I have an intense fear of falling. This stems from a trauma in my teens where I had a nasty fall on ice while walking the family dog. I was trapped outside in the bitter cold for over an hour and no one came looking for me. I shouted as best I could, but I'd had all the wind knocked out of me and eventually I had to crawl back to my house.
Tyler's school was closed yesterday...we had a snow storm followed rapidly by a freezing rain storm. The end result was ice, and lots of it. The driveway was like glass. I carefully maneuvered the boys to the van, got Tyler in and then picked my way around to Max's side to strap him into his car seat. I'm not sure how, but suddenly my feet just went out from under me. My chest slammed into the ledge/step of the minivan and my knees took the rest of the impact on the ice. I continued to slide away from the van while desperately trying to hold on, wrenching my upper back and neck with the effort.
I had the wind knocked out of me but good and I was in agony from the pain in my chest and knees. I was yelling with the pain and gasping for air, all the while thinking karma is a bitch. You see, just last night I watched a YouTube video that another blogger had posted. It was called "the grape lady" or something to that effect...a news clip from some morning show where the reporter takes a NASTY fall when she tries to climb out of a vat of grapes she was stomping.
Many people find the video funny (it's a phenom on YouTube with many edited versions and music videos). I didn't laugh. I watched it and felt really badly for the poor woman. I probably shouldn't have watched it at all.
So there I was, writhing in pain on the ice, both boys still in the van in the frigid cold. I couldn't stand up. No matter how I tried, the pain in my knees was agony and the driveway so slick, I couldn't get any leverage. It took 20 minutes before I was able to pull an old fleece shirt of John's from the floor of the van out onto the ice and used it to stand up, all the while crying "God help me!" It took a while to struggle back into the van, watch Tyler move some items out of the way in the garage and then move the van inside. Since the basement remodel there is very little room to get in and out of the van with all the crap being stored. It was a major struggle to get back out of the van and get Max out of his car seat and into the house. In the end, we were all outside for over an hour.
Our road is very busy with people driving their kids to school, this route being a sort of scenic shortcut. Honestly, I'm surprised that none of the cars driving by saw me struggling in my driveway (if they did, they didn't bother to stop to help.)
John is in Dallas and was, naturally, completely freaked out when I called him from my cell phone, once I managed to get into the van. He called Tyler's school to let them know what happened and then he called his mother. She lives about 40 minutes away from us. Once we finally got back into the house, I called John again to tell him not to send his mother over. Even in my extreme pain, I couldn't take the thought of having company over. The house is a wreck! I'm insane, I know.
Meanwhile, the school nurse called to check on us. I could hear Tyler talking to her first and recounting the events in his typical dramatic fashion..."Mom fell in the driveway and almost DIED! She's hurt really really bad!" That poor woman. Ty finally brought me the phone and I could hear the concern in her voice. Yes, I was struggling a bit to breath. No, I didn't think I broke any ribs...just badly bruised. Hospital? No no...I'll be ok, I think. My breathing? Oh. Well yes, it hurts to breath...but I am also getting over an upper respiratory infection and I've been coughing for days. Sitting out in the cold all that time panting for air probably didn't do my lungs much good. I finally convinced her that I would be ok. I think she said she would call again later. She wants to bring over some salt for our driveway. What a nice woman, honestly.
Also meanwhile, John is trying to get an earlier flight home. Poor guy. He's never gonna want to take another business trip. Disaster always seems to strike when he is away.
Thank God for Aleve. Once that kicked in, I was able to breath a little easier. Tyler is being a huge help today too. I'm glad I reigned in some of my insanity and didn't try to bring him to school anyway. I just wish I could lie down...it hurts less when I'm sitting up. I envy Max right now, napping peacefully.
Ow ow owie!