Day that changed my life continuation

I left you and me hanging at the end of the previous point.  It was not intentional, but I guess it was appropriate.

Hanging upside down by the seatbelt, with my head against the roof of the car, my first thought after the car stopped moving was “call mom.”  I reached over and grabbed my cell phone and had it dialing.  A male voice started talking to me through the driver window area, which had busted out, asking if I was okay and what he could do.  I handed him my phone and said “call my mom.”  “What is the number?”  “It is dialing,” was my response.  Now, who would think that being spun around and turned upside down, that I would find my cell phone without thinking about it or feeling all over within seconds of motion stopping?  I feel that the rational side of the brain takes over when fear is involved in that case.

So my phone goes out the driver window and another guy is crawling in from the passenger side door.  He told me to turn off the engine since that was still running.  The one in the car is asking my name, how I was, the date, if I could feel my legs, along with some other basic questions.  I know that he kept asking them because he wanted to make sure I stayed alert, but at the same time I just wanted to get out of that position.  Within a few minutes, the guy in the car got out and a paramedic came inside.  Then the same questions again.   I heard my mom’s voice outside, which helped me relax a little.

The fire department’s first concern was to stabilize the car since it was setting at the top of a hill, one side going to the highway, and the other going to a city street.   Once stabilized, it was then figuring out how to get me out.  The paramedic positioned himself under me because there was growing concern about the circulation to my legs getting cut off.  He lifted up my hips with his arms, and that is the position that the newspaper cameraman caught once the door was taken off with the jaws of life.  Once the door was off, then cut the seatbelt off.  The paramedic told me to not help roll myself out because they would position me as they needed to.  That was difficult because the brain wanted to help get myself back in the upright, or at least lying, position.

I closed my eyes once they got me on the gurney, not to sleep, but because the sunshine was bright.  My mom was by me, and asked if she could ride in the ambulance with me.  They did my blood pressure, and it was 120/80 steadily.  She commented that there must not be internal bleeding because that was high for me.  The paramedic was surprised that she said that, but it made sense.

Once at the hospital, they transferred me to a hard gurney.  The back of my head was hurting and I was getting tired of laying there.  After about 1 hour, they took me for neck x-rays.  Once that came back as no issues, they sent me home with pain medication and an anti-inflammatory.

So approximately 2 3/4 hours after the accident I was at home again.  That was just the start of my new life journey.

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Posted in April 2002

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