Monday, August 25, 2008


Yes, I still have fingers...they're just hiding.

I will spare you the details, but I had a small run-in with a conveyor that has resulted in almost a week off of work, and that nifty little wrap job seen above.

There are no broken bones, and nothing will need to be grafted, but I will have to contend with quite the little (ha! little...ha!) friction burn for the next little bit. According to the doctor, everything is progressing nicely, and I was cleared to go back to work this Monday. With any luck, I'll be able to ditch the gauze and the wrapping on Friday.

In my brief respite, I have learned a few things, primarily that you never really realize how much you use your other hand, until you CAN'T USE YOUR OTHER HAND.

It would have been nice for the staff of the clinic to inform me that I needed to take a whiz quiz (to insure I wasn't intoxicated on the job at the time of injury), before they splinted me and wrapped me up like a mummy. Really. How was I supposed to manage THAT?

The nurse (who also did my x-rays) was very sympathetic. She looked at me and said, "I'm so sorry sweetie. You've had quite the day." Damn near in tears I looked at her and said, "I have gotten my hand bitten by a conveyor. You guys gave me a tetanus shot. I have been wrapped up and x-rayed. I have cramps. And you want me to pee in a cup? Can I just go home?"

As a public service announcement, and this is key, do not assume that just because you are standing in front of the pharmacist, with a hand wrapped up beyond recognition, and have handed them a prescription for Darvocet, that they will have the foresight to give you a non-childproof cap.

Of course, in your fog of pain, you will not realize this until you get home, and by then it is too late. Try as you might, that bugger isn't going to budge. What will result, in a stroke of genius, is that you brace the damn pill bottle against the splint, and place it upside down on the counter, and push down and twist, without dropping the bottle. There will be much cursing, but eventually you will get it open, and by golly, without sending any pills flying.

Ladies, this next part applies to only us, as the boys will never understand. Bras. This is usually a two handed procedure, to put on, and take off. After I was dropped off at my house last Tuesday, I wanted nothing more than to change into my jammies and just sleep. I stopped short when I realized that I could not twist and bend the way I needed to in order to take off my bra. I tried, somewhat half-assed, but gave up at the first twinge of pain in my elbow from trying to contort myself. Lord knows I didn't need anything else injured at that point! I dealt with being poked in the boob by an underwire for the rest of the afternoon and evening.

Joe came up that night to take care of me, and brought me pizza from Dolly's, and also dumped the Motrin 600, Darvocet, and antibiodic into a freezer jam container, because I knew that I could get into that easily. Pizza was not as easily consumed, as I managed to flip it upside down on to the carpet. It was good to curl up with him and just stop moving. He also assisted in the bra situation.


Joe left me sleeping the next morning, and I woke up with a very painful reminder of the previous day's events. It became very clear, very quickly, that cooking was not going to be easy, or quick. You need two hands to cut things, so fruit was out, unless I was chomping into it. Takes two hands to steady a bowl to either crack eggs into, or pour cereal and milk into, so that was out.

*taps nails on counter*

This was not going to be easy. I needed food to take with the antibiodics and the pain meds, so not eating wasn't an option. I finally got myself into some cut up watermelon I had in the fridge, but not before dropping a piece on my bed, which currently has my white sheets on it.

Clarice came up that night to help me out with things like the garbage and cleaning up the kitchen a bit. She also took me to Kroger to buy some food that was a bit more accessible, yet that wasn't going to cause me to gain 50 lbs before this was all over. When we got home, she sliced up a cucumber for me and stuck it in the fridge. (God I love that woman.)

Sherri stopped by with a basket of goodies from her, Melissa, and Stacey. Little chocolates, these divine little snack cakes from Papa Joe's, two cookbooks, a food and wine magazine, and the DVD of Princess Bride. It's good to have girlfriends. :)

By Friday, I was determined to make eggs for breakfast. I needed real food. I'd had leftover pizza, canned ravioli, the entire cucumber Reesey had cut up, one of the little snack cakes, and pretty much whatever I could get my hand on that I could open.

I placed the bowl on my counter, removed two eggs from the carton and set about trying to figure out how I was going to do this. I do not doubt the purpose of the stupid splint they had me in, but good god, could that thing get any more in the way? I braced the bowl against the splint, and kinda sorta successfully cracked the two eggs into the bowl.


Now to scramble them. I did an okay job, and managed to only get egg on the counter and not the rest of me. I will not lie when I tell you that it was the best scrambled eggs and toast I've tasted in a long time.

As I was cleaning up the mess, I had made, I grabbed for my canister of Clorox wipes from under the counter. Anyone who has ever used this wonderful product, knows that getting them to stay in the little holder in the cap is damn near impossible, a similar situation with baby wipes, and good luck getting them off the roll.

I tried and I tried to get these little buggers out, and when I finally grasped one, with the canister between my knees, I now was fighting to rip one off. I only needed one, maybe two, and here I was, suddenly waving around a string of about 47 of them, and flinging Clorox wipe juice about my kitchen.

Finally, FINALLY!, I get two of them to come off. I then spend the next minute and half jamming the other 45 back into the canister, slamming the lid shut, throwing it under my kitchen sink, and slamming the cabinet door.


It's been a long couple of days. I have to say, I knew I was going to be okay when I was sitting in the exam room at the clinic, checking out the wound on my hand, and thought, "You know...I could get some really awesome shots of my blood vessels and veins right now if I had a macro lens."

As of Monday, I have been de-splinted, so I have more mobility, and can type with two hands again! I've also graduated to using one piece of gauze under all the wrapping, and not two. I've worked out the bra scenario successfully, without losing an eye, and tonight I managed to wash and condition my hair using both hands (even though it hurt like an SOB to do so).

So progress is being made.

While I do hurt, I am annoyed, and I feel like a bit of a dumbass, I also know that I am very lucky that this isn't worse. To doc says that everything is on track, and I should have little to no scarring.

My coworkers have been absolutely fabulous about all this, and have been extremely supportive and caring. Now that they know that I'm going to be okay, I'm starting to take a bit of razzing on the whole situation.

Yesterday, I was informed, and assured, that my next project will not have any conveyors, so all my appendages should be safe, but that they're going to keep an eye on me...just in case.


ChazFrench said...

There are two very important things you need to learn.

1) How to spell Antibiotics. ;^)

2) How to crack an egg with one hand, it's a very useful thing to be able to do, but it takes some practice.

So.. the next time you need to crack a bunch of eggs do this...

Place bowl on counter next to cutting board.

Take an egg in your hand cupping it in your palm, Thumb around the thinner side. and the rest of your fingers holding the egg along the side firmly enough to have a good grip.

Turn your hand to face the cutting board so that the one side of the egg is clearly exposed. With a fair but not excessive amount of force. Hit the egg on the cutting board, then (quickly) raise the egg over the bowl and using your thumb lift the shallow (thinner) end of the egg upwards so that the egg falls into the bowl.

Assuming you've got a bowl for the shells, a sink or other receptacle nearby you may flick the shell into it, and move on to the next egg.

Hmmm I should do a video of this on my site sometime...

Sally Parrott Ashbrook said...

I have to say, I did have more respect for guys being able to remove a woman's bra one-handed after I had to do it myself to myself.