Longtime Gates of Vienna readers will remember Dymphna’s unfortunate adventure a couple of years ago with a ladder and a fig tree. Today she decided that she missed the emergency room so much that she needed another little encounter with nature red in tooth and claw.
Or, in this particular case, nature green in garden clogs, because those were her undoing this morning. She wears ordinary plastic garden clogs when she waters the garden, to keep her canvas shoes from getting wet and muddy.
If you’ve ever worn garden clogs, you know that they don’t give you as good a sense of the terrain as regular shoes do. Dymphna was coming around the corner of the rosebush bed and inadvertently put her foot down on an ornamental rock, one that was wet and slick from the water. She hit the ground so fast that she didn’t really know what had happened, and landed hard on her right shoulder.
The sound of terrible screaming came through the closed window and brought me down the stairs and out the door as fast as I could go. She was trying to get up, and her right arm was hanging useless, with her shoulder canted at an unnatural angle.
I helped her up and she struggled to get into the car so we could drive to our family practice doctor. But as soon as the car started to move, the bumping caused such terrible pain that she was screaming again. She asked me to call 911 and get the rescue squad to come for her.
To make a long story short, it would have taken the squad more than an hour to get here, because our county has just four rescue squad ambulances, and the only one that could be contacted was on the way to a hospital in the next county.
So I drove to the clinic at 20mph with my poor wife suffering grievously all the way. The injury seemed likely to be a dislocated shoulder, and our family doctor doesn’t do dislocations. So she gave Dymphna a shot of morphine and we continued our painful crawl all the way to the emergency room in Charlottesville. That’s where we spent most of the day.
You know the drill — long waits in a little cubicle, X-rays, more dope, etc., etc.
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The shoulder was indeed dislocated, and relocating it took a burly male nurse pulling from behind with a loop around Dymphna’s arm while the doctor pulled as hard as he could in the opposite direction. Not a pleasant sight to watch, but she was under “conscious sedation” — i.e., on an IV dose of pain meds so intense that she was too groggy to know what was happening. Afterwards she had no memory of the process.
And now she’s “resting comfortably” here at home.
Prognosis: a full recovery, after two weeks with her arm in a sling while being waited on hand and foot by the future Baron and me. Then comes some rehab from an orthopedist.
Needless to say, blogging will be light for a while here at Schloss Bodissey. Dymphna may peck out a comment here and there occasionally with her left hand, and if she can persuade the fB to take dictation, she may even do a post. But mostly you’ll have to put up with just me.
While we were riding in the car right after the accident, in between screams Dymphna said she had sworn off gardening. But now she says she can’t follow through with her vow — she loves it to much to give it up.
So in a few weeks she’ll be back out there, searching for an uninjured part of her body and the place in the garden that will do it the most damage.