Saturday, April 01, 2006

# 133 AN EVENTFUL DAY - Part I

The Suicide Cut

Yesterday was an eventful day that I prefer to never repeat. After Hub left for work I was having a bath. And while doing so I noticed a pair of scissors within easy reach on the counter. Now I don’t know what kind of fool would attempt to cut their toenails in the bathtub, but that is what I decided to do. So there I am, still in the bathtub, twisted into a pretzel with one foot in the air so I can reach my toenails, trying to position the scissors under a toenail. You know it. Water is slippery, scissors are slippery, skin is slippery, add soap to this and things become ominously slick. And that’s when it happened. The scissors suddenly slipped and the point jabbed hard into the suicide-coordinates on the inside of my wrist.

Now most small cuts don’t begin to bleed immediately, and when underwater the blood is even less evident. I know that from shaving nicks in my legs over the years. In these situations, I haven’t even known that I’ve cut myself until I’m out of the tub, dried off, hair styled, teeth brushed, make-up on, housecoat on, and I’m ready to put on nylons. That’s when bright red drops of blood begin to reveal secrets of where I obliviously nicked the skin.

But no delayed bleeding here. Immediately there is enough blood for me to realize my wrist has a clean slit at the suicide coordinates. So I leapt from the tub, wrapped my wrist in a towel and dried it as briskly as I could. At the same time I grabbed the first aid box I keep in the bathroom drawer and began pulling out bandages. Fabric bandages, plastic bandages, clear bandages, all that I could grab at one time.

I found myself mentally reciting in my head at breakneck speed Hub’s advice about wounds like this. ‘Tape the cut crossways. Get it tightly pressed together. Then wrap it the other way.’ This I managed to do, but with the dampness, I knew that first bandage would let loose soon if I didn’t hurry to tape it the other way.

Now you know some bandages stick and some don’t but in a panic situation like this, no one is sorting them. Without discrimination, I ripped open anything that resembled a band-aid and layered them on. Two crossways on the slit, then another six or so overlapping around my wrist. Firmly tight, but not so tight as to risk cutting off circulation. Bandage wrappings flew like cookie crumbs fly from Cookie Monster’s mouth. Honestly, if you had seen the bathroom when I got done, you’d have thought the only thing I had to open those bandages was one arm with a hook. There were tiny bits of paper, bigger bits of paper, and discarded band-aids folded over on themselves every which way. It looked as if I opened three or more boxes of bandages. And perhaps I did. But the situation, like I said, was too critical to be selective and too critical for me to even think of looking for the little paper flaps or pull-strings for opening them. I just ripped and tore with my teeth and nails at two to three bandages at one time.

So now, for the time being, the band-aids are holding and the blood seems to be stopped. Realizing this, I finally began to calm down. I quickly mopped the water from the rest of my still dripping limbs. Then I re-examined my wrist and horror of horrors. There I see a huge stain seeping into the edges of the outermost band-aid. A stain that was not red, or scarlet, or crimson, or brown, or even reddish-brown or any color of blood that I have ever seen in my past. This stain is blue. Dark blue. Big royal f---ing blue. What is going on? Panic reasserts itself and fractures my thoughts into tiny confusing bits and pieces.

‘Physiology – circulation – blood – royal blood – fact – fiction – posters in doctor’s office – depictions of blood flow - blue track – red track – always separate - one entering heart, one leaving – oxygenated – not oxygenated – blue direct from the heart – red from the extremities – aorta red – vein blue or is it the other way around – I want to remember – can’t remember.” I look again at the bandage and yes that large stain is blue – dark blue like stamp pad ink. Not red, just blue.

This is not good. I think the band-aid is swelling into a bubble at the wound. No doubt due to the pressure of the hard rush of aortic blood direct from my vital organs. I simply must get to the hospital and get there quickly.

Next Post: AN EVENTFUL DAY - Part II, coming up very soon.


Blogger Me said...

I'm on the edge of my seat!

8:35 AM  
Anonymous Homer said...

It's funny cause it's truuuuue.

11:22 PM  
Blogger She Dances in Dragon said...

I didn't think Canadians did April Fools? Please, please tell me this is an April Fools joke... 'Cause you got me good.
Ooh! My skin is all scrunched up in horror!

7:51 AM  
Blogger Roberta said...

me, just hang on, the rest is coming. And yes, homer it is truuuue.

And she dances in dragon don't be putting your mind at ease just yet, cause this is NOT a late April Fool's joke. This is real life in my corner of the woods.

9:51 AM  

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