Because it was a workers’ compensation claim they truly messed up and he waited over two days for the repair. By then he was very hungry, thirsty and well nigh on hysterical. He is on the spectrum and is needle phobic. It was a fun few weeks.

  3. Sarah

    I’m think I’m more impressed you remembered everyone’s stitches! I have forgotten over the years and the boys will talk about their injuries and I’m like “huh. Being able to tel if it needs stitches just seems natural. Like breathing. No memories of the million times I learned to identify it.” Lol

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