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Annie : Life's weird sense of humor - tri-mal fx
Diary entry posted Mon 2:48pm 21 March 2005

Jan 7, 2005 - I woke up this day knowing my husband, who works for the fire department and would be getting off duty at 8:oo am, was scheduled for arthroscopic surgery on his knee at 2:00 pm in the afternoon. So, being the good little worker that I am, at 6:30 in the morning I dressed and decided to head outside to see if I needed to get the snow blower out to clear the driveway for his arrival. I knew that school had already been cancelled for a snow day, and had heard my daughter get up briefly to use the restroom and go back to bed. So, out the front door I went, dressed for snow conditions in heavy boots, warm pants, sweater, jacket, wool hat, gloves, all of it. I made it about 20 feet when my feet went out from under me, and I think I landed on my right foot. I remember hearing this weird sound and instinctively knew I had broken my leg. I also immediately felt this odd sense of a disconnect from my right foot. Past training as an EMT kicked in and I immediately knew better than to try and stand up. I also knew lying in a heap in the middle of my driveway getting buried by the snowfall wasn't too good either, no one would ever see me, my husband would not be calling me until 8:00 when he started home, and my daughter sleeps like a log, so I'd better figure out how to get back to the house. Short of that, I would slowly be buried and freeze to death. So, I flipped over on my hands and knees and crawled back to the entry, got into the house, and screamed for my daughter to wake her up, and help me up the stairs (our house is split entry - no avoiding stairs). Once propped on the floor, I called my husband at the fire station and told him I had broken my leg. His station is almost the farthest from our house and he had no idea how he would get through the snow in a timely fashion to me. So, he called the firefighters at the station nearest our house, and they said they'd come right away to check me. Thank God for them. They were at the house in about 15 minutes, through the blizzard and all. In they came, (after almost slipping and falling in the same place I did - they could see my spot) they checked me out, cut off my boot, splinted my ankle, and offered me drugs for pain numerous times. Funny thing was, I felt no pain. (That still seems weird to me) And then they called for the ambulance to come get me. Being that they all knew my husband, there I sat feeling like I was entertaining a bunch of friends, all the while being in total disbelief of the circumstances. My husband called to tell me traffic was such a mess from the storm that there was no way he could get to me, so he went to the hospital to wait for my arrival. (When he got there, two other firefighters were being examined after falling on the ice and hitting their heads!) About a half hour of waiting, we all were wondering where the ambulance was. The Captain inquired, only to find out it was about 3 miles from my home. The medics had started up the mountain without chains (no 4-wheel drive on the rig), had made it that far and had been trying to get the chains on the rig. So, there we all sat in my living room, in the weirdest little get-together ever. Another half hour later, the medics were still trying to figure out the chains, all the while 3 miles from my home. Another half hour later, they were 1 mile from my home, only now one chain had broken, wrapped itself around an axle, and they were stuck trying to unwrap it. So, there I sat trying to maintain lively conversation while wondering just how bad my ankle was. Just short of two hours of waiting, and the ambulance finally showed up. They almost dropped the gurney with me on it in the same spot I had fallen while wheeling me out the snow-covered driveway, and as we began our slow trek to town in the worst of conditions, my only hope was that I would not become an unwilling participant in a multi-car pileup. When I finally got to the ER, the doc there knew my husband (well of course), took one look at my ankle and said if I didn't need surgery he'd be mighty surprised. It was at that point that the true irony/humor of the situation took hold. My husband picked up the phone to call his OS's office and cancel his surgery for that afternoon, mentioning to them my situation. Guess who was on call at the hospital that day. My husband's OS. We knew for a fact he had an opening that afternoon! And guess who would fill that opening. You got it - ME!!!!! One of life's sick little jokes. I found out I had a tri-malleolar break and would need surgery to fix it. But that's the rest of this story ...



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 Mon 2:48pm 21 March 2005
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