The Campaign For DA

2.12.2010

Random Friday Morning Thoughts: Injury Edition

  • You see that? That's me one second after catching air on a makeshift sled, hitting my right shoulder hard, and having it come out of its socket. So how did I get there? Let me wordily explain.
  • We shut the office down early, and I dutifully headed home.
  • I couldn't help it: I'm bundling up and take off walking my normal jogging course. No way I was going to miss that beauty.
  • I find a field I normally jog around and am darn near awestruck by the beauty. It's peaceful, it's snowing hard, I've got some great music on the iPhone, and I just stand there truly greatful to be alive.
  • But then I look about a half mile away and see a ton of folks in a big geographic "bowl" mostly sliding down a hill.
  • I called KD who was headed my way and tell her to stop at this park because this looks like fun. Big fun.
  • And it was. Watching people building giant snowmen, running with a Siberian husky mutt she had brought with her, and having a tremendous time.
  • Then a fateful event occurs: I stumble across a flat metal sign (I don't know how) which is different than the other contraptions that people were using as sleds (i.e. plastic signs, laundry baskets, trash can tops --- hey, it is Texas.)
  • We find a place perfect for sledding and slide down the hill a couple of times. Good times.
  • Then I noticed someone had created a ramp about a foot and half foot snow. I'm excited. It's a Sled Jump. Hey, the Olympics is coming up - I can do this.
  • KD goes first and it's hilarious. She ends up in a mass of tangled limbs on the ground as the dog jumps on her in excitement.
  • My turn. I line the jump up. Take a quick running start. Perfect take-off. Hit the ramp at a pretty good clip. Feel like I'm at least going to fly two or three feet before landing (probably overestimating). And then I land. And I feel pain. Big pain. It's on my right shoulder and, although I keep waiting for the shooting sensation to go away as I lay/lie on the ground, it ain't.
  • My ego and shoulder feel the pain of explaining, "This might not be good."
  • I make it to KD's car and stick my hand up under my shirt in order to feel my shoulder. Uh. Oh. It's not supposed to be like that at all. Definitely separated.
  • But I've got a great idea: This happens all the time in football games -- I've seen it! And the trainer always runs onto the field, sticks his hands under the shoulder pad, and pops it back it. And KD used to be an EMT! Problem solved.
  • So we go back to my house, I lay on the couch, and tell her to Google "separated shoulder popping back in." She is very uneasy. "Did you find anything?" I ask. "Yep, something about long term nerve damage. You're crazy. I'm not doing it."
  • From there, we go to a small "emergency clinic". I stay in the back of the car on my back and she runs in to make sure they can fix me up. She comes back and says, "Nope. They aren't going to touch you. Told us to go to the emergency room."
  • So now we're off on a 10 mile ride in slushy/icy conditions as I remember a kid at Bridgeport High School who was always having this shoulder separated. I make a joke about a guy I haven't seen in a krillion years, but it doesn't help the increasing pain.
  • We pull into the ER parking lot and see a sign ("Free Valet Parking"). Well, heck, that certainly seals the deal! What?
  • Fortunately, the ER had no one in it, and I stumble in holding my arm like it's been ripped off by a huge piece of machinery. I'm given immediate attention and within 10 minutes I'm in a hospital bed (Yep, I know the Obamacare comments will ruin this.)
  • Some guy comes in and puts an IV in me. IV? What the what?
  • A very funny nurse then comes in, rolls her eyes at me in mock disgust when I tell her what happened, and shoots me full of morphine. Did I mention I'm in excruciating pain at this point. It hurt, but not too bad, right after the accident but the pain is now ratcheting up.
  • They then tell me they'll have to x-ray me. Sheesh!!! Will somebody grab my arm and pop it into its socket so I can get the heck out of here?
  • The doctor comes in. Sees my pain. And decides it would be wise to pop it in. Now we're cooking.
  • Now comes the craziest part of the night. They have me sit up on the side of the bed and the doctor asks the nurse, "Have you ever seen this done before?" She hasn't. Uh. Oh. He has her take my arm and extend it straight out to the side. Ouch. Triple ouch! He then gets behind me and begins to push on my shoulder joint as the nurse pulls outwards. Can I make an admission: This lasted about 10 seconds and I'm groaning and moaning loudly. Very loudly. I can certainly be heard down the hallway and it was so bad I grabbed some piece of cloth (I hope it was sanitary), and shoved it into my mouth so I could clinch down it. It was just like a western movie when they pull the bullet out of some poor sap.
  • But it didn't work! I then hear the doctor say, "We'll have to do it the old fashioned way" which made me fear for my life because if that 10 second procedure of pain was "new school", I didn't want to see "old school."
  • I crumple back in the bed, and I hurt. I'm normally a wise guy and a jokester, but I'm nothing other than a heap of mush at this point.
  • Now the confusing part. The last thing I remember is them talking about more pain killers and then, as best I can recall, I "wake up" an hour later with my shoulder back in its socket with some contraption strapping it to my chest. I feel pretty good. And I'm getting out of there.
  • I asked KD something about "I thought they bring in an anesthesiologist if they are going to put you under?" and she explains I was never "under" -- that I was conscious the whole time. She said I was talking crazy, they had x-rayed me, and kicked her out. I have no memory of anything.
  • And that's how I spent my snow day.
Edit: We now have video of this blessed event: