10:22 p.m. - 2005-11-28
(Before anybody starts leaving me notes- yes, I know that my images aren’t coming up. My supergold account expired and I can’t even a little bit afford to renew it. )
Scan of my arm 11 days later.
Almost a month and a half after the accident, only my ankle still hurts. I seem to have sprained it while trying to escape from the car. It’s my left ankle too, which means it’s on the same leg as my bad knee. (That knee being the most recent thing to land me up in an emergency room before this.) The two weaknesses exacerbate each other and now as I bus, bike, and walk my slightly gimpy way around town all the muscles and stretchy bits in that leg from about mid-thigh down wind and tense and tighten and stretch themselves painfully taut, and twang like piano wire.
Of course at the time I had no idea I’d injured my ankle at all. As I sat and waited for the police and the tow truck I was preoccupied mainly with the swelling in my left arm, the outer side of my forearm was inflating so big and so fast that I could almost see it growing. It looked like a whole football was coming to life underneath my tender flesh, already swirling in with black, blue, purple, and a deep violent looking red. A football with a couple of golf balls half embedded in its surface. I tested it experimentally. My hands and fingers seemed to be moving all right, if a rather stiff and numb, but that wasn’t a surprise. I rotated my hand at the wrist in either direction it brought a very sharp and specific pain right in the bone, right where the swelling was worst. This was slightly more alarming. Obviously it wasn’t a serious break at all but I worried there might be a hairline fracture. I was still too much in shock to be feeling much pain yet, but I knew it was coming, and it was going to be bad, and there was going to be a lot of it. I was truly, in the literal sense, horrified and sickened by the sight of the bruises that were coloring in all over my body. The sheer size and darkness of them frightened me, and they were swelling and becoming hard too. The arm and the Zorro-mark of the seat belt were the worst looking ones.I was bleeding from the wrist and the knee still when some park service workers arrived to put up cones and start soaking up the oil spilling all over the road. They convinced me to let them call an ambulance for me. Yes, I still needed convincing. I have no medical insurance and strange aversions to being fussed over and feeling weak and needy. My plan is always to just tough it out and see if I feel better or worse in the morning. Unsurprisingly, this plan often makes things worse and has almost gotten me killed on more than one occasion. I kept remembering a conversation I’d had with Arlette about all the minor catastrophes that had nearly claimed my life or limbs and how every time someone had arrived out of nowhere and saved my ass for me. How it seemed that, whether by intelligent cosmic design or not, the thing I should have learned from all of this is that I really need to learn when to ask for help. Its something I’m still working on and it was in my mind when I agreed to let them help me. That and there’s something about a big, burly, full grown man walking up to you and sort of recoiling in horror that makes you think “You know, maybe this is worse than I thought.”
The ambulance arrived and I tried to cooperate with the EMT but he kept asking me questions and then not letting me answer. This resulted in a lot of confusion, miscommunication, and ultimately your humble narrator being completely unnecessarily wrapped in a collar and strapped to a board for the ride to the hospital. As we were about to pull out the cops finally showed up and made us wait while they questioned The Lover and me. One cop climbed into the ambulance with me and though I could not see him I could tell he was a trainee as soon as he opened his mouth.
”Hello Ms. Pajamas how’re you doing tonight?”
We went through the rest of the questions with me repeating to myself in my head Don’t be sarcastic he’s a cop don’t be sarcastic he’s a cop don’t be sarcastic he’s a cop but when he asked me if I was wearing my seat belt I couldn’t resist and pulled up my shirt to show him the perfect and complete blue bruise imprint of the seat belt left in my flesh.
Blink blink ”Okay I’d say that’s a ‘yes’.”
The x-rays showed that my arm was mercifully not broken, and I was cleaned up, given vicodin and set free back into The Lover’s arms, and a fragile and unsuspecting populace.
The Lover, in my eyes at least, became some kind of angel through all this. He was there and helped me when it happened, he drove to the hospital and waited with me, handled the car and the cops for me, drove me back to his place and took complete care of me for the next three days. His help and presence made those blurry, pain and stress and vicodin soaked days actually kind of ...lovely.