‘Lotta Happenings — Accidental Happening

It seemed ions ago that I had my accident. I’ll never forget the day. It was hours from the Super Bowl of NASCAR and my driver had a chance to pull the upset for “The Chase”. Poor Rex, my youngest Boxer, got so much bad press as being the cause of the accident. Since moving to the house, Rex had been apprehensive even going off the back porch. What happened on this beautiful day was, Roxie was out back with Rick and I decided to take Rex for a walk. I saw Shelley who works at my doctor’s office unloading a moving truck with her husband. I decided to go over and welcome them to the neighborhood. While I talked to them, Rex appeared fidgety. As I left, Rex walked faster then broke into a run. I couldn’t keep up. I finally let go of the leash and fell over the curb and into the street. I saw the back of Rex’s legs running away as I screamed, “Rex! Come back! Wait!” After I hit the street, I felt intense pain in my left arm and saw bulges below my elbow. I also felt pain in right arm. I smelled blood and found out later I had busted my chin open. Images of people standing above me and homes were faint and the horizon turned white. Shelley and her husband were trying to secure my neck with a box and keep me conscious. I just wanted them to find Rex. Shelley ran to our backyard, introduced herself and quickly updated Rick. Rex was found on our porch shaking. It seemed like forever for EMS to find the new street and get me loaded. I understood the definition of excruciating pain. It was another forever for the painful ride across the back roads to the hospital as we hit every pothole enroute.
Once at ER, details were sketchy as I drifted in and out of consciousness. I asked Rick to find The Chase on the TV. I remember a voice saying, “I need to cut off your shirt” and heard the snips as the scissors destroying my lucky black ‘Lotta Sports T-Shirt. I was wearing it that day since Matt Kenseth, my driver of choice, had won several races when I wore it. At one point Rick said, “Matt’s in second” and the announcers were talking about Jimmie Johnson much further back. There was hope for an upset! I was whisked away to X-ray. I am screaming in pain as X-ray technician positioned both arms. What part of broken did the radiologist not understand? Following this fiasco it was back to ER. A voice said they were starting morphine. I begged them not to as my mom died at that same hospital after having morphine administered. I drifted off and on. “We need to move you to another hospital in Plano. “ “That’s so far for Rick! Can’t I go to Grapevine or Southlake?” “It’s a sister facility.” I looked up at the TV and Jimmie is celebrating a sixth Chase Championship. More sleep until I was awakened by people repositioning me to a board and gurney. It was dark as they loaded me in an ambulance. Another long ride but this time, it was all highway. I missed Sunday Night Football. I awoke the next morning. A doctor was standing at my bedside and said that they were waiting on parts for my elbow. The surgery wouldn’t be until the next day. More sleep. I woke up and Rick updated me. They had located the elbow parts. The left elbow was shattered, the right shoulder was broken, I had stitches in my chin and three fractures in my jaw. Surgery was scheduled for three that afternoon.
Prior to surgery I was wheeled to the holding area where I met my orthopedic surgeon. I immediately liked Dr. Jeffery Lue as we shared the same goal — having surgery done by the start of Monday Night Football with New England and Carolina. Although we were for different teams, I agreed to root for Carolina since I had two fantasy football players with the Panthers. I rationalized that it made more sense to stay in Dr. Lue’s good graces. It turned out neither of us saw the majority of game. The elbow had two fractures and the bone split, now making four pieces. The second bone in the elbow was shattered and that was where the replacement part went. I regained consciousness five hours later to see Panthers quarterback Cam Newton throwing a 25-yard touchdown pass to Ted Ginn Jr. with less than a minute left to take a 24-20 lead. My easy-on-the eyes Tom Brady charged down the field and the game ended with a controversial interference call in the end zone. Carolina held off New England. Dr. Lue was a happy man.
For me, a tough road to recovery and rehabilitation was about to begin. I had no use of the upper limbs and simple things like going to the restroom as well as getting dressed, brushing my hair and eating required assistance. It would prove to be a challenging time finding new ways to survive with my disabilities. It would have been an opportune time to give up and just accept the hand dealt. However, I didn’t… I refused to let this sideline me without a fight. (to be continued)

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  1. #1 by Molly B and Me on April 2, 2014 - 7:46 pm

    Wow. Just read this. So glad you’re healing and keeping a stiff (and stitched) upper lip.

    • #2 by 'lottasports on April 2, 2014 - 11:43 pm

      Thank you.. It’s been an interesting experience. I keep telling myself something good will come out of this… I’m still waiting… LOL

  2. #3 by Pam Fitzgibbon on November 17, 2016 - 6:50 pm

    You are so hilarious with your worrying about the NASCAR race and other teams!! You are a true sports fanatic!! I remember this day. And so glad that u fully recovered. And I do remember how poor Rex got a bad rap for the accident.
    You are a very brave person to go thru what u did! And little did u know that another crisis was right around the corner….Rick.
    But u both are survivors and I hope u have the best holiday this year, celebrating good health!!

    • #4 by 'lottasports on November 18, 2016 - 1:23 am

      I can say the same thing about you and Lucy. 😉

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