As I was laying in bed earlier, my fingertips hovering over my laptop’s keyboard, I struggled to recall what I was up to last week post-stairs incident. The past two weeks in general have been such a blur. Originally I was going to talk about everything in one post, but it was getting ridiculously long. We’ll be breaking it up into two parts, continuing on Friday!
Let’s start at the beginning, shall we?On Thursday, April 19th, my grandmother died. Unfortunately we weren’t very close. As a result, I didn’t really know what or how I felt. A few days later, a Sunday, was her wake. That was when I fell down the stairs. The day after that was the burial, but unfortunately I wasn’t up to going thanks to chronic illness and, you know, tumbling down concrete steps. On Tuesday, I had an appointment with my POTS doctor, where he performed a surprise tilt table test and gave me two new diagnoses. Then there was Wednesday, which consisted of an emergency appointment with my dentist to assess the damage from the fall and see what could be done.
It’s been a long week, guys.
Part One: The Fall + the Dentist
Let’s talk about the damage from my accident. So, like I said in my last post, I don’t remember much from the actual fall. After talking to family members that were there and from what I could piece together from my own memory, here’s what happened…
I held the door open for my brother and then I turned around to find the railing in order to safely descend the stairs. With the door open, you had to go down a step to reach the railing, which is what I was trying to do. However, my foot didn’t fully land on that next step and my leg, too weak to support me, gave out. I tried to grab onto the railing, but my body was falling the opposite way. I think I hit another step with my right side on the way down, which accounts for the nasty bruises on my hip and thigh.
I didn’t scream or cry while it was happening. It was like the emotional part of my brain shut down, or switched to survival mode. Once my brain accepted the fact that this was actually happening, that I really was falling down the stairs and that I wouldn’t be able to stop it, I did all I could to avoid breaking my nose, or damaging my neck or spine.
My dad told me I shielded my head with my arm, which explains the scrapes and bruises on my left hand. I do remember thinking as I was reaching the bottom that I really didn’t want to break my nose (I was imagining how much that would hurt, funnily enough), so I arched my head up. Incidentally I landed on my two top front teeth instead, chipping them and cutting my lip. One tooth was half the size it used to be, while the other’s chip was barely noticeable.
My bruises and cuts are healing now, though the ones on my right hip and thigh still look pretty bad, to be honest with you. The burning shoulder pain is also back (it had gone away after starting Methotrexate a couple of months ago). My teeth, however… Well, okay, someone meeting me for the first time won’t even notice I chipped my teeth unless I tell them. I, however, who was quite partial to my smile pre-concrete stairs, know that the right tooth is now shorter than the left even after my dentist bonded them. It feels foreign and abnormal in my mouth.
I’m sure I’ll get used to it. I’m sure the pressure I feel when biting on food will go away. I’m sure my cut-up and bruised hand will heal, I’m sure I’ll soon be able to sit down without pain, and I’m sure the all-too-fresh memory of hearing my family cry out will fade. As of right now, though… I guess I’m just taking it day by day.
In part two, we’ll talk about last Tuesday’s cardio appointment and my two new diagnoses. Be sure to follow this blog via email to be notified as soon as it goes live on Friday!