This isn’t a shiny happy topic, but I’m presenting it because I think it is kinda interesting. Not to generate sympathy. Although it may. But I’m cool over here. Really.
I’d guess I fall once every six months. The last time all the guys were over. That was easy. Or the day I got stuck in bed because that required help too. But those were pretty easy.
The worst falls aren’t the ones that hurt. Most don’t. I’ve banged my head a bit and sometimes my legs get a bit twisted under me. But no injuries make this list. These are all the scariest times. And scary comes from isolation or helplessness.
3. Soon after I wasn’t able to stand on my own anymore, maybe 6 or 7 years ago, maybe more, I fell while out getting comics. This is pre-walker, but post-cane The ramp to the old comics store was a hazard. Any wet or ice made it slippery. I slipped right near the bottom and fell. Normally when I fall outside people rush to help. But not this time. I butt marched over to my car and tried to get in, but it didn’t work. In the end I called my Mom for help. It was bad because no one helped and some folks drove by. And because I hate calling Mom. She worries and can’t really help lifting anyway.
2. This one prompted me to get an alert pendant to call for help. And to never walk in the dark – I always keep lights on even if I need to go ahead and turn them on and then go back to turn them off again. On my way to bed, I turned off the front hall light and went down the bedroom hall. My walker caught the closet door sliding track, twisted and stopped. I also twisted but momentum moved me forward. Then I went down. It turned out to be bad for two reasons. First I found I was no longer strong enough to sit up. So I was stuck in place. Second, my phone had been on my walker and went flying. In the pitch dark, flat on my back I had no idea how to get help. I finally relaxed and began a search for the phone. It had went into the closet. I shimmied the half foot required to get it and called Dave. Dave rescued me. (it’ll be the same rescuer in the next one.). The dark, the constrained space of the hall, my mostly immobility and the lack off options made that one really suck.
1. But #1 with a bullet. This one is also embarrassing, I’m debating giving the whole details… I’m could still sit up and shimmy on my butt this time. It was a few years ago. The fix was raising my toilet and replacing my standing aid and starting to carry my phone everywhere I fell getting off the toilet. I had a chair in the washroom. I’d pull it in front of me and lock my elbows on the seat and lever my legs up behind me. No idea what went wrong. But I slipped. I didn’t fall exactly, but my chest went flat on the chair seat, my feet had no traction, I couldn’t get me arms under me again and my head was trapped between the seat and the chair back. I was immobile. I was still kinda seated on the toilet, but had no way to get my head out and sit back up. I needed to tip the chair over, fall the rest of the way. It was very scary. I was worried about my neck. It was a short fall, but yeesh. And what if my head was still stuck when I hit the ground?
But it worked. However although that was the worst bit, it wasn’t over. My bathroom is tiny. Especially with a big guy and a fallen chair on the ground. And my flailing had caused some water to leak from somewhere. Just a small puddle at the back of the toilet but that was where my feet were and they were slick and slippery now. Getting sitting and making my way into a corner to I could open the bloody door was not easy. Not too scary because I always made progress and didn’t feel helpless, but it was hard.
Then comes the embarrassing part. This was before I carried a phone everywhere, so I needed to get out and butt wiggle to a phone. Um, I was naked, planning on taking a shower next. And I had, um, cleaned myself after the, um, toilet having never made it to my feet. So after you could track my progress on the carpet by the, um, brownish trail I left behind me. First to the phone, then to unlock the door, then to my bedroom to get underwear before my rescuer showed up. Really it is kind of funny. I saw a cat do the same thing once and although it was disgusting, it was also hilarious.
So worst because the fall after the fall and having my head trapped was terrifying. And embarrassing because of the mess I made that I couldn’t hide.
Most of these worries are moot now. The call pendant I have is always on and always with me. So the last two I would have just called from my falling place. So no need to be worrying about me. I’m cool.