This past Thursday I succumbed to the summer cold germs floating around my workplace and spent most of the day lying on the couch, praying for more comfortable kleenex and considering the merits of snorting salsa as a way to clear out my sinuses.
I don't always come up with great ideas when I'm sick.
At 6 pm, I suddenly recalled that it was, indeed, Thursday and I was due to meet my friends at Applebees in an hour to send off one of our own who was moving to Georgia over the weekend.
I couldn't not go. You don't miss the going-away send-off for one of your girlfriends unless you are dead or something very close.
So, I hauled myself off the couch, bypassed the salsa in favor of the maximum doseage of decongestant and four Ibuprofens. Those of you who recall my inability to tolerate hard liquor will not be surprised that this drug cocktail made me slightly loopy.
Okay, more than slightly but hey, I was off the couch. That counts for something.
My hubby and the kids were out and about so I changed my clothes, slapped some makeup on my face, and left the house.
So far, so good.
Disaster struck when I rounded the front of my van and headed for the driver's door.
I park on the far side of the driveway so to get to the door, I have to step off of my driveway and onto the grass. No big deal. I can assure you that I have performed that simple piece of coordinated activity any number of times with excellent results.
Of course, I've never done it while flying high on decongestant and ibuprofen and that, it turns out, makes all the difference.
I stepped off the driveway and the grass simply wasn't there.
I don't know where it went. I didn't have time to thoroughly consider the oddity of this occurance as I was abruptly flying toward the ground.
My feet couldn't find the ground. My knee had no such dilemma.
I slammed my left knee into the ONE hard object around...an aggragate stepping stone.
Unfortunately for me, the lawn on that side of the house slopes downward toward the street. Gravity being what it is, I became living proof of whatever law in physics which states that once a woman, high on decongestant and ibuprofen, gathers enough momentum, she will not stop her forward plunge until she has well and truly humiliated herself.
I flipped off the stone face-first, did a complete roll in the air, and slammed into the ground on my back.
Now I was a woman, high on decongestant and ibuprofen, with a possibly broken knee, no breath in my body, and no end in sight to my forward momentum.
I kept rolling.
My purse went flying, including my cell phone.
I ingested dry grass.
I wanted to use some colorful vocabulary but I lacked the air to do so.
When I finally came to rest, sprawled spread-eagle on my back, the only part of my body I hadn't hit was my head and, as I'm sure my regular readers now know, that was a shame because my head is the hardest part of me to hurt.
My side yard not only slopes downward toward the street, it is easily viewed from the front yards/windows of three out of four neighbors' homes on my cul-de-sac. As I lay there trying to get my breath back, trying to figure out if my knee was broken, and trying to spit out stray grass (not easy to do when you can't really breathe, incidentally), I expected at any second to see a concerned neighbor looming over me.
This was a valid assumption on my part as a) it was still daylight and b) no one on this block has forgotten the poorly installed privacy glass on our master bathroom window and all the, ummm, interesting things unknowingly put on display there over the years (check the archives if you missed that one) so it stands to reason that my neighbors would frequently glance at our home in search of more entertainment.
No one came.
I could have died for all the help I got. Why live in the suburbs if you don't have nosy neighbors waiting to catch your worst moments on film and turn them into $10,000 on AFV?
Eventually, I was able to breathe, able to ascertain that my knee was simply badly bruised, able to stand up, and able to scour the yard for all the items that flew out of my purse when it hit the grass.
Because I didn't break anything and I didn't die, I'm rather grateful none of my neighbors withnessed my graceless stop, drop, and roll routine. I sort of bobbled the landing, after all.
It is a bit humbling to be one of the youngest members of the "Help, I've Fallen And I Can't Get Up" club, though.