Thursday, September 12, 2013
Hit by a Truck (Literally!)
So...three weeks ago N was out jogging in the evening and as he was crossing the street at a crosswalk a teenager driving a pickup truck ran through a stop sign and hit him. The driver had slowed down so N thought it was okay to cross but at the last moment the kid saw a car approaching on the cross street and he wanted to cut out in front of the approaching car so he gunned it and hit N, tossing him out into the street.
Thankfully, he stopped and called 911. The police called me and I rushed over (it was just a few blocks from our house) and got there as they were loading N into an ambulance. N was conscious but as the police put it, "in an altered state" which meant that he kept repeating himself over and over. He kept reassuring me, "I'm okay, I'm okay!" but the blood on him and the way his foot was sticking out at an odd angle FREAKED ME OUT.
I drove home and arranged for a neighbor to stay with the kids and my in-laws came and drove me to the hospital. We sat with N in the emergency room as they stitched up his face and he kept repeating himself some more (due to a concussion) but this time he kept on making the same bad jokes over and over every two minutes or so.
N would dramatically stare off into the distance and exclaimed, "I don't think I can go on anymore...Grandpa? Is that you?...What? You want me to come into the light?...Grandpa?" It was both horribly both more and less funny because he was all bloody and in a neck brace and wired up to an IV and his parents and I had been so worried. The nurses were pretty amused.
The orthopedic surgeon on call came in and discussed the surgery N needed with us. His tibia and fibula had both been broken with the tibia sticking out of the skin (gah). N had surgery and they inserted a rod that basically runs the length of his shin and two screws to hold it all together.
We stayed in the hospital for two days while N recovered from surgery. The nurses were wonderful and I was impressed with the yummy cafeteria food (seriously!). After N showed them that he could get around safely on crutches he was discharged him.
Our family and friends were amazing during all of this. N's mom came and stayed with our kids and our neighbors also had them over to play. Another one of our neighbors anonymously mowed our lawn. While we were in the hospital N's boss and coworkers came to visit and sent a yummy fruit basket and a ginormous cookie basket. Out-of-state friends sent some delicious chocolate-covered strawberries. Local friends brought over dinner and came by to visit. And N's out-of-state siblings sent a fun book, pizza, and groceries.
We felt so loved!
It was wonderful that we had so much support because the first few weeks were pretty rough. N had to get twice-daily shots on his abdomen to ward off deep-vein thrombosis (and I had to give them to him) so it was unpleasant for both of us. N's non-broken leg had been scraped along the road and got infected and required two rounds of antibiotics to treat. At its worst it was pretty gross (here's a pic if you don't mind that sort of thing) and really worried us. I would freak out every time I changed his bandages and then I would go stress-eat and stuff my face with cookies and chocolate-covered strawberries.
But things are finally settling down. N went back to work full time last week and while he tires very quickly his body is healing nicely. The foot that was infected foot is doing much better and tomorrow we have a follow-up with his surgeon to see how his broken leg is doing and how long he's going to be on crutches.
Throughout this whole thing N and I have both been conscious of how blessed we were/are. It could have been much, much worse. N's hospital room overlooked the helipad and we could see the helicopters landing at all hours bringing in people who were in much worse shape. Compared to most of the other patients in the trauma ward N was in awesome condition.
I am so grateful that N wasn't hurt more seriously, that the driver of the car stopped and called 911 (and that he has insurance!), and that that we have so many people in our life who care for and support us. I can see the hand of the Lord in our lives and for that I am grateful.