First off, thank you to all who sent birthday greetings. I’m slowly making my way through the replies. Slowly because I am typing one-handed. Friday my husband took me out to our new fav restaurant Bittersweet Bistro for my birthday dinner. We had a lovely meal and enjoyed being in the Aptos fog and away from the heat at home. After that we headed to Gayles in Capitola to stock up on food that didn’t have to be cooked for the weekend. The parking lot has staggered parking places with those cement blocks to keep the cars from rolling forward. When I opened my door to step out there was a cement block right where I needed to step. I noticed it too late and stumbled. All I could think about was folding up like a V and hitting my tailbone on the pavement. Considering how messed up my back is I knew that would be a really bad experience with pretty much no recovery. So I put my hands out to break the fall and my left hand went inside the open door of the four-runner (heavy doors) and then the door shut on the tip of the middle finger of my left hand. Oh there was much blood and the finger did not look normal. We wrapped it in towels and ice (thank you Gayle’s and the kind woman in the parking lot who heard me fall) and headed back over the hill to Good Samaritan hospital.

As emergency room waits go, I’m told it wasn’t bad. A half an hour for the triage nurse to look at it and confirm that we were right to come in. A half an hour to wait for a bed after that. The first doctor came in, took one look and ordered X-rays. He also said something about maybe having to cut my wedding room off which freaked me out but luckily didn’t happen. The nurse came in and said it might be hours before they had time for the X-rays but within minutes the X-ray tech came to get me. I was ever grateful. He took three pictures and as he wheeled me back to ER he said, “I’m not supposed to tell you this so you have to act surprised when the doctor tells you but it’s broken. A compound fracture.” Newsflash. I already figured that out. The finger looked too weird and the stuff that was coming out of the top wasn’t normal. Sigh. How many years of being thrown off the back of horses and I never broke a single bone? How many years of falling in competitive skating and I never broke a single bone? But the important thing here is that I saved my back and tailbone. The doctor took only minutes to agree with the tech that it was broken and called in the hand specialist/plastic surgeon. She was there in half an hour. Fabulous Dr. Melody Lynd whom I now adore. She was a former English major want-to-be-writer turned doctor and we spent the time talking about writing. It was about 5 and 1/2 hours all told in emergency but I understand some people wait for that long just to be seen. We left there and I was doing okay, all things considered. I had had two vicodin and some antibiotics in the ER. A few hours later I had a reaction to the antibiotics. (I’ve had vicodin a lot so I doubt it was it.) I spent the next 24 hours throwing up, even after I got the anti-nausea medicine. Not fun. Even less fun in the house that was baking us at 92 degrees inside. We would have gone somewhere with A/C but I was too sick.

Thus endeth my birthday adventure. I am at work, typing one-handed, so everything is slow. (You would not believe how long it took to wash and comb my hair in the shower today. I have a lot of hair.) I am grateful that it was not much worse than it is.