Telling Tales – Dark Days
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
As I sat in the Dekalb County Community Hospital Emergency Room last weekend, I knew one thing – I was in big trouble! Even the lady behind the admissions desk knew it. She avoided eye contact with me, so I just sat in my chair staring at the EXIT sign above the emergency room door. As I waited, I had this horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach.
One of the many things I love about being an adult – is that I can’t ever be “in trouble.” Remember when you were 16, you got home late from curfew, from a place you weren’t supposed to be and you drove up to the house that should have been dark. Instead all the lights were on, and you got that feeling in the pit of your stomach – trouble! You’d walk in to find both your middle aged, tired and angry parents in PJ’s and the trouble would start. Followed of a week of no phone, no friends and absolutely no fun.
So when I officially became an adult, one thing I absolutely relished was that no matter what I said or did, I could basically never be “in trouble” again. Sure, there were societal repercussions for crimes, but for basic wrongdoings – I was on easy street. I can do what I want, say what I want and go where ….
That feeling came to a screeching halt last weekend when my husband walked out of the emergency room with stitches on his forehead. He looked at me and said “this is a dark day for you.” (Not kidding – those were the words – out of his mouth – to me!)
Ok, so before you judge me, let me tell you my version of how it went down.
We had spent the day at the lake with friends. It was an unheard of 78 degrees in July and it could not have been a more beautiful day. We had spent the entire day on the lake and so when we finally returned to our friend’s lake house that evening, I was ready to find a good couch, watch a good movie and be lazy.
Right about that time, my husband came up the stairs with a one-inch cut on his forehead. Some there called it a gash, others called it a gaping wound, but to me it was a cut.
Everyone rushed to him and in a moment of panic it was suggested that I take him to the emergency room. Now, first, I didn’t even know where the emergency room was in Dekalb County, second, as we have private insurance any ER visit was likely to cost me $12,000 dollars and third, we were about to grill hamburgers.
I walked up to him, looked at the cut, and in my best Florence Nightingale voice said, “I’m not taking you to the ER – you’ll be fine – put some ice on it.”
One hour later when the ice didn’t help, the bleeding wouldn’t stop and it was apparent that his new nickname was going to be “Harry Potter”, I grudgingly took him to the hospital.
On the way there, I vaguely recall my saying “this is so silly, it’s like a paper cut and I can’t believe you are making me take you to the ER. I hope you are happy.”
Half hour later when the good Doctor commented “that’s a nasty wound, going to require stitches and a tetanus shot, glad you came in,” I took that as my invitation to go sit in the waiting room.
One thing that has come from my teenage infractions is that today, looking back, my parents and I can laugh about them. I’m hoping this too shall pass and very soon “Potter” and I will be able to laugh about what transpired.
See – I’m already laughing.
You can read all of Angel and Becky’s “Telling Tales” articles on-line at www.wilsonpost.com under the Style Section.