When I was in first grade a classmate, Carson, broke his arm during recess. I can’t remember the circumstances surrounding how the accident occurred but what I do remember is him showing up to school the next day in a shiny, white plaster cast. During the day we all took turns signing our names on it. As happens with kids of that age, his cast became the envy of everyone in the class.
The envy didn’t last long. Within a couple of weeks Carson was complaining about his arm itching. And then there was the smell. Since he couldn’t get the cast wet, his arm under the cast was hard to clean. I remember sitting by him at lunch and telling him his arm smelled and him explaining to me that it was hard to clean. I think I still scooted down bench a foot or two to eat my lunch.
At some point the cast came off and life in first grade returned to normal. What I do remember from that incident is that Carson seemed uncomfortable enough wearing a cast that I hoped I’d never break an arm or any other part of my body that would require me to get a cast. Even though everyone could sign it, it just didn’t seem worth it.
Fast forward to 2013.
Last Sunday my 5-year-old daughter fell off her scooter and broke her arm. Thankfully, she didn’t need pins or any other surgery. The doctor took x-rays and put her arm in a splint. A few days later she went to get a cast.
How times have changes since I was a kid.
I came home from work on Thursday and discovered that not only did she have a cast that looked like an exploding rainbow, the material it’s made from is waterproof. She can take a bath or shower, swim, or do any other water activities without worry. For the most part, she’s going on with life like nothing ever happened to it. And though I still hope I never break an arm or any other part of my body, I have to say that wearing a cast doesn’t seem as bad as it did when I was in first grade.