Sunday, December 30, 2012

this is not a bucket list item

It's about 4:40 pm, 12/24/12.

What should I do first? I'm scheduled to work from 11-7. As soon as I get home I can shower and get ready for work, then cook Christmas Eve dinner while spending time with the guys and then I can nap before my shift. Normally we let the boys open one present Christmas Eve and give them their pajamas to wear for Christmas morning. This works, because if we (I) take any pictures at least I'll be somewhat presentable in the photos.

I just need to get home and get everything done. The phone rings, I pick it up and answer it.

There's a patch of ice.

Oh shit! I swerve to correct my skid, then swerve again and that's it! The trees! I can see the trees and it's going to be right here that I die!

Suddenly everything is happening at once. It looks like my right arm has been severed at my elbow. Ouch, that hurt! Woosh! Bam! Beep.


"This is Onstar. Mrs. Scannon, are you in need of assistance?"

"I've been in a car accident. I've run offroad into some trees. I have injuries. My ankle hurts pretty bad."

"Mrs. Scannon, can you give me your location?"

I divulge my location and at this point I can hear someone running toward my car. "Are you ok?!?" "Yes, I feel like my level of conscious is slipping."

By this time someone else has arrived on scene. "Has 911 been called?" "Yes, she's on the line with Onstar right now."

The first responder has introduced himself to me. He lives on the property I've just arrived at, not so gracefully. His wife has come down the hill by now, covered me with a blanket, taken Big B's number down and is going back up to their house to make the call.

I've assessed myself as best I can while trying to remain conscious and it seems my right arm is intact with no bleeding, but my right ankle seems to be pinned at the gas pedal and the console wall. The gentlemen have sprayed the engine of my car with a fire extinguisher and I have to fight a coughing fit since the smoke from the extinguisher was so brutal. I no longer see the black swirls in front of me, but I'm still scared. My abdomen is burning so I remove my seatbelt.

"Alive?" "Yes, she's alive. We're waiting on the ambulance Onstar has called for." "Should we call 911 again?" "I did and they said and ambulance is on its way." "What is taking so long?!" "The roads are bad right now."

Big B and LB have arrived. AW is home with the animals. Once they discover I'm okay they start trying to find my essentials. My purse had somehow wedged itself into the glove compartment. My wallet isn't in it. They collect my phone, while making sure I remain okay.

Finally EMS arrives. We saw the blue lights of the deputy's cruiser first, then the ambulance and fire truck. The EMTs assess me and make an extrication plan. Nothing is ever easy with me. Being conscious they couldn't just slap the c-collar on, pivot me and slap me on the backboard. I ended up having to pivot myself out head first, onto my left leg, then onto the backboard and stretcher.

The ride to the hospital was brutal. It seemed to take forever and we must have hit every pothole in the city.

After x-rays and CT scans were done it was discovered my ankle was broken at the Talus bone and the ortho group associated with this hospital doesn't repair that fracture. They had to transfer me up to Northern VA where they do fix that bone.

Meanwhile, I had to become "bitchy patient" for a bit since the c-collar was biting into my scalp as if it had tiny little teeth. I kept having to ring the call bell. "Can I please get some pain medicine!?" At this point I hadn't even received anything for my actual injuries. Once I was cleared for c-spine, they removed the collar and I was almost pain free. Ha.

Come to find out I also have two rib fractures on my right side, the back of my left hand has a large, deep abrasion and is severely bruised, my left knee is also severely bruised, there's an abrasion on my left shin, and of course I have the obligatory seatbelt injuries by way of bruising across my right breast, upper mid-chest and across my entire abdomen.

Fast forward to Christmas Day. The guys opened presents at home and brought mine in for me to open while I was still in the ED at the 2nd hospital. It was great to see their faces and be hugged by them.

The waiting game was on again, but it wasn't too terribly long before admission and surgery orders were written. I was wheeled up to the Ortho Unit and the guys made their way back home.

I'm now in a short leg cast from my right toes up to my right knee. The Talus bone could have ended up being fixed in two surgeries, depending on my tissue status, but luckily they were able to do it in one fell swoop. I was also consulted on by the trauma surgery department for my broken ribs.

The worst part of this is LB was home on leave after his intial training in the Air Force and left Friday morning, so I wasn't able to spend too much time with him.

He left and is safely tucked away at his first base in Montana.

I'm living downstairs in AW's room since it has outside access as well as a bathroom, therefore making me not have to go upstairs until my ribs are healed.

We moved this past summer. We went from 2100 sq. ft. colonial in a suburban development to a 3000 sq. ft. log cabin tucked away in the woods not too terribly far from where we lived before. My bedroom is on the top floor. Someday I'll master the stairs and return to my little master suite. As for now, I'm surrounded by Steelers paraphernalia, a bedside commode, a walker and various essentials that help me remain as comfortable as possible.

Currently, I'm under doctors orders for non-weight bearing status on my right foot. That's why I'm using a walker. My ribs will hopefully heal well, sooner than later. My left hand is tender and gripping a walker isn't easy, but it's what I have to do right now. The other bruises are healing. I have some sort of sciatic nerve problem that was aggravated by sitting all those hours in nursing school studying, so it makes positioning a little problematic. I have about six pillows, in various different sizes and puffiness, I may be using at any one time.

I"m thankful my family and I are surrounded by the caring, generous helpful people we have in our lives. Meals are being provided. A friend is staying with us to help out. We've hired a housekeeper to come in periodically to help maintain the cleanliness of the house. Many people will be helping with the animals when Big B is working and AW is at school.

Making order out of chaos is my speciality.

I'm lucky to be alive and thankful for it!


Anonymous said...

Oh Kirsten! I have no words!!! You are so very lucky to be alive and thank God for the homeowners whose quick thinking, one could say, saved your life by putting out the fire in the engine and by wrapping you in a blanket to keep you warm. Knowing someone was there to keep you calm and offer kind words of support had to be comforting. I am just so very thankful that you are going to be ok. I have been thinking about you and saying little prayers for you to heal quickly. I just wish that I lived closer so I could lend a helping hand. Heal swiftly my friend....and remember..FB has a lot of games that can keep you occupied ;)

Love you!!
Kim B.

Robyn said...

OHMYGOODNESS!!!! I didn't know this. I broke my ankle last summer and let me tell you...IT SUCKS! Anyway, glad you can still play scrabble.

I'm so sorry you got hurt. That must have been the scariest thing ever!!!!!

Robyn said...

OHMYGOODNESS!!!! I didn't know this happened. Must have been the scariest thing ever. I broke my ankle last summer and let me tell sucks! I'm so glad you are OK. Man, glad you can still play WWF!

Robyn said...

OHMYGOODNESS!!!! I didn't know this happened. Must have been the scariest thing ever. I broke my ankle last summer and let me tell sucks! I'm so glad you are OK. Man, glad you can still play WWF!

Azmomo2andcounting said...

What a way to begin to blog again after nearly a year! I am so glad that you are OK and on the mend.

Order & Chaos said...

Thanks for the support and for reading my blog! Oh, and for traveling along with me as I recover!

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry that this happened to you. You are a very lucky lady that so many people care about and we all love you. I'm glad as to the fast response of your care at the scene. Thank goodness for fire extinguishers and blankets. As all this took place on Christmas Eve, I would say that God was watching over you my friend. Although I have not been to your families new home after the move, I(we) always think of you all and well, you are missed by us .It warms my heart to see so many people helping out & providing meals and company. As I said before, I am only a phone call away if you ever need anything from me to help. Praying that you have a speedy recovery and that God continues to bless you and watch over you. You are loved by me & I really do miss you. Stay strong my friend :)

Lori Denise ♥