A few days ago, I fell, this time off the end of my driveway! It’s easy to forget about the little drop off that decorates all of the driveways in this park, but if you do, it is at your own peril!
I popped open the trunk in order to retrieve my groceries. Having pressed the OPEN button, I instinctively stepped back wards, in order to accommodate the swing of the hatch. THAT apparently was my most grievous error.
My heels registered the edge of the drop, but my brain did not. WHAM! Down I went, not just onto my butt, but the velocity of my tumble pushed me onto my back and head. Momentarily stunned, it was several seconds before I uttered some coarse descriptors.
Apparently my strenuous verbal offerings drew the attention of nearby neighbors. A small clutch of concerned folk rushed over, repeatedly asking me if I was okay. Within minutes the panel had decided that a call to 911 was warranted. It seemed to me that within seconds a fire truck appeared! I was able to explain to the paramedics that I was uninjured, but nevertheless I was assured that an ambulance was on its way. Again, I protested, saying that I was NOT in need of a hospital, so they reluctantly cancelled the ambulance. The paramedics handed me a disposable cold pack, in case my head hurt.
After all the assembled folks had wandered off to resume their afternoon duties, I became aware of a quickly increasing bump on the back of my head. My local friend Cathy immediately contacted her home care worker Albert, who is technically known as a Home Healthcare Aide. By this time I had made my way back into my house, and was slowly rocking, taking comfort from my legacy of the rocking motion bringing great comfort.
When Albert arrived, he was quite dismayed at the size of my significant bump. When he gently placed his had over the mass, he was unable to cover it entirely. He strongly urged me to go to the nearest emergency ward, and get it checked out. His pleas fell on stubbornly deaf ears. He departed momentarily in order to fetch a large cold pack from his car.
When exhaustion overcame me, I took on the task of ensuring that the welcome relief from the icy cold pack would not slip off my head as I nodded off. Truly a feat in pillow engineering, as the smooth plastic case naturally wanted nothing to so with my pointy head. Eventually I managed, with the help of four pillows to wedge support around this large rectangle of relief, and got some fitful sleep.
Lacey however decided that 530am was a fine time to start nudging me with her wet nose, while uttering her guttural canine complaints. I struggled into a sitting position, causing me to swoon and swerve. My body also realized that it was high time to deal with more pressing matters, so I stood and headed to the bathroom. THAT is when the entirety of my injuries became crystal. Two steps forward ended up throwing me headlong into some bags of donated clothing. At least it softened my landing, but the reality of it sent me into a panic. I really didn’t have any idea of which way was UP!
My sensible friend Karen called our shared neurologist, Dr Dunn, to bring him up to date on my status. He immediately insisted that I go straight to the nearest emergency department. Get in line, I already have several well meaning folks telling me what to do. Through determined negotiation, Karen managed to cross out ’emergency department’ and insert ‘urgent care’. The reason for this was purely a matter of the wait times for these facilities: the first will take all comers and usually means wait times of many hours, but the latter is for less dramatic (and time consuming) injuries, with much lower wait times.
A born organizer, Karen told me the time at which she would pick me up for this appointment. As luck would have it, I was able to get right in to see one of the doctors. After a quick but thorough exam, she determined that I did not need any of the available scans. My bump, although much decreased in size, did manage to impress her, as well as the numerous abrasions on my scalp. She pronounced mine to be a “severe concussion”, and told me what else not to do: NO extreme sports, like mountain biking, or downhill skiing, no trampolining or jump rope. In other words, give your poor old brain a chance to heal its bruises! No driving your car, at least for this week. Your judgement might be slightly off while your brain recuperates!
Well, at least I am blessed to have good friends and neighbors, especially since they all know that Glenn is in China. Both Albert and Karen have offered rides, and neighbor Craig has offered to take Lacey on her nighttime walks since she gets along beautifully with his dog. Directly across the street Chris has sternly told me that I am NOT to try taking groceries into my house on my own, that he would be honored to help me out!
WOW. I had no idea!