Monday, September 5, 2011


Lying on the floor of the small, cold, room, she was sure that she was about to draw her last breath.  How could her life have come down to this?  Just yesterday she was happily going about her daily routine unaware of the impending attempt on her life.  Wracked with pain she raised her head to peer into the darkened room beyond the door.  Can she drag her weak body to the phone?  Can she get help?  Or, has the poison advanced too far into her system to allow her to move.                     

Again and again the spasms came.  She wretched for what seemed like an eternity and then her bowels began to empty.  How could Marie have done this to her?  It must have been some kind of bizarre accident.   She passed out for a while only to be awakened by the howl of her faithful dog in the next room.  He knew she was in trouble, but he could not extricate himself from his night-time crate. 

Knowing it would soon be too late, she managed to slowly inch herself across the floor.  With her last bit of energy she pulled herself up to the counter and called for help.  Help arrived within a few minutes and she was whisked off to the hospital where it was confirmed that she had been poisoned.   Poisoned by Marie Callendar with one of her famous CafĂ© Steamers.

Ok, so I'm NOT a novel worthy writer, but that was the situation I found myself in at one AM on Tuesday, July 11.   I finally made it to the ER room around six AM.  It was a tad more fun than the gastronomical events occurring on the bathroom floor.   There was nothing left to pump from my stomach as I had purged everything but my appendix and the three toenails that had yet to be sucked from my feet.  So they hooked me up with fluids to rehydrate me (since I was starting to look like a Tim Burton character from one of his  bizarre films).

By that afternoon I was back home and laying in my recliner, sipping 7Up.
I felt awful, but I was on the mend.  At seven PM I started to get up to fix my father his dinner. That is when the REST OF THE STORY developed.

I couldn’t get out of my recliner!  I mean, no matter what I did I could not pull my behind up out of the chair.  I have never experienced anything like this before.  First, I started a bouncy-bouncy routine hoping that one of the bounces would get me high enough to get my feet under me.  Nope!  Didn’t work.  Next, I started a rocking motion to try and propel my body out of the chair… … No luck there either (however, I almost turned the chair over backwards).  After trying several other ideas I finally got myself turned around backwards in the chair and pushed away with my arms.  To my relief that worked and I was up on my sock covered feet (key phrase).

Slowly, I walked into the kitchen, opened the refrigerator and extracted what I would need for Dad’s meal.  You know the phrase weak as a kitten; well I understand that phrase now.  Like a sloth moving through the forest I made my way to across the kitchen floor when (not so sloth like) one foot slid one way, and one foot slid the other.  Onto a step stool I fell.  I was in a semi splits pose (down on my left knee and up on my right heel)  and clinging for dear life onto that darned step stool.  No matter how hard I tried I could not push myself up off of the step stool.  The only thing I could do was to allow myself to fall to the side.  As I leaned away from the small ladder I remember saying aloud,, “Oh, Mannnnn, this is going to hurt!”  And it did!

This put me on the floor and then that damned darned (oh, to hell with it) damned TV add flashed through my brain,  I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.   I started to laugh (yes, really).  I lay there laughing when my dad clomped (no, he doesn't let his walker roll smoothly he goes step- step-step and then picks it up and plants it further away = he clomps) into the kitchen to see what was going on. 

“Can I help you up?” he said.   This made me laugh all the more.  I could just see the both of us lying on the floor until the cows came home.

“No, Dad, just get me a phone,” I replied.  To this Dad clomped off in search of a phone.  Now, understand this, I have a phone in EVERY room, but Dad couldn’t find one (you see he is hard of hearing and hasn’t used a phone since the old cradle type).

In Dad clomps again.  “I can’t find a phone.”

“It’s by the microwave,” I croak.

“Where’s the microwave?”  he asks (while standing about one foot from it).

I tell him to go sit down in his chair and then I started to crawl through the kitchen floor. 
Actually, it wasn’t a crawl it was more like a scoot and I could only manage a few inches at a time.  While communing so closely with the floor I noticed that it needed a good scrubbing and I started laughing again (I mean what a time to start thinking about scrubbing the floor).  It took me forty-five minutes to make my way across the floor to where I could see the table, and there I spotted a phone.

I hollered (screamed really loud) for Dad and he eventually retrieved the phone from the table for me.  I called 911, then told Dad to unlock the front door.  I laid there on my not so clean kitchen floor waiting for my total humiliation to begin.


In just a few minutes two police officers walk through the front door and into the kitchen.  Remembering the routine my dad had to go through when we called for someone to help him off the bathroom floor; I rattled off my name, where I was, what day and month it was, and what happened.  They smiled, looked at each other, and the male said, “I see you do this often.”  They helped me up and planted me in Dad’s wheel chair (at my request).  They then suggested I get one of those little buttons that would summon help if this ever happened again (why would I do that when it is obviously much more fun!)

I wheeled around the kitchen, got Dad’s dinner (2 hours late), and stayed in that darned wheel chair until bedtime.  Since it would not go through my bedroom door I got out, and walked (thinking that I had a nice, clean, well padded rug on my floor and I could sleep there if I fell again.)  while holding onto everything possible.   I eventually made it to my bed, and collapsed.  Suddenly it hit me, "Hey, they send an ambulance when Dad falls, but they send cops when I fall!  What's up with that?"  Then I started laughing again. 

The following morning the weakness was gone.  I found out later that this is one of the side effects of food poisoning.  Much to my chigrin, I have 6 more of these dinners in my freezer.  Well, what's the chance that this could happen again?  I'm so cheap that I guess I will find out........ someday.

kt 7/2011

SO, BE THERE OR BE SQUARE (Oh, that is soooooooo lame).