WOW. This is definitely NOT the post I thought I would be writing tonight. Crazy how much can change in an instant. Right now, I should be in Ohio celebrating our family wedding with all our loved ones, and instead I’m on my couch in Virginia with my feet propped up. But let me back up to the beginning…
We woke up early to get packed and ready for our big trip to Ohio. The plan was to work this morning, do our packing, get a quick haircut, and be on our way. I spent half of my morning snuggling Indy and preparing to leave him for four days. I HATE leaving the dogs.
This is a normal relationship, right?
We wanted to wear the dogs out a bit so that they wouldn’t be total maniacs for the dog-sitter, so even though it was drizzling outside we decided to take them for a run. Little did I know that the skies would open up and we’d be caught in a total downpour. Three soaking wet miles later, we returned home – totally drenched.
This is Casey saying are you seriously taking my picture while I’m standing in the pouring rain? We had two very wet dogs on our hands, so I brought them in an toweled them off one by one.
I jumped in the shower, changed into dry clothes and headed out the door to walk to my 12pm haircut appointment. It was still pouring rain, so I grabbed my big black umbrella and an apple to snack on while I walked. Just at the end of my block, literally 100 feet from my front door, I stepped out into the crosswalk (with the green light) to head across the street. From there everything sort of turned to slow motion…
The street I was crossing was one-way, and suddenly out of the corner of my eye I saw a giant tan vehicle barreling down on me. I had a split second to react and tried to jump out of the way, but before I even knew what was happening the SUV slammed me at full speed and sent me flying. From what I was told by the wonderful couple who helped me, I flew about ten feet across the middle of the street. Apparently the woman who hit me didn’t even see me or realize she had hit someone until she saw my umbrella go flying through the air. Gives me chills to think about.
I got slammed by the car (which turned out to be a gigantic Chevy Tahoe) taking all the impact in my top right thigh, and hit the ground on my left side. The minute I hit the pavement I went into shock. I started crawling to the side of the road screaming “oh my god” and trying to get out of the street so I didn’t get run over. A man stopped and helped me get to the sidewalk, where I laid down on his jacket. A few bystanders called 911, and others tried to hold up umbrellas and offer dry cover. As dramatic and insane as getting hit by the car was, the fact that it was POURING torrential rain just took things to a new level.
Within a minute of getting hit I was yelling “someone call my husband” and in a panic I actually grabbed my own phone and called him myself. I would estimate that Casey was by my side within 30 seconds, absolutely dead white in the face. Meanwhile, the woman who hit me was beyond hysterical, and I was actually trying to comfort her and tell her that I was not going to die. She was screaming at the top of her lungs, and it made me really nervous that perhaps I was worse than I realized.
I did a lot of groaning and moaning – I’ve honestly never felt pain like that in my life. My legs felt like they were going to explode. At the same time, I knew I could bend them and feel them (GOD could I feel them), so I kept trying to tell myself that ultimately I would be okay. At one point I glanced down and could tell that there was a lot of blood soaking through my jeans on the left leg, and it got me pretty worked up. The freezing rain made things so much worse, and I was violently shaking from the shock and the cold.
Finally, after almost 30 minutes of laying in the road with cold rain pounding down on me, the ambulance arrived and the crazy medical drama began. It was everything I’ve seen on TV, and I couldn’t really process that it was actually happening to me. Head secured in a neck brace, body strapped onto a backboard, wheeled across the road on a gurney, insanely long ambulance ride to a trauma unit, and eventually landed in an emergency trauma room with people zooming everywhere, machines strapped all over me, and a total out of body experience.
Can I just stop to tell you that first of all, I had to have my rain soaked tight jeans peeled off of me in the ambulance by two middle aged men. And then when I got the ER, there was a lot of totally exposed x-ray taking happening in a crowded room, and despite ALL the pain and panic I was having, the only thing I kept thinking was “of all the days, WHY did I wear lace underwear today?”
So after the underwear humiliation, they determined that my left leg was going to require a bit of repair. I got wheeled to another room for an excruciatingly painful wound cleaning and had my knee pieces back together 8 stitches. At this point I was also finally reunited with Casey, and seeing him made me smile for the first time through this whole ordeal.
Then came time for the stitches, and all smiles were gone. Pretty sure the people walking by my room thought I was giving birth. Worst pain EVER. Casey said they stuck a needle in my knee about 50 times to numb it with local anesthetic – so much that he had to leave the room because he was feeling so light headed.
I have a really disgusting photo of the knee wound pre-stitches, but I have been told that it is too gross to post on the blog. Instead, I will s
how you the after shot – nice and bandaged, and feeling ready to go home.
I have a shiny new pair of crutches that I’m hobbling around on, although to be honest, sparing one leg just makes the other one hurt more.
Casey said that when he went running out of the house after the accident, and then running back in to grab clothes and keys and things, the dogs were trembling. Isn’t it weird how they can tell when something is wrong? I think they are happy to have me back home.
Part of me is still in a bit of shock. I woke up this morning excited for a trip out of town and expected to be greeting family at dinner tonight. Instead, traces of the days events are still laying around as scary reminders of what can go wrong in a split second.
How ironic that we moved to the DC area because we were tired of feeling unsafe by having to drive so much in Charlotte. I never would have guessed that in my perfect walking paradise, I still need to be so cautious of distracted and dangerous drivers. It’s a lesson I hope we can all take away from my experience – no matter how late you are, or how rushed you feel, it is always worth it to slow down and pay attention.
I have no idea when I will be running again – at this point I’m working on walking. We got our flights re-booked after my mother in law spent 3 hours on the phone and a confirmation call to the hospital – insanity. We are now leaving for Ohio early tomorrow morning. I will never be so happy to land in the arms of our loving families.
Thank you all so much for your many well wishes, emails, and Tweets. I feel very loved and blessed.
Before I go…
Please, just for me, drive a little slower tomorrow…