Hello Again

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(disclaimer:  It’s hard for me to write at this time.  I would ask that all of  you grammar snobs (I mean that lovingly) forgive my jumps from past to present, 1st person to 3rd…whatever.  You know who you are.  😉

It’s been a while.  Sorry about that.  When the Minnesota weather warms up, I get a little outdoors nutty.  You know, cleaning and mulching and trimming and planting and perking and tilling.  I’m very proud of my thriftiness in planting this year.  I’m rewarded with perennials galore, so I don’t have to add in too many annuals.  Well, rewarded can be stretched into “burdened” because my largest perennial garden has turned into a monster.  One that I have had under control until this the last few weeks.  Explanation to follow:

Representation.  Not actual stupid ladder.

Representation. Not actual stupid ladder.

I have some stubborn blood running through these veins.  Instead of paying someone to trim some my lovely maple and who-knows-what-that-other-tree-is in my front yard…..I did it myself.  Quite well, I must add.  (side note:  I love trimming trees.  I actually imagine trees trimmed and clean when I drive around town.  You know, like pines that brush the ground and need some TLC.  Stuff like that).  Okay, back to my story.  So I’m trimming my tree.  I strategically place my ladder, leverage my tools and cheer when a targeted branch falls to the ground.  Yeah, I suppose I’m a little over the top, but I actually think, “Yah!  Take that you overgrown….branch!”   Don’t deny it people.  It can sound fun.

Representation.  Not actual tree.

Representation. Not actual tree.

Right.  So I’m trimming the tree and I just need to get a little higher.  I didn’t want to adjust the ladder further, so I step into the tree and reeeaaaccchhhhhhh for one poor little branch (okay, I have feelings for the smaller branches).  The ladder slips.  I think it slipped just 6 inches, but that was all it took.  I reached for air, clutched a limb from an unnatural position…and fell somewhere around 12 feet.  Part way down, my shoe caught in the ladder/tree, flipped me head-down and that is what hit 1st.  Head.  Left lower back.  The rest didn’t matter.

Fortunately, I landed on grass just inches away from my driveway on the left.  Inches away from my rock boarder by my head.  With the wind knocked out of me and stars rolling around in my head, I did manage to squeak “help.”  I heard a door slam, but no one came.  Great.  NO ONE came.  I’m sure it was only a matter of seconds, but HOURS passed for me before my oldest son flew out the front door and into action.  As it turns out, Zoey heard my squeak and ran for her big brothers.  Thanks goodness.

Beyond there, the boys rounded up frantic neighbors (one of whom was an airline attendant trained in more first aid than anyone else).  Ambulance, police….everything to frighten the poop out of my children swirled the yard within minutes.  Someone found Zoey – crying – and hiding in a corner of her room.  My heart still chokes when I think of that.  As poorly as I felt, I was only concerned about my children.  Where were my kids?  What where they doing?  Are they all right?  Will my neighbor PLEASE stop freaking or she’d scare my kid?  Etc…. I HATED feeling so helpless.  I wanted a cell phone in my hand so that I could just have someone call the few moms I knew I could trust to help my babies.  No such luck.  I had neighbors.  Great neighbors…people I would have to trust with my most precious kids.  I had to have faith and that’s all I had at that moment.

Back to the action.  Being on a backboard in an ambulance….on highway 100….in rush hour… bites.  At least I had enough morphine coursing through my veins to razz the driver through his little window.  I’m sure he loved me.  I kept questioning his choice of route to the hospital.  What?  Did he take me down France?  Good grief, get some shocks on this thing!  Pretty soon, I reallyyyyyyyyy calmed down because the medicine was working and the shock was really setting in.  I shook uncontrollably and I felt really claustrophobic in my head brace.  They rolled me into a room and then began apologizing.  Huh?  I didn’t get it.  Everyone kept apologizing about the room, the location, etc.  Suddenly, a face appeared over mine and it was my wonderful husband.  His first words:  What’s up with this room? 

I finally found out that they had taken me to some back/wing/tower place where CRIMINALS are often taken.  Thus, no windows, nurses hiding behind a glass wall, police guards and …uh…. a special bed that holds up to handcuffs.  Can you believe it?  I guess they were busy and it didn’t really bother me.  More or less, I had to have a sense of humor about something.

Trajectory (pic from autumn 2008)

All in all – the rest is really a blur.  I ended up with scrapes, bruises and a concussion.  And a handful of medications.  My GOSH, those things made me lose track of the entire week.  My wonderful neighbors cleaned up my entire yard of clipped branches.  They stuffed my children with pizza AND McDonald’s.  My parents decided to come when I exhibited some “over the phone” behavior that was alarming.  I don’t need to go into it, but the pain and concussion didn’t leave me right.  Flowers arrived, candy and awesome paparazzi magazines arrived.  Moms – wonderful, glorious moms – came and went with Zoey, so that she could see friends, play t-ball and just get out of the house.  My dad and husband flew into a “fix it” flurry.  All of those little broken things around your house that you stare at – for years – were magically fixed.  My mom’s method of love is bringing on the food.  She likes to run to the grocery store and bestow food upon you.  I’m sure I wasn’t the most polite patient, because I kept questioning why she needed to go to the grocery store AGAIN?!?  Every day.  But I love her and I appreciate all of the little food items I keep finding in my fridge and cabinets.  It did, indeed, come in handy for a mom that didn’t feel like standing and kids who were hungry.

Concussions are interesting.  I know many of you have experienced them.  This was my first time.  I thought they went away in a few days.  Guess it’s different for everyone, but I was told that my symptoms (hit the cerebellum) could last for 6 mths to a year.  UH.  Inconvenient.  Anyhow, my words and thoughts jumble…my balance was an issue (but better)….and the headaches cause exhaustion and nausea.  I hate the fact that I couldn’t read.  That was very weird and it impacts EVERYTHING.  Recipes.  Books.  Night time stories to my kids.  Looking at the TV remote control.  Visiting the bank and trying to watch them count out my money.  Checking the weather online.

The other interesting thing (and most interesting to me) is that I have a craving for peanut M&Ms.  Many of you know that I haven’t eaten peanuts or peanut butter for over 30 years.  Just don’t care for it.  Don’t care for the smell, the taste, the ANYTHING about it.  However, my friend brought over a bag loaded with candy and I ripped open the M&M’s.  I couldn’t get enough.  I’m amazed.  Who knows whether it was the concussion or the drugs…but I overcame my age-old peanut issue.   Huh.

Well, I’ve kept you long enough today.  I have more to share in another post….summer sports, garden bounty, my quest for healthier school lunch meals, knitting and sewing that I’ve completed.  I’m eager to get back to normal.  I’ll be posting more often.  Until next time, stay out of trees.

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