Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Slice of Life Tuesday, December 15

           J. is back in the hospital again, this time edema in the legs of unknown origin. I’ve been there every day, even though he’s all the way across and downtown. Yesterday I was going to take some time off and go to a couple of parties. But halfway there – I was walking, of course, a mile and a half, Google Maps said – I tripped  over something and fell flat on my face. Totaled my glasses. Multiple cuts on my face, and I could tell that a front tooth was loose.
            A young couple walking behind stopped to help. They pointed out to me that I was bleeding, a lot, and I remembered that head wounds always bleed a lot, so I wasn’t too worried. They also called for an ambulance, which came in pretty quickly. “Please take me to NYU Medical Center,” I said to the EMT guys, Drew and Tyler. “My husband is a patient there.” I thought this was funny, even if no one else did.
           Once in the ER, I took out a pocket mirror and was horrified at my appearance. Nothing hurt, yet. I was left sitting in a wheelchair – I had felt shaky walking to the ambulance, so a wheelchair seemed a good plan – for quite a while until a doctor came around to triage me, asking me about pain, testing my hand strength, asking whether I’d lost consciousness (I hadn’t), whether I could turn my neck without pain.
            First I called my daughter, C., thinking someone should know where I am. She and her partner agreed they would trek over from Brooklyn as soon as they finished eating. There seemed no rush. No one had even cleaned me up, washed off the blood on my hands or on my face. Then I called my husband, who’d been asleep when I left and had forgotten where I was going. Soon after, his nurse and the clerk from his unit came to visit me in the ER – I think they didn’t tell him how badly I looked, though they were impressed.
            Eventually, a CT scan of my face revealed no broken bones. A doctor stitched up the cut in my eyebrow, and that nasty-looking gash under my eye has already closed up on its own. Today I went to my dentist, who literally pushed the loose tooth back into its slot, though I will have to  have a root canal in a few weeks to “clear out any dead root or debris,” my dentist said. Tomorrow I see my doctor, who will look at my face and tell me what aftercare I need: more ice? heat? how to keep it clean?
            As for the glasses, since I’m due for cataract surgery in a month or two, it’s pointless to get new glasses now, since they’ll just have to be replaced after the surgery. So I’m stuck with an old pair that just about works for distance, but for close work? I am typing with with my face about six inches from the screen.
            My daughter said I looked like I’d been in a bar fight, so I’ve been posting on FB that I got into a fight with a Trump supporter. The alternative story is the sidewalk is getting even with me for all the years I’ve walked all over it. What’s your favorite?