Archive for August 29th, 2011

29 Aug 2011

All the Ways I’ve Hurt Myself

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Commenting on a post over at Suburban Scrawl, reminded me of one of the first lame ways I injured myself, which reminded me of the many others. So I thought I’d tell you about them.

The first happened when I was around 12.  My grandma was over and I was in the kitchen, probably looking for a snack. I opened one of the cabinets that held the pots and pans and saw a little, dead mouse. I didn’t want to scare my grandma, so I tried to stifle my screams and ran out the front door. I figured I’d get the mail and sit out there until I decided how to re-enter the house. On the way to running, barefooted toward the mailbox, I felt a sharp pain in my foot that instantly drove me to the ground. The gardeners were there and had apparently left a rake, tines up, on the driveway. You know how in cartoons, when a guy steps on a rake, the handle pops up and hits him in the face? That’s totally not what happened to me. What happened instead, was the tines went through my foot in two places and came through the top of my foot.

I don’t completely remember what happened next. I believe I pulled the rake out of my foot, but it might have been my grandma who did it. Within an hour, I was at the ER getting tetanus shots.  When I got home, I decided to tell my parents about the mouse so they could dispose of it. They did. It was easy because it was a leaf. I stepped on a rake because of a leaf.

A couple of years before this incident I was going to the mall with the same grandma and my mom, as any good Valley Girl would do on a weekend in the 80’s. I was wearing open-toed sandals and insisted on opening the door, which opened right over my foot and pulled the entire nail off of my big toe.  The bleeding was constant, as was the pain. My mom carried me to a bench and shoved my foot in a bucket of ice she got from the restaurant right inside the mall. Again, within moments, we were on the way to the ER. But, get this, on the way there… My mom stopped at 7-11 to get me a frigging ICEE. The extra moments of not getting medical attention were totally worth the extra Mom-Attention. I’ll never forget that. Or the screaming I did when I got shots in my foot. Or the screaming I did when the bandage was pulled off my toe a few days later. But mostly the ICEE.

Fast-forward a few years. I was 14 or 15, spending my summer at drama camp at Cal State Northridge. (Yes, I went to drama camp every summer for five awesome years. Shut up.) It was lunch time and all of my friends and I were deciding where to eat.  Half of us were on one side of Nordhoff, a busy street, and the others were on the other side. When we finally decided on Taco Bell, I yelled across the street, “Meet us at Taco Bell!” The word, “Bell” had hardly escaped from my lips when I walked, WALKED, into a telephone pole which was covered with nails and staples. It knocked me out for a second, and when I came-to, I put my hands to my face. I pulled them away to see them covered in blood. There was a dentist’s office right there, and my friends had the wherewithal to drag me in and get me some ice. About an hour later, my mom picked me up, shaking her head at my lame klutzery, (the ICEE days apparently long gone). I missed the next few days of camp and thought I looked like a monster with the dried staple-scabs all over my face. Years later, when I was getting rhinoplasty consultations, I was told over and over that I had broken my nose. I never knew.

And those are just three of the many lame ways I have hurt myself. I bet you have some stories you could share. Just be delicate. These kinds of stories always make me cringe.