The Accident

I looked at the X-Ray for the first time with the Ear, Nose and Throat Doctor in Manhattan. “See: look, it doesn’t look like you’ll need any surgery. You’re nose looks like it will heal perfectly fine.” He said pointing to the profile shot of my face. I saw a tiny piece of bone sticking out from my skull, which is supposed to support my nose, it was broken in to three pieces. Holy Cow, I thought. That tiny piece of bone is all that connects my nose to my skull! I saw the outline of my skin and cartilage and jaw. Everything else looked completely normal. I thought back to the panic I felt when the doctor in the ER told me about the results from the X-Ray. I heaved a sigh of relief. So, I don’t need surgery to fix anything. It looks like my nose will be fine in a couple of weeks. OK.
I was bike riding in Brooklyn when I got into the accident. Thinking (or, really not thinking) like the super-woman I thought I was, I decided to hop a driveway and avoid a truck that was parked in the middle of the bike lane. Whoops. There goes my front tire, Bike stops moving, and I don’t. I definitely got airborne and then stopped my fall with a WHAM and an ugggghhhhhh on my face. Thankfully I was wearing my helmet (jeeze, had I not been…I don’t want to think about that outcome). I rolled on to my side and stood up immediately, although I knew instantaneously that something was very wrong with my nose. My knees felt pretty banged up, and my chin was wet, which meant I must have hit that as well. A Jogger (who was the only person in the area) ran up to me and appraisingly looked over my face. “You’re chin is a little pink.” she said. “Sorry, I don’t carry my cell on me when I jog, but there is a BP gas station up the street if you need to call an ambulance?” After assuring her that I was fine I watched her jog off.
I find it interesting how I react when I trip or hurt myself. There is a part of me that takes over, no matter how bad the damage is, that says ‘I’M FINE! TOTALLY FINE EVERYBODY WHO SAW THAT! PLEASE DON’T ASK ME HOW I AM BECAUSE I’M FINE! ‘K?’ when really, I’m not fine, I just don’t want the weird looks, the embarrassing stares or the chuckles. Not that there was anyone in the area to really do that the afternoon I broke my nose, but as soon as the jogger ran off I found myself shaking all over. Ok, Nat. How bad is this really? I did a mental check. My nose was bleeding: Not good. My knees were killing me, I must have banged them pretty good. My chin was scraped, but not too bad. My hands… not too bad either. I guess this could be worse. I whipped out my cell and took some pictures of my face. Something is really wrong with my nose. I tried not to panic. I need to get home, except, oh wait… I am in the middle of Brooklyn and 45 minutes from home by bike. Not good.

My Parents were super heroes that day. Within only a few hours I was whisked away from Brooklyn, picked up by car and taken to St. Barnabas Hospital in the ‘burbs of Jersey. I was attended to briefly by an ambulance who came to see me in Brooklyn after I realized that the blood streaming from my nose was not something to ignore. But declined a ride to the hospital in Williamsburg. Are you kidding? I am not leaving my bike at the police precinct and then waiting for 6 hours in an ER. No. I’ll call in the troops and go to the whiter than white suburbs where the ER visit won’t cost me a whole day of my life.
In New Jersey, I was told to sit in a chair and wait for the radiologist. I slumped and stared at my surroundings. I was led in to a room that looked like it was right out of some sci-fi space ship control room. There was a bed and a huge machine that hung from the ceiling. There were a bunch of monitors behind a window and a woman in white kept walking back and forth from examination room to monitor room. Every time she walked in to the monitor room a high pitched laser sound went off and then I saw a picture of an ankle appear on a screen. Wow. That’ll be me soon.
“Just stand facing the light, please” I was told. I felt like I was in a police line up. “Right side, please. Now turn to your left and don’t move.” Where was my ID card with my name that I needed to hold up? I thought about what the point of smiling was. I guess this would be one of the only pictures I could take where it really does not matter what I do with my face. Not that I can really smile anyway, it hurt too much. The thought of not being able to smile made me want to laugh. Everything made me want to laugh. Suddenly not being able to laugh made the effort to not do so almost unbearable. I can only wheeze, which I find pretty funny, so I laugh/wheeze more. “Hold Still!” buzzzzzzzblap! Somewhere a picture of my nose filled a monitor.
As of now, I’m fine. I’ve got a nice, ripe, purple shiner developing on my right eye, and my knees are pretty bruised, but I’m being treated with a ton of TLC by my family who surrounded me with such a fierce ring of love that I was overcome with emotions a couple of times the last 24 hours. I am so grateful for all the support I got on Facebook and through the phone calls and texts I got. Now I need to come up with a good story about how I got the look of the “Battered wife” I’ll be rocking for the next few days…

November 11, 2011 at 10:51 am by Natalie Allen