I haven’t written a blog entry in 4 months. It’s not that I’m undisciplined–not this time. I have a good excuse.
It all happened in San Francisco while I was at a week-long painting workshop with Michele Cassou. On Wednesday, I had a date with my beloved daughter for dinner at a local café, and after 4 days of wearing grubby painting clothes, I wanted to get a little dressed up. So, I donned my new knee-high boots, a tunic top and leggings. Then I headed down Diamond Street to the Glen Park BART station.
The buckled, steep sidewalks were wet after a light rain, and the next thing I knew, my feet shoot out from under me. As I tried to break the fall with my left hand, a searing pain shot up my hand and arm. @$&(%@! Oh, it really hurt. Really, really hurt. Not good.
I stopped into Canyon Market to buy some Arnica Montana, and the nice man at the checkout gave me a huge bag of ice. I was using my jacket as a sling, I tucked the ice around my wrist.
My daughter was just coming out of the BART station as I arrived.
“Oh my gosh, Mom! What did you do?!” she exclaimed as she eyed me.
“Oh, I fell and I think I sprained my arm.”
Mom!” she fussed. “Don’t we need to go to the Emergency Room?! What if you broke something!?”
“No, no, no!” I said. “It’s fine. Let’s find a place to have dinner–there are so many cute cafés around here.” The last place I wanted to spend my time was in a hospital. We continued walking, looking at menus and peering into the windows of each little eatery.
My arm started throbbing, and I adjusted my sling-jacket. Ouch!
“You know, maybe I should try to find a drugstore and buy a real sling.” I winced.
My daughter pulled out her iPhone, nimble fingers flying.
“Okay, she said authoritatively. “We need to take the number 56 to Diamond Heights. That’s where the closest drug store is.”
30 minutes later, cradled in the finest sling money could buy, my arm was much worse. My wrist was swollen and purple.
“I think I need to go to the Emergency Room.” I said, resignedly. After getting some very confused directions from a pharmacy employee, we trudged to the designated bus stop.
After ending up in the wrong hospital–one without an Emergency Room–we were shuttled to a UCSF hospital Emergency Room where we waited with 50 other wheezing, hacking, swine flu-ridden people. My daughter’s’s romantic dinner consisted of a pasty, dry panini, half of which landed on the floor. What a trooper!
6 hours and $5000 later, a diagnosis: I had a broken left distal radius, AKA a broken wrist–my first broken bone. I left the hospital with a clamshell splint on my arm all the way up to my elbow to stabilize it until I could go to my orthopedic group to get a cast…
We took a cab back, barely making it to the BART station before the last run to Berkeley. And I actually stayed for the remaining 4 days of the workshop, before driving home one-handed.