Thursday, March 8, 2012
Freefall Part Two
Waking up sometime later, I was disoriented and for some reason I thought I had been sick. Slowly I crawled to the side door and pulled myself into the house. If only I can go to bed and sleep for a little while, I will feel better. As soon as I made it to my bedroom, I striped out of my bloody sweatshirt and sweat pants. I lost consciousness again. I don't know how long I was out, but when I woke up again, I decided to call my best friend for help. She lived about a quarter mile away. It was Saturday, December 7. She did not answer and I later learned she was out Christmas shopping. Next, I thought I would try my brother and sister-in-law who lived about a half mile from me.
Blurrily, I stared at the numbers on the phone. I wasn't able to dial their number, but I did manage to find someone at home. Problem was, I didn't know this lady. At the time, I do remember for some reason thinking she was elderly. After asking to speak to my brother, she replied, "You've got the wrong number." I apologized and hung up.
I suppose I must have hit the re-dial button because the same voice answered the phone. She recognized my voice as well, asking, "Are you sick?"
"Yes, sick" I whispered.
"Who are you trying to call?" she questioned.
"My brother, Ronnie, and my sister-in-law, Gail." I mumbled their last name as I hung up the phone and quickly passed out.
Waking again, my sister-in-law and niece were standing over me. "Tracy, did you fall?" Gail asked gently.
"No," I said groggily, "I'm sick." I did not know I had actually fallen through the attic until much later.
"We're going to call the paramedics," my niece, Amanda, added quietly. I was already too out of it to answer.
Coming around again, I heard my sister-in-law say, "The first responders are here, Tracy. Amanda's letting them in now."
"NOOO!" I squealed. "You have to promise me something before you let them in here." I had enough sense to realize that the first responders would be people that I go to church with each Sunday. I didn't want them seeing me in my underwear!
Gail hurriedly promised to keep me covered with the bed sheet. I couldn't stand the thought of running into them on Sunday morning knowing they had seen me in my undies! My biggest fear exposed by a bang on the head!
I was taken to the hospital where I spent seven days--six in ICU and one in a regular room. I had fractured my skull, broken my left shoulder blade, and suffered multiple bruises.
"You need to realize your guardian angels were cushioning your fall because there are many people who don't survive a fall like that!" my doctors marveled. They could not believe I was not more seriously injured (although I was injured quite badly) from the eleven foot drop to the concrete floor.
I am so incredibly grateful to my anonymous wrong number who decided to find my brother's name in the phone book and call until she reached my sister-in-law. The lady told her she felt like something was wrong and that I needed help.
Also, my wonderful school family took care of me. I had to be out of work for four months while I healed. My colleagues donated leave days to me. As a result, I never had to stress over losing pay while I concentrated on getting well!
God kept my boys happily asleep for almost the entire time I was unconscious. Mason, my oldest son, did wake up, but my sister-in-law and niece were there by then and were able to keep him from seeing my pain and worrying about his mama!
Now I celebrate every birthday with a smile and a prayer of thanks because I know how incredibly lucky I was to survive that December freefall!