Three weeks ago today I incurred multiple, serious injuries from an accidental fall down the stairs.
“It was like putting potato chips back together.“
As Dr. Nathan Howlett put it regarding my surgery.
I’ve been blessed with the good fortune of natural athleticism and flexibility. For all of my sixty-something years I’ve worked diligently to maintain the gift of robust physical health.
These are the injuries with which I’m now in the process of recovering.
Shattered right elbow
Dislocated right elbow
Fractured right leg, (tibial plateau)
Contused right anterior ribs.
Lacerations requiring multiple sutures
Multiple muscle sprains and strains
Yet to be determined joint connective tissue damage
The following is the first written description of my accidental fall.
“What did she do anyway?”
I fell down the stairs. The very steep exterior stairs. At least half way down in the pitch dark. Seems I did an accidental full body sumersault type stunt over or along the right stair rail. Semi-concsious or unconscious all the way.
Upon landing, becoming momentarily, acutely aware that my right arm had become possessed by the devil. Mind splitting pain as it forcefully made contact with the rough, unforgiving concrete landing at the foot of the staircase.
I saw black. I passed out.
I came to with swirling, blurred vision, shadows of cognizance. Shocking awareness that my right elbow dangled loosely, precariously from it’s socket. Limp, juxtaposed to functional position. Suddenly, excruciatingly bleeding and deformed.
I saw black.
I passed out.
I came to.
The same chaotic, blurred scenario played out on the ground around and including me.
My right leg screeched through the eerie silence, “I’m broken! Broken! At the knee!, The knee! The knee!”
With my every breath, my ribs stabbed sharp, serated blade like pains into my chest. I could not breathe.
My right hip begged for mercy. Please, please, the torment!
My head, back, neck, hand, fingers, torso. All suddenly, overwhelmingly posessed of severe pain.
My brain, my mind heard so many pain signals, it lost it’s way. It didn’t know how to keep track. I couldn’t process.
In the dark, I passed out.
I came to.
Suffering the body of torture, I sensed two sets of eyes peering. From behind their respective apartment curtains only feet away, they watched silently and I knew. The only two neighboring tenants and landlord allies in the building witnessed. I struggled before them. They were not coming to save me.
Multitudes of friends and my beautiful, loving family have made it possible for me to survive the past few weeks.
You know who you are and I will never forget you.
And if there is a heavenly space beyond those pearly gates, I just know it’s being held for you.