I remarked to my Emergency Room doctor last night that it had only taken me 49 years to successfully injure all my BIG digits. She laughed. She said “Well, at least you had a goal and saw it through”. This evolved into a conversation about Buffalo and Road Kill, but that’s another story.
My plan was simple. Get home early. Do 15 plus loads of laundry, clean the kitchen before things evolved in it and began to take over mankind, reorganize the Smurf’s bedroom so she could actually get around in it and write a wonderful paper for school on the differences between individual and cultural prejudice. All while wearing my “Howie” jammies and snacking on something completely unhealthy. One load of laundry made it to the washer, 3 plates, 2 bowls, and a broken glass latter, I was camped out in the local emergency room.
The Smurf offered to drive me (any excuse to get out of the cemetery (again another story) and onto a real road), but I opted for having her shift while I steered. I must admit I love our hospital. They valet park. That may be something done everywhere now, but I like to think it makes me special. We walked into the ER to find over thirty people swarming around in the waiting room. My first inclination was to go home and break out the dental floss and do it myself. Instead I took the opportunity to do a little people watching, mostly because I didn’t know where the needles where.
I walked away from my people watching experience with a few questions. First, why do Latino families bring Granma, Neighbor Jose and everyone they have ever been related to with them to the Dr? I’m not judging, but really people, there are only so many seats and the sick people need one too. While I pondered this I noticed the twenty-something year old guy across from me began cleaning his toes with his fingers and then yes, seriously, no kidding, licking them off. (We moved chairs at this point). He was of course seated next to his friend who apparently was the actual patient. I’m not sure if he was there for the excessive Hobbit hair on his toes or the sniffles. Not my business, but there were definitely some toe things that needed to be sorted out between those two. The only consolation was the toe licker was not licking the Hobbit toes.
At this point the blood has dried to my hand and arm and the towel wrapped around it. I was stiff from holding my hand up in the air and feeling a bit light-headed. The volunteer worker tried to keep me occupied by telling me stories about pansies and granola. She made me hungry; it was a perfect time for M&M’s. I mean really, usually when I’m in the ER I have to avoid eating anything because surgery is imminent, but I knew this time I could indulge on candy and soda with a clear conscience. Smurf and I shared, it was sugary bliss.
When I as finally called out of the waiting room to have my wound looked at we were greeted by a nurse topping in about 4’ nothing. I felt sorry for her, not because she was small, but because she had me to contend with. She seemed rather overwhelmed by my 6’ something size and felt the need to walk very far in front of me. I think the logic was, if I fell, there was no way she could catch me, and she didn’t want to be pinned and fighting for air underneath this massive woman covered in blood. She sat me down as quickly as possible, but even then I towered over her. She finally made me lie down. This woman gave me the best shot I have ever had. Tetanus in the arm, didn’t feel a thing. She deserves brownies or something.
While waiting for the doctor my lovely child took gory photos of my now uncovered wound. I really hope I don’t see them on Facebook today, but somehow I know they will make the middle school rounds, and pilfered (with permission) a few plastic gloves to use for dissecting eyeballs at school. At least I can be entertaining for her friends and our activities serve a purpose. I did think I would have to catch her though when the doctor shot my hand full of Lidocaine. I have never seen anyone turn so pale. I can’t imagine how she is going to deal with the eyeballs if this makes her weak in the knees. She personally has never injured herself to the extent of needed stiches and rightly so she was a bit “grossed out”. I told her to pay attention, it was cool and interesting. She stuck her tongue out at me, but did offer to drive us home again. What a sweet girl.
The evening ended with stitches across my hand, an ultimate bacon cheeseburger and an old episode of Bones. Still waiting for the laundry Gnomes to arrive and sort everything else out.