Thursday, February 18, 2010

Date Night

“Well, we’re out together on a Friday night. And I’m nude.”

My husband really did say those exact words to me last Friday night. And they were true. Unfortunately we were in the emergency room, he on a stretcher, me by his side, both of us in the corridor waiting for an orderly to wheel him over to the operating room for surgery.

He’d fallen on a patch of ice on his way home from the bus stop. His feet slipped out from under him and he landed entirely (and wrongly) on his ankle, which was dislocated and fractured. A neighbor moved him into my car, we went to the nearest hospital, and they moved him onto a stretcher and into an examining room. Then hospital procedures took over.

Hospitals seem like alternative universes in some ways. Time doesn’t work the same way in there. I remember realizing this the first time I was in labor – thinking that everything seemed to take forever to happen, but also that time seemed to gallop along much more quickly than you’d expect. That was certainly the case on this Friday night, where Scott was examined, x-rayed, sedated, reduced (that’s what you call it when the doctor pops the joint back into place), x-rayed again, and ultimately prepped for surgery. He was in the operating room four hours after he was wheeled in the door, which seemed like forever and also seemed like no time at all.

It felt as if a million little miracles happened that night. First off, that Scott managed to avoid being run over by the neighbor who was backing down the driveway that he lay at the base of. That we were considered at the top of the triage list. That the orthopedist was already in the ER when we arrived. That the nurses were able to remove Scott’s favorite pants without having to cut them.

Every time a “worst case scenario” was presented, it never came to be. Little miracles, just like that, until the miracle of all miracles: ten o’clock on a Friday night, my husband and I are out together -- him naked, me awake. But alas, we’re not alone.


  1. Wow - - that's quite a recovery! My ankle is held together by pins, screws, wire meshing and two rods up to my knee. I no longer buzz in airports, however; I walk, ski, run and do just about everything else you can imagine. Your four hour ordeal was merely a hic-cup in the road to recovery. My heart goes out to him...and YOU.

  2. robin sloane seibertFebruary 19, 2010 at 5:29 AM

    I guess those little things are really what counts--and actually having that kind of luck in the ER--well I don't count that as little, that is big.
    Thanks for the story, Jess, and for sharing it with us.