Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Story of My Most Serious Injury

Given that this happened prior to the advent of this blog, I think it is only fitting that I dust this story off for NaBloPoMo. Most of you are a fresh audience, except for those of you who were there.

R and I were on an end-of-season trip to Mt. Rose, going snowboarding with my best friend and her sweetie (at the time). The first day was beautiful. As soon as we had crossed the pass the night before it began snowing, so we had several feet of fresh powder. R was in his element. Me? Not so much. Being at the end of only my first real season of snowboarding, all of which took place in Southern California, I had never boarded in powder before. I couldn't turn, couldn't get up after I fell. For being such soft snow, it was really hard boarding.

The second day, the conditions were much closer to what I was accustomed to. I was able to turn again, in the slush, and felt much more confidant going down the hills. I even, slowly, tried out the four slalom poles that were lined up on one of the runs. I would watch R zip through them, then after I would creep through them at a snail's pace.

Near the end of the day, when the conditions were at their slushiest, I had finally build up enough confidence to go through the poles at a decent pace. I started through, reveling in the speed of the curves. I lost my balance, recovered, then caught the edge of my snowboard.

I honestly don't remember the fall itself. I returned to awareness lying on the slope, my left arm above my head. I tried to get up, but my arm wasn't coming with me. R rode up to me, at which point in time I informed him that I'd dislocated my shoulder. My friend and her sweetie arrived. Given that my friend's boyfriend and I were both EMTs, we were quickly able to verify that, yes, I had indeed dislocated my shoulder.

Having worked at Mt. Rose in seasons past, my friend's boyfriend was easily able to get the ski patrol to bring a bucket over and take me down the hill. The ski patrol people were impressed by how calm I was, having recently transported a loud, whiney, not actually injured fat kid down the hill.

In the ambulance, the medic gave me nitrous, however I wound up not using the stuff because I was having problems answering the questions she then proceeded to ask me. In the hospital, I was able to convince the nurses not to cut my jacket off of me (it was R's ski team jacket), instead wiggling helpfully so that they could pull it off of me in one piece. R said afterwards that he really wouldn't have cared it the jacket was ruined, but I would have felt bad.

The hospital put me under while they put my arm in, so again I have no memories from that part of the experience. When I woke up, they dressed me and let me go home with my arm in a sling and a prescription for vicodin (which, as it turns out, makes me throw up). I promptly put my injured status to good use and demanded the Thai food that I had been craving all weekend.

My recovery was fairly easy. R was a good nurse, helping me in the shower and with my clothes. The only excitement was driving with one arm, which probably shouldn't be legal. Good thing I had an automatic.


Anonymous said...

OMG I totally remember you getting loopy on the nitrous in the ambulance... you were telling some funny stories. You also forgot the part where the nurse in the put the automatic blood pressure cuff RIGHT on your IV and proceeded to check your pressure every 5 minutes. That made my arm ache in sympathy.

Teacher Anonymous said...

I don't really remember the blood pressure cuff on the IV. Probably why they give patients so many drugs. :)

Unnaturally Blonde said...

Holy crap! That sounds terrifying! I get suckered into skiing with my husband because he loves to snowboard, but I'm petrified the entire time I'm out there. I think my only, and most serious injury was when I was in a car accident and broke my nose...it was a mess, pushed halfway up my face. And I had a cute little nose too! But I also had a great surgeon who put it back for me :-) At least we both had happy injury endings. I really like your blog, I came across it while reading the lovely Alyndabear's blog.

Teacher Anonymous said...