zeborah: Helen Clark telling an MP: Diddums. (diddums)
[personal profile] zeborah
I have mentioned before that Riccarton Road is my nemesis; this time for different reasons.

So there I was, crossing the road to transfer buses to go and try on some awesome shoes my sister had pointed me to. Half way across, and the traffic was moving slowly enough (though clearly about to speed up) that I thought I could dash in front of this red car to get the rest of the way.

In my defense, I was right. I got past the red car, and it was the black car coming up beyond it, moving somewhat faster, that hit me. I'd forgotten that (semi-official?) other lane there.

It seems likely that it was my elbow that hit the windshield (my elbow is barely hurt but the windshield got a great big spiderweb). I definitely remember tumbling through the air, and my head impacting something. My memory doesn't speak much to chronological order, but a witness says that was the road. I also remember the expectation that I was about to be hit by more cars, and the fleeting but profound sense, not easily put into words, that I had just made a very very poor life choice. I was I think about 80% expecting to be killed and was quite unwilling and chagrined at the idea.

Then there were people helping me up to support me getting off the road. My leg hurt a lot but I was most careful of my head because I have sufficient second-hand experience (naming no names) of concussion and post-concussion syndrome to be super paranoid of such. I didn't think I'd lost consciousness and more importantly witnesses didn't think so either, but I knew right away that it was a good bang. In retrospect I can understand why people say they 'saw stars' but it wasn't really like that. It was primarily like wearing a bicycle helmet made up of a buzzing which muffled everything, and secondarily the buzzing was kind of like the 'snow' static on an old tv screen except yellow.

So sitting on the footpath it became clear that I had a giant bruise on the left of my knee - this is what hurt the most, in that "How can I position this so that it will stop hurting?" agony that has no satisfactory answer. Also I spotted a bruise on my foot under my sandal and there was of course the huge bump on my head. The buzzing subsided but any movement of my head made me dizzy. I was shaking in shock and expected to get cold so put my coat on at one point, but wasn't actually cold. People were asking if I was normally this pale and you know I'm awfully pale but I bet I was even paler than normal.

Someone was calling for an ambulance and someone else got some ice from the nearby McDonalds. Due to instructions from the phone I wasn't allowed to eat any of the ice which disappointed me because my mouth was super dry. But mostly I was anxious to assure people that a) it wasn't the driver's fault and b) I wasn't going to up and walk away before the ambulance got there (I've seen someone do that though less injured after all).

The ambos (after their initial check) got me into the ambulance in this cool orange wheelchair. It folded out like a campstool, but then it had a belt and they could wheel me on it. Various questions - I told the story many times over the next hours - from the ambo and a cop though just identity stuff there, she met me at the hospital later to get the statement. (I spotted two police cars. Not sure what rated the second one; hopefully it was just a slow evening and not some pile-up I didn't notice, though that's possible since I wasn't noticing anything outside my immediate vicinity.)

Once the ambulance was off, I was allowed a bit of water from a pottle, which they then held for me because I was shaking amazingly and uncontrollably. My teeth were chattering so hard I was consciously keeping my tongue out of the way. They also gave me a bunch of ibuprofen and paracetamol nom nom.

Also they tried to take Blenheim Road in order to avoid traffic on Riccarton Road. Lol. As much as Riccarton Road traffic is my nemesis, even I'm forced to admit that Blenheim Road is never the solution. It took something like half an hour to get to the hospital. At least I was feeling much better by then.

ED was a bit more boring. Short version: I had an instinctive aversion to putting any weight at all on my left foot; dizziness all gone but some weird pressure in my ear, like after you've gone swimming. They couldn't see anything so probably just dislodged wax or something. I got x-rays on the foot - the bruise spread across the top of the foot just before all the toes start, that is all the toes except for the big toe. It turns out that the big toe, almost completely unbruised and sans pain, was the one that was broken.

Once they'd checked I wasn't showing signs of concussion or of internal injury I was left alone quite a bit so I thought I'd get out my e-reader. My e-reader was not in my bag no matter how hard I looked. I eventually resigned myself to the fact that it must have been in my hand, got thrown across Riccarton Road, and suffered some fate less fortunate than my own. (RIP, Pocketbook 360: you will be missed. Shall have to start investigating a replacement.)

When I finally got sent for a cast therefore I eagerly read the osteoporosis poster on the wall. A nurse noticed me doing this and pointed out I'm a bit young for that but it's not like they'd given me anything else to read.

Now, at some point while still on the footpath someone asked me how I'd get home from hospital and I somehow still figured it for 50/50 calling my family vs catching a bus home by myself. Haha. I lost this illusion fairly quickly (especially remembering I'd need to be observed for concussion), but it still took the nurses who put the cast on to convince me that I was not in fact going to go to work next day as usual. Seriously at that point I felt fine: I'd have been careful and kept taking the pills and allowed extra time to move places with crutches and kept my foot up on a chair all day but why not?

They explained it to me and today at my parents' house I felt it: that thing where I was in shock and shaking all over? that was adrenaline firing up All The Muscles. And today All The Muscles are aching. Especially the ones I never knew existed, like the muscles that chew and the muscles that move things around in your mouth so you can chew more effectively; as well as the muscles that hold your neck up and the muscles that help you sit up or even just shift to a more comfortable position.

I did today do some work from home because Bored, but not as much as I'd originally planned because sitting in one spot is distractingly annoying and also the few other things I had to do (eat; bathroom; get driven home for laptop and change of clothes and to feed the cat, and back to parents' via pharmacy for drugs) take extra long.

Anyway though I'm basically incredibly well off considering. Just on orders to be off work with my leg up for a week; then they switch this temporary cast (space left on the side to allow for swelling) for a more long-term fibreglass one, which I can apparently pick the colour for. I'm thinking purple.

Then I'm really hoping I will be able to go back to work, though there may be a lot of working from home in my near future: my work is very flexible about that sort of thing, but I hate it because my laptop is very awkward with the kinds of tasks I have, and yet putting my leg up on a 75-minute bus commute is even more awkward. So we'll see.

Oh also another cultural thing, which is they've given me ACC forms, which is public insurance for accidental injury, in a similar way to how we have EQC for earthquake property damage. I gather the idea was so that we wouldn't have to resort to suing people in order to be able to pay medical bills etc. You know, the usual commie death panel stuff. So I was reading these forms before being discharged, which is how when asked by a hospital aide for the umpteenth time what happened I could much more succinctly answer, "Ped vs car".

Date: 2015-03-13 11:09 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] ajk
Glad you are okay (considering the circumstances).

Date: 2015-03-13 11:24 am (UTC)
choirwoman: (Default)
From: [personal profile] choirwoman
Only a broken toe and a broken ereader! There must have been a whole batallion of angels watching over you.

(And I do love dreamwidth's captchas!)

Date: 2015-03-13 12:37 pm (UTC)
graydon: (Default)
From: [personal profile] graydon
Seven names of yikes. I'm so glad it wasn't worse!

I have found that during the recovery phase from this sort of thing, often pain causes tension which causes more pain (though that was sprained ribs, not a sad foot), and that methocarbamol, which in Canada is an over-the-counter muscle relaxant, helps keep that cycle from getting too far advanced.

Date: 2015-03-13 01:34 pm (UTC)
starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)
From: [personal profile] starlady
You know, I got hit by a car door and was knocked unconscious off my bike and had to get stitches a few years ago, but this sounds way, way worse. I'm glad you're okay, all things considered. Take it easy.

Date: 2015-03-14 09:41 am (UTC)
starlady: ((say it isn't so))
From: [personal profile] starlady
Well, when I got to the ER and they eventually saw me (the real nurses were on strike; the scabs didn't have key cards; the doctor stitching me up spent the whole time ranting about their labor conditions but I fell asleep halfway through so I missed most of it) they told me I almost certainly didn't have a concussion, and I believed them.

Toes are weird. I think having a break without pain is actually fairly common, but it's good that they put a cast on it so it doesn't set wrong. Though I imagine it must be a huge nuisance!

Date: 2015-03-13 01:57 pm (UTC)
heliopausa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heliopausa
Wow! That's startling and a rotten thing to have happened to you - I'm sorry to hear that it happened! Very, very good that you had such good witnesses and helpers and medical care, of course, and I hope that it's all steady recovery from here. (Oh wonderful, to have somewhere else to go, where people can pamper you and run errands. )

And there won't be a single murmur from me against the great-heritage-from-those-who-made-it-reality commie death panel. Long may such sanity prevail! also, blessings on your work for being decent.


Date: 2015-03-13 03:43 pm (UTC)
cereta: Barbara Gordon, facepalming (babsoy)
From: [personal profile] cereta
I'm glad you're relatively okay! Even if you haven't shown signs of concussion, you might want to take it easy mentally for a day or two. Even subconcussive events can cause some minor damage, and cognitive load often makes that worse.

Ahem. I get these weird research interests, and head injuries in sports was a recent one. Possibly I am now paranoid about it.

Date: 2015-03-13 08:00 pm (UTC)
cyphomandra: fractured brooding landscape (Default)
From: [personal profile] cyphomandra
I'm glad to hear you aren't more damaged! Riccarton Road is diabolical (also, what other lane? I thought it was still single lane but haven't been there for a while) Do take it easy and all the best

Date: 2015-03-13 08:21 pm (UTC)
green_knight: (Hug)
From: [personal profile] green_knight
I am extremely glad that you seem to have suffered only (comparatively) minor injuries; I hope you feel better soon.

<sends virtual arnica>

Date: 2015-03-14 06:29 am (UTC)
soon_lee: Image of yeast (Saccharomyces) cells (Default)
From: [personal profile] soon_lee
I'm very glad it wasn't any worse and that you are able to tell the tale.

The whole not allowed to have any ice thing is so that there is no (less) delay if you ended up needing surgery; nil-by-mouth and all that. I know this because it was mentioned when I did my First Aid** Refresher course last week.

Reads like you did the right things & it's great that passers-by stepped in to assist, and awareness of the symptoms of concussion is a *good thing*.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

**Skills that I have never been called on to use, and I hope are never required, but you never know.

Date: 2015-03-14 09:53 pm (UTC)
annathepiper: (Default)
From: [personal profile] annathepiper
YIKES. Very glad this turned out more or less okay and I hope your healing proceeds smoothly!

Date: 2015-03-14 09:53 pm (UTC)
julesjones: (Default)
From: [personal profile] julesjones
Eek! Glad to hear that you are okay, for certain values of okay.

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