“Sometimes you have to let go of the picture of what you thought life would be like and learn to find joy in the story you are actually living.”Unknown
It was just a regular school day.
My job is never boring and keeps me very busy. I have been blessed to experience teaching many different year levels and abilities whilst working at my school, and last year was no exception. I was given the exciting challenge of teaching the brand new reception students.
There were only five more minutes of lunch play time in the playground. The countdown was on. Five more minutes of lunch play time meant we were just an hour away from home time!!!
I and several other staff members were on duty at this time. I was over by the sandpit area, where some of the children were digging in the sandpit, others were on the swing, and some on the climbing frame.
I look up.
One of my students was sitting on top of the climbing frame. He looked anxious, like he was struggling to find his way back down to the ground. This happens quite often during the week, and he manages to get himself down safely with a little bit of guidance and navigation support.
This predicament was not something new to me, and in my head I knew how to assist him down safely.
On this day, I decided to climb up a couple of rails on the climbing frame just to get a little closer to him. I pointed to where he needed to place his foot next, he did it, and again and again and again until he was down at my level. I placed my foot on the next rail down to get myself back down on the ground as I knew he’d be fine without my navigation support from here. Before I could, my student had hold of my top, and I lost my balance as he jumped safely to the ground next to me.
I tumbled, I kept tumbling until I fell and hit the back left side of my head on a metal pole, and fell to the ground.
That’s all it took.
Five minutes to change my entire life. A statement I very much was not aware of at the time.
The fall didn’t knock me unconscious, I remember every second of the accident. I remember this sudden rush I felt all through my head.
It was like a sudden explosion. A sudden fuzzy explosion.
It felt like my head was moving back and forth for a little while. Like the feeling you sometimes get when you may or may not have had too much to drink on a Friday night!
I looked around to see if anyone could see me on the ground. I remember lying there thinking to myself “gee I hope I fell gracefully, good one Lauren!” Trying to laugh it off.
I took a few minutes on the ground to gather myself, I was definitely a bit lost and I knew I wasn’t thinking clearly.
I felt fuzzy, really fuzzy.
I knew something was wrong, and that’s when the shock kicked in; and we all know rational thinking is definitely not occurring when you’re in shock! As follows….
The longer I stayed on the ground, the more I kept thinking about my hands. Oh my goodness did my hands hurt! With the amount of pain I was in I thought I must have broken my wrist or something. I kept thinking about ice, I just wanted ice for my hands.
So what do you do when you’ve just hit your head and you’re not thinking properly? You go get some ice!
I got myself up, dusted off my very carefully picked out outfit for the day I’m sure, and walked off to get some ice.
I walked passed a couple of staff members in the playground as I was walking off. I think I remember them asking if I was okay, I must have had a terrible look on my face. To be honest, this part I can’t really remember. I don’t remember if I answered anyone, and plus I’m sure if I did answer, my answer would have been “yea I’m fine”. I’m not one for fuss, I mean if I’m bleeding or badly injured then yes please, kick up a fuss! But I just needed ice, or so I thought. I realise now that I was badly injured, and it just goes to show how uneducated I was about what I was in for next.
It only took a few minutes after getting ice for my hands for more symptoms to present themselves. I was having difficulty finding words, I knew what I wanted to say, but I had to really think about each word and concentrate to get it out. My vision started to go really blurry, I couldn’t focus on the objects and what I was seeing around me, and my goodness did I have a headache! I was having sharp pains down my neck and spine, and the shoulder I must have landed on was aching like hell.
Yes, I know what you’re thinking, I shouldn’t have moved myself from where I fell. But I was so confused and not thinking properly.
I was in shock, I was scared and I was in pain.
So, naturally, off I go to hospital where I was, first, yelled at for moving myself, and second, instructed not to move, and nurses rushed to my side to put me in a neck brace and lay me down. I swear, laying in the hospital with a neck brace on, unable to move, was one of the most scariest moments of my entire life. I don’t think I’ve ever been that scared before. Doctors and nurses surrounded me as they sent me off for x rays and physical movement assessments. Much to my shock, with the incredible pain I was in with both of my wrists, I didn’t break a thing! Apparently, all I had to show from my fall was the tiniest, most pathetic looking graze on my wrists one ever did see! (Good one Lauren!)
I was discharged later that night with a concussion, and was told to report to my GP clinic the next day for further testing.