Fear of Falling

propic11_1_1This post written by L.Leander, Author of Fearless Fiction

Have you ever taken a fall that changed your life? I have. During my childhood, of course, I fell off my bicycle (yes, I was riding a girl’s bike, and yes, I fell on my private parts), off the monkey bars on the school playground (that one resulted in a chipped front tooth), off tree limbs and being pushed off the raft at the lake by some bully or another. (What they didn’t know is that I had been through lifeguard training and I could whip their butts if I really wanted to).

I have always been in a hurry. I was never sure why, but I had to be the first to get to an event to help get things set up, the first to turn in a term paper, the first to volunteer for duties at my children’s school, such as being room mother and offering to chaperone trips, writing my books, buying old kitchen items that no one wasin a hurry collecting yet (that made me a bit of money) and every other aspect of my life. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been advised to slow down, to no avail.

I was always excited about some new project or other. I had bouts of depression that would last for several days or a month. I did go to the doctor but this was in the 70’s and he prescribed me Valium, which I took for a while, but I was too tired all the time and had children to take care of and a job I loved.

I had the normal falls and scrapes as I walked through my childhood years and a few throughout my next forty years or so. I fell a few times in Mexico because the sidewalks are so uneven and if you aren’t paying close attention, down you go.

MariachiThree years ago while returning from a Christmas Fiesta (on the island where we all hung out during the hottest days of the winter) I jumped off the boat taxi to help Ralph get down. I realized someone else was assisting him so I left to get us a seat on the few benches while we waited for a pulmonia to hire to take us home. Of course, we had had a few Margaritas, along with the best food and dancing you could imagine. At any rate, one minute I was standing up and the next moment I had fallen on my head. I was so embarrassed. All our friends were running to see if I was all right. I had fallen from my feet to my head (don’t know how I did that, but I did), a knot was beginning to form and there was blood – eek!

Friends walked me over to the benches while I kept saying, “I’m all right.” It wasredcross suggested that I needed to go to the Red Cross and be checked over but I declined. Instead, we went home in an Arriga (a red truck), Ralph helped me in the house, and I decided nothing was wrong. Of course, I wouldn’t allow myself to fall asleep just in case, and took no pain pills even though my head was throbbing. The next morning I was happy to be alive, even though my eye was black and blue, and I had spent the entire night thinking I was going to die all alone in the dark living room while hubby slept!

Lucky for me it wasn’t serious. I did go to the doctor the next day but he wasn’t too concerned and  explained that I’d probably had a slight concussion. So, I continued along my frantic path. I had what I thought was a Type “A” personality and didn’t think a bump on the head would change that.

As most of you know, two years ago I had another concussion. Hubby and I had gone to pick up my new glasses. We took the bus as far as we could, picked up the glasses, and had to make our way across a very busy street with crazy drivers. Ralph wasn’t feeling too well that day. Of course, I was ahead of him (clearing a path, ha ha) and when I looked back to see if he was all right my toe caught the edge of a piece of sidewalk and down I went. From feet to toes, exactly the same way it had happened the year before.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAll I could think as I fell was “I can’t pass out, Ralph doesn’t speak Spanish.” And then I passed out. Two kind Mexican ladies came running and Ralph and the two women helped me get up. The ladies said “Es muy mal, yo necessito un doctor.” (It’s very bad, you need a doctor). Ralph looked concerned too. I shrugged it off and refused, saying I was fine. Ralph extricated my clip-on sunglasses that were embedded right above my right eye and I confess, the blood was pouring at a pretty good rate. Ralph insisted I go to the Red Cross, the ladies hailed an ambulance, and off we went. A very kind nurse stitched up my head, I saw a doctor who must have been all of 16 who told me to rest, paid my $6 and left, with instructions to return in seven days to have the stitches removed.carousel

This happened on a Friday. When I tried to go to sleep that night everything spun around and I couldn’t get my bearings. No matter how I tried to position myself, the bed spun round and round, like a merry-go-round. I was afraid to lift my head at all. After an insane night, at 4:00 a.m. I called my good friend who is a nurse and she came over to take my vitals, assure me my blood pressure was all right, and made me promise to go to the doctor on Monday.

On Monday I was still extremely dizzy, so we hailed a taxi and went to the doctor’s office. His first words were “What a terrible job of stitching – you’ll have a big scardoctor there.” I told him I didn’t care about the scar, just how I was feeling. He explained that I had “shaken brain syndrome” from hitting my head so hard on the concrete. He gave me something for the dizziness and pain and sent me home to rest. Friends and well wishers came to be with me and it helped me take my mind off the way I was feeling. My face didn’t look so good, but I knew it would go away.

black eye

If you’d like to know more about symptoms and treatment of concussions, here’s the Mayo Clinic Link.

Here ends part one of my (“Fear of Falling”) post. Stay tuned for the rest of the story in my next blog post.

Have you ever taken a bad spill?  Did it change your life?  I’d like to know!

Books by L.Leander:

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Inzared, Queen of the Elephant Riders

 

 

 

 

 

Inzared, The Fortune Teller Video Trailer

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Inzared, The Fortune Teller (Book Two)

 

 

 

 

 

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You can also find L.Leander here:

L.Leander Website

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This entry was posted in activities, aging, Balance, challenges, Childhood, choices, Christmas, Christmas activities, Concussion, decisions, Doctors, events, Extremes, ferries, Festivals, folly, growing old, help, hurt, impact, life, Mexico, Reality, Rest, Uncategorized, Walking and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Fear of Falling

  1. Mike Staton says:

    I hope you are doing fine now, Linda. Scary times, two concussions in a year. You’ve got nothing over a NFL football player. Several years ago my roommate in North Carolina had a seizure and fell in the kitchen, fracturing the back of her skull. She’s doing better now, but still has dizziness problems.

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    • You’ll see how I’m doing in the next blog, Mike, but everything’s ok. I actually watched a segment on 60 Minutes about the danger to football players during their playing years and beyond, seems like an awfully high price to pay even if the wages are so high. So sorry about your roommate – that must have been scary! I know my own experiences were but at least i didn’t fracture anything. Thanks for the comment!

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  2. Doris says:

    Linda,
    Life does try to give us hints but we don’t always listen. Your journey is a lesson for us and the rest of the story is much anticipated. Take care of yourself, there is more the world looks forward to hearing from you. Doris

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    • Thank you Doris. You hit the nail on the head. Life does give us hints and it’s only by listening to yourself that you can realize something might be wrong. It’s certainly true in my case, but that’s for part two. I’m learning day by day to walk, not run, and to listen to what my body tells me.

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  3. Reblogged this on L.LEANDER BOOKS and commented:
    I’ve written a very personal post on Writing Wranglers and Warriors in a two part series. Here is the first segment – the second to come soon,

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  4. Wranglers says:

    Linda, I prayed hard for you at that time. I hope you have a complete recovery. I know it takes a long time. I am the same way, I’m always going full steam ahead and I too try to protect and help my husband. I so understand where you are coming from. Seems I fall on my hip and back every year. About 3 weeks ago, I feel and re-hurt my back. I’m going to the Pain Center today. They are fitting me with a lead and a shocker. LOL I loved your first book and as soon as I get caught up, I’ll read the next one. Cher’ley

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    • I know, dear friend, how you prayed for me and I am eternally grateful. I am learning not to go full steam ahead. Every three years I have a flareup of my back and end up in the hospital for a week – that happened about 5 weeks ago and still getting over it, but it wasn’t anything I did. I have a lead and shocker too, actually I have three but who’s counting? On Prednisone for 6 days and if that doesn’t work, (which it doesn’t) off I go for another MRI. As I said, every three years. Since I’m petrified of the MRI machine after all these back problems, I have to go under anesthesia to have one. I’m not so sure about this “65” thing. I thought I’d feel like I did in my teens! lol

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  5. sstamm625 says:

    Wow, that sounds very serious. Looking forward to finishing the story with the next installment. I haven’t ever had quite that kind of fall. I did have a bike accident as a kid and had to have stitches in two different places on my forehead and cheekbone.

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    • Thanks for the comment Stephanie. I am actually happy to have had the two concussions because it lead to an underlying problem and I never would have known or begun to feel better. Sounds like those stitches probably hurt, especially on the cheekbone? Part two of “Fear of Falling” will give you “The rest of the story.”

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  6. Gayle Irwin says:

    Linda, I know you’ve had a rough time since these incidents and I pray that every day you feel better and stronger. I’ve not had such experiences, thankfully, not even a broken bone. I’m a whimp when it comes to pain and medical stuff, so I’m thankful for not experiencing such trauma. May you continue to recover each day!

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  7. Thanks for the prayers and good wishes Gayle. I am doing pretty well right now, even with the back flare-up. For the first time in my life I know life can be “normal”, whatever that is! lol

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  8. Nancy Jardine says:

    I haven’t had the kind of tumbles you have, Linda, but I think sometimes people can get so fixated on the obvious swelling of a bump after a fall and they often forget that other body parts can be damaged during the fall as well. Take care.

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    • That’s so true Nancy. Of course, my first inclination is to worry about my back. It didn’t give me any problems at first but I have not had a tough year with it. All is good though, as you’ll see in Part !!. Thanks for the comment. (By the way, I have never had falls either, except for normal childhood stuff). I could do without them! lol

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  9. S. J. Brown says:

    There are endless wonders around us just waiting for us to slow down and notice them.

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    • I love this reply S.J. Slowing down is something I’m still working on. I have always seemed to be in a hurry and it has caused me countless problems. Just last night I had my arms full of things as I came upstairs and I fell! Lucky for me, I landed on the floor and didn’t roll back down the stairs or I would have been hurt more than I was. All I had to do was pick up a bag and put the items in it before I came up, but I didn’t do that, and now I have the bruises to show for being in a hurry. Every day I try to slow down a little more and it’s actually working! I’m enjoying noticing the endless wonders that are around me. Thanks for commenting!

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