Monday, October 01, 2007

Bad to the Bone

I am typing this a little awkwardly, with nine functional fingers, on Fellow Traveler's computer. My left thumb, which is actually supposed to be in repose somewhere above the level of my heart, is swollen, swathed in bandages, and stinging from about five stitches.

It was like this: I hate fall household chores with a passion, but this weekend I'd decided to bite the bullet and put the storm windows back up at Cold Comfort Cottage. Sunday afternoon, after church, I set about doing this -- taking down the screens, washing the windows, then toting the storm windows up from the basement, washing them and slipping them into place.

I was very nearly done; I just had one kitchen window and the bathroom window to go. I retrieved the bathroom storm window from its slot in the cellar and slid it up the basement stairs. As I reached the top of the steps and readjusted the grip on the window, the metal frame inexplicably slipped off in my hands...and the raw edge of the glass caught me in the thumb. A geyser of blood shot out. All I could think, for a split second, was that the top joint of my thumb was about to fall over like a loose hinge, or fall off entirely.

"HELP ME!" I screamed.

Fellow Traveler came rushing over; wrapped a clean dishtowel around my thumb and had me bear down on a pressure point; and then we sped to the ER.

It's funny how blood makes even the normally laconic staff of Outer Podunk General's emergency room sit up and take notice -- I was immediately whisked inside.

The good news is that my bones, ligaments and nerves seem all right despite the deep cut. The bad news is that I wound up with five stitches (note to the fellow accident-prone: If you're going to lacerate your thumb, stay away from your nail bed -- when they shoot the numbzit up there before suturing it, it is going to hurt like hell, much worse than the original injury), and I have to drastically curtail my hand movement for the time being. I called in sick at work, because the prospect of driving 45 miles to our satellite office and then alternating hunt-and-peck keyboarding with propping my arm above heart level, my thumb aloft in hitchhiker mode, did not seem particularly appealing or prudent this morning.

Well, it's time for me to hoist my thumb again, so I must go.


Teri said...

boo! heal well!

MikeF said...

-Shudder- Horrible injury: makes the blood run cold thinking about it. (As a guitar player, hand injuries are particularly squirm-inviting.)

Keep warm, keep it elevated, don't drink too much to numb the pain. And tell FT to make a proper fuss of you ;-)

Praying for you!


Trish said...

Hey, I hope things heal for you quickly! Chocolate is a good remedy for what ails ya.

RevHRod said...

Three stitches from a box cutter last year. Left thumb. My deepest sympathies! But my father would say, hurt thumb better than no thumb. His was nipped off when he was a toddler by a slammed door. Yikes!

David said...

Wow, that's quite a story. I hope your thumb heals quickly.

Counselor in Process said...

That's a hard hard job. The next time you have a few extra bucks, have storm windows installed or...hire a boy (or girl.)
I hope you heal well.

lutheranmom said...

Ouch.Prayers going up for quick healing.

LutheranChik said...

In response to all the kind remarks and advice: No, I didn't try to drown the pain in drink, but I did indulge in dark-chocolate therapy and a bout of self-pity;-). Today, Tuesday, much of the pain is gone -- just an acute twinge now and then -- but the sutures are itching like the dickens, and I am powerless to do anything about it. I have my finger encased in a foam-padded splint but am otherwise trying to use both hands as much as I'm able. One unexpected benefit of this incident -- no dish washing for the next 10 days.;-) Although I'm not sure it's worth it.

toujoursdan said...

Your hand might be stiff once you get the sprint off. Do some exercises before any lifting.

Kievas said...

Ouch...hope healing is quick!