Last evening as I was winding down from the chores and watching the news, I heard what I thought was a large clap of thunder. I put the television on mute and listened intently for a few minutes. I got up and looked out the front only to see that the clouds that had appeared to be threatening earlier were doing their usual dusk disappearing act. I walked to the back to see my husband sprawled on the deck still in the sitting position of with his favorite lawn chair still underneath him - only sideways. This is a cast iron chair and turned out to have been the source of the noise. He had not yet gotten up for two reasons: First, the dogs were trying to lick him and climb onto him and second, it really hurt and he's getting older. This brought back many memories for me.
Roll that tape:
It was 1990. We bought our first house or I should say he bought our first house for me. It was a little doll house that I once remarked made me feel like I was staying in a hotel - yes, America - I did not get out much back then! We moved into this house over the weekend and finally got all our guests and housewarmers out of the way. We went outside to walk around and look at our new homestead and he wisked me off my feet in a romantic gesture and spun me around so I could get a complete view of our new estate. Just as he was describing to me his intense love and adoration, he stepped into a hole. I heard the crunch as we were going down. I heard his breath leave as I landed on top of him. Then....I heard the screams. "OWwww owwww owwww - is the bone sticking out! It hurts so bad, call an ambulance." The neighbors began coming out and looking and I was trying desperately to first look at the wound and second shut him up. I did note to him that there was no protruding bone and began taking his shoe off. This was a mistake as his foot instantly blew up three times the normal size as soon as I got it off. The romance vanished and I ran for the car keys. The evening ended with the determination that there was ligament damage, a need for crutches for at least six weeks and plenty of pain killers. If you can't have romance, at least you can have pain killers!
In 1991 we still lived on our estate. We enjoyed our home and our promise of a future together. He had learned what my weaknesses were by this time and learned how to tease without completely blowing the chances for future romance. One evening as I was standing in the kitchen cooking something he apparently was not in love with, he made a sarcastic remark but quickly turned it into a joke as he saw the expression on my face. In return, I grabbed a glass of water and headed toward him. He took off running and we both cleared the couch and coffee table on our way out the front door. We were younger then and were laughing by the time we made it to the porch. Just as he began to clear the railing on the porch, I released the water. It hit him the same time his foot hung on the inside of the railing and jerked him back and down onto the porch outside wall - splat! The injuries were not life threatening but there was the need for crutches again for a while as he hurt the weak ankle. The pants however -split seam to seam did not recover. It was difficult changing his clothes before heading to the emergency room and I still chuckle at the sound of the ripping pants before the actual injury occurred. Fortunately, we both laugh about this.
We did very well until 1994 when he decided to play volleyball with some younger people. Another trip to the emergency room but fortunately, we still had the crutches.
In 1997, he jumped off the back of a truck and landed wrong - again on the same ankle. This time I got the call at work and missed the actually hysteria that always follows an injury with him. Same ole crutches - this time a cast.
In 1999, we stopped along a country road for him to retrieve a kitten we saw in the ditch but he didn't realize the ditch dropped off the road sharply. When he stepped out of the car, he disappeared into a four foot ravine - he simply vanished short of hanging on to the door handle screaming "ROOOBBBIIIIIII!" He fell directly into a patch of poison ivy and never did get that kitten. No crutches this time but another visit to the emergency room when his severe allergy to poison ivy surfaced and he had to get some shots.
I believe there were several more injuries but they don't stand out until this year. He built me a porch swing. As I was coming down the driveway one evening, I noticed him standing beside the porch, the swing askew with a broken chain. Unfortunately, what I had missed was the actually BREAKING of that chain and him tumbling with the end of the swing some three feet to the ground as he was on the back swing. The dogs hadn't missed it. They were attempting to make him feel better by licking and climbing all over him. I wonder if that one sounded like thunder.
Time passes in our lives, we get older, we get more easily injured. The glorious thing about Dave is he can still laugh when he does something that is silly or somewhat questionable and the worse case happens. I love that about him because I am a mean person and I always laugh when I see him tumble. One day I will write about all the broken corners, countertops, door facings and all the bruises where I have never been able to navigate my way around. He gets his share of chuckles from that.
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