Just the other day, Darien was helping me look for something that I lost and while climbing over the back of a chair, she toppled backward, hitting the back of her head, smack on the front shelf edge of one of our hutches. In one instant, I knew it was going to be pretty bad by the sound of the crack on the wood. I jumped up and asked if she was ok and she took one hard look at me and began screaming.
One large goose egg later and two packs of ice, three times waking her up that night to recite her ABC’s and the event was over. She was lucky and I felt just like my dad must have felt on at least four separate occasions when I was growing up.
The first clear memory was when I was six. I hated my hair and had it in a pony tail, using those pony’s that have the hard balls on the ends that you wrap over one another. I see you thinking ahead here. Picture this. A wagon. A styrofoam cooler placed carefully on top. My brother at the helm of the handle to the wagon. Me sitting on top of the cooler. The wagon was on the sidewalk and we were playing cowboys and indians and that was our carriage. I thought it would be cool to yell, “Giddy Yup!” Big, big mistake. My brother jerked the wagon. I fell backward and hit my head on the pavement. Those lovely balls that held my hair in a pony tail went into my head.
Head cuts and injuries bleed a LOT and my brother went screaming to my mother. A short time later I remember the head shave, the needle into my scalp and then my father. He came from work in his Naval uniform and upon seeing him, I lost it and cried hysterically. He comforted me until I stopped crying and I can’t remember when he let me go. I don’t remember getting the real stitches and I don’t remember getting them out. I remember crying for a long time.
About 5 years later, I was at school playing a great game called “Red Rover, Red Rover”. This was a power game and if you didn’t break through the other side’s arms when they called your name, you were just lame. So when my name was called, I backed up and ran with all my might to the weakest point in their chain of arms. What I didn’t know was that they were going to LET me on their side and just let their arms go.
Well, I fell full force through their arms and hit the ground right shoulder first. I felt it happen. My collar-bone split in two. A solid break. I couldn’t move. The pain was immense and the school called an ambulance immediately. The hospital crew had me on the x-ray table pressing my shoulder back (that was fun) to take the picture when my father ran inside. I hadn’t cried until that very moment and it happened again. I screamed through my tears and my dad once again held me close and got me through the moment. Eight weeks later and a nice lump on my collar-bone to remind me of the day is all that is physically left, but I remember seeing my dad and knowing I could stop being brave.
The next and last time of tears was when I was 16. On my way from school driving into town to work, I had a terrible car accident. I was trying to avoid a stopped car in the middle of the road and drove under a semi tractor-trailer going about 45 mph. I ducked and luckily only totalled my car’s front end. I called my mother, who met me there and she called my father. I was fine and in fact after they banged out my right fenders enough to drive, my mother made me drive the beaten car to my father’s office.
This time was different. I pulled into the parking lot and saw my father waiting for me. When he saw the car and then me get out, he came running to me and held me close, crying through sobs of “Are you ok?” and “Are you ok?” and “Oh honey are you really ok?” I didn’t cry that day. My dad did. I would have one more accident only six weeks later as I was hit by a drunk driver and my father would meet me again at his store and take me to the police department and take care of everything. He cried again.
It’s funny to remember these things now as I grow older. I used to remember just the accidents and stitches, but now I can remember how I used to cry and then my father did. I think he passed that gene down to me, except I cry all the time. When there are boo boo’s, good news and invitations that didn’t come or someone being mean. My son, who is driving now is older than when I had my two terrible accidents and I hope I never get that call from him. I am an emoting fool most of the time and I am glad that the things I do remember, even though most of them are not the happiest things, have a glimmer of something special in some of them.
Authors Note: That car above has a twin as my parents bought two of them while I was a teen. The other was green complete with the Gremlin on the side panel. That very car was the car that I almost took my life in. I have attached that blog below.
- The Tethered Tires, Holding Me Together (wigsbabe.wordpress.com)