2007-07-20


7-20-07

So I go to see Harry Potter with my youngest daughter and the three grandkids. We have a blast. I bring them all home and as I pack my stuff that I left at my oldest daughterís house from babysitting that day so I can leave I hear my son-in-law running up the basement stairs. ďOh No!.Ē I think. ďThe dog will follow him up and into the house and I left the front door open to make it easier to transport my stuff to my car.Ē

I panic and run with my arms full of laptop and clothes towards the front door desperately trying to out run the dog, that I am sure is right behind me, to the front door. My flip flops are wet from dew on the lawn. The house has nice smooth white tile. My wet flip flops have no tread and I find my self sliding uncontrollably along the tiles.

Too fast for thought I find myself in a crumpled heap on the floor blocking the front door from a dog that never followed its master upstairs anyways. I think my hand is hurt. People are asking if Iím ok. I should be but my baby finger on my left hand feels funny. It wonít open or close. Hey! Itís got some kind of dent in it exactly where my diamond ring sits on my third finger. Itís more than a dent. The pinky is slightly rotated and curled in on itself and is that BLOOD? Did the bone go through the flesh? OMG I think it did!

SHIT! I HATE EMERGENCY ROOMS AND THATíS THE ONLY CHOICE I HAVE BECAUSE ITS 8:00 AT NIGHT!

Iíll be lucky if Iím out by midnight. Crap!

I accept a ride from my youngest daughter to the hospital because I drive a stick shift and donít want to figure that out with an injured hand plus I know some drugs are coming with the setting of the bone. At Harry Potter they kept yelling, ďSTUPEFY!Ē to numb or shock another wizard. I kept yelling it at my finger. My youngest daughter joins in with DRUGIFY and I chime in with NUMBIFY. Luckily my Son in Law had handed me a baggy of ice so the swelling wasnít too bad and numbed the wound too.

I called my oldest, who had just left the same hospital after a 12 hour shift in ICU that day. (Thatís why I was babysitting) My thoughts were that she could grease the wheels a little as she works there and my youngest daughter could go home (She lives the farthest away) and my oldest could also go home and I could just call for a pick up later, because we live within a mile of each other and my car is parked at her house, but my oldest insisted on staying after my youngest left. Sheíd live to regret that decision.

An hour and a half later at 10:00 we finished triage. By 10:30 we finished xrays. My finger is shattered, most likely from the fall combined with falling on that humongous ring. We discover a chip missing out of the big diamond. I fell so hard that I took a chip out of my yellow diamond and shattered my baby finger into several pieces. The doctor that I finally saw at 11:00 cleans me out, gives me intravenous antibiotics so I donít get a bone infection from the open wound where the bone stuck out (it went back in on its own thank god) and calls a hand surgeon. The hand surgeon isnít on call but says I canít wait until tomorrow because of the open wound. I have to travel to a hospital in Boston, tonight.

Itís midnight and I canít drive because they are going to give me pain meds to set the bones and maybe operate. My daughter and I are unsure of the way there and they keep offering me morphine and I keep refusing it because Iím pretty sure I will be my daughterís co-pilot and we are both so tired and I donít want to sleep while she deals with everything. We are both sooo tired. She calls her husband to drive.

Now I can understand why she did this, BUT, I just refused pain killers to help her get there and neither one of us has work in the morning but he does. Itís just another favor Iíll owe and another time that I feel like a total dependent, clingy incompetent ass. Broken or not I donít like being beholding to my SIL. My only other choice is an ambulance there (paid for by insurance) but they donít bring you back once you are fixed so Iíd be calling for a ride home from Boston anyways, so we all go.

My SIL drives, literally, 90 mph there. We are both scared and Iím thinking weíre feeling his anger, either that or his desperation to get in there and shut his eyes. Itís obvious that heís tired. By 4:00 AM Iíve been triaged (again) paperworked (again) handed over my xrays, re-xrayed and basically seen everyone but the doctor that is supposed to fix me, that is supposedly waiting for me.

At 5:00AM he finally shows up and with the help of xrays he realigns my bones, twice, because he doesnít like the way itís splinted the first time he did it. By now Iíve taken the morphine and itís been so long ago that its wearing off so they novocained my finger. It was awful to hear my bones crunch as he realigned them but it was an instantaneous cure as far as motion was concerned. My bones are so shattered that he warns me not to move anymore lest they unset before he gets the second splint on.

We are on our way home by 5:30 and so tired weíre ready to fall over. Itís been 24 hours since any of us has slept. At the parking garage some guy that canít speak English keeps saying, ďTicket? Ticket?Ē an we try to pay but he wonít take the money. We think maybe we need to slide the ticket through the reader to get out. It doesnít work so we think itís broken. Weíre so tired that my SIL lifts the gate manually and drives to the place were you pay. The attendant comes out screaming, ďTICKET! TICKET!Ē as we hold out money that he wonít take because by now heís screaming that we broke the gate. I donít think so, it looks alright. Finally we leave the cash on the counter with the ticket and just leave. We think that itís all caught on camera and that theyíll see that we paid.

In retrospect what I think went on, besides us being country bumpkins and the ticket guy not speaking English, is that we were supposed to have our ticket on us, not in the car, and we hand the guy the ticket, he cashes us out and gives us an exit ticket. But we were too tired to deal with that or figure it out by then. Anyways, Iím sure they have his plate and no one came to arrest him yet.

But you know what pisses me off? They INSISTED I go to Boston because I needed a hand surgeon immediately and it couldnít wait the 6 hours until morning when we have a bone clinic at my local hospital. So I inconvenience my daughter and SIL and they take me in and there was no surgery, just the same bone setting I could have got locally just a half hour later than when I got it in Boston. It could have waited, we could have slept and I could have just got up early and it would have been done the same way they did it in Boston only a scant half an hour later.

You know what else pisses me off? Everyone screams that Boston is the best care available. I think the hospitals are dirty and old and I never get THE MAN, the BIG SHOT DOCTOR. I always get his underlings and I never see THE MAN. At my local hospital I get THE MAN himself because there are no underlings (not a teaching hospital) and half the time itís the big shot from Boston doing a rotation or a favor. Did you know that Cape Cod Hospital is rated best in Massachusetts for heart attacks and the best hospitals in Boston canít break the top ten?

Anyways, Iím looking after the kids until Monday afternoon and afterwards Iím going on vacation for a week and a half with a ding danged splint. At least itís my left hand. Iím a righty.


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Broken Finger