Thursday, October 11, 2007

In fractured metacarpals and in health...

On Tuesday Bill's side job as Superman took a bad turn. After leaping over a tall concrete barricade he landed on his head and shoulder and injured his hand. He was attending a meeting and when he shakily returned to his colleagues he whispered to one of them that he hurt himself and might have minor shock. He got ice on it and called me requesting my assistance as he went to the Urgent Care clinic. I walked in with him, wrote down his information and sat to his right on the bench.

While we waited, our youngest youngster in his car seat, I examined Bill's shoulder and head. Both had minimal abraisons. Then I looked at his hand and it was definitely swelling. I suddenly realized that they would have to cut his wedding ring off if the swelling continued. I tried turning it as Bill gasped and whimpered. A lady who was with her mother offered a small tube of hand lotion to lubricate Bill's finger. It worked and we successfully removed his wedding ring. Bill described the feeling inside his hand as crunching. We were called for more information and our copay which I handled as well. Then I sat on his left - his injured side - and tried to comfort him with an arm around his shoulder. As well-intentioned as it was he uttered a guttural protest to my affectionate gesture and the others waiting laughed. I felt silly and apologized nervously.

When Bill was finally called in he was examined, x-rayed, and examined again. The x-ray confirmed that he had splintered the fourth metacarpal of his left hand. He has an appointment to get a cast on Monday but he has a hand splint and a bottle of vicodin to get him through. In other words, his Superman days are suspended. He stayed home from work Tuesday afternoon but has been to work yesterday and today. However, being forced to alter his duties and slow down is hardly simple or easy.

Once a man of multiple abilities and talents he must do most of his jobs one-handed. Once a man of razor-sharp wit and responsiveness he requires further explanation and simpler queries. Now he is a hand-splinted acetaminophen and hydrocodone-hazed Super-de-dooper-man!

And I will be his extra pair of hands as he opens soda bottles, butters toast or ties his shoes or buttons, zips, and belts his pants. And when evening falls I will be his sofa-buddy as we sit through our ample supply of Twilight Zone episodes. Death Ship is especially tragic in a funny kind of way...


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