Worst Days in Our Lives
Dennis' Epic Bad Day
We all have bad days, some are epic bad. Some of them make you want to give up. TTombs wrote a hub about bad days. I started to write an epic sized comment and then thought, 'No, I will write a hub'. So I am going to tell you all about some epic bad days.
Dennis was in Vietnam, in Special Forces. He has told me about the day that he got three Purple Hearts in one day. Let's see if I can keep them straight. The first one, he was out on patrol and they found the bad guys. They were shooting back and forth, when a rocket came in and exploded. The shrapnel from it flew all over and a piece hit him in the face. His nose was hanging by a scrap of skin. Sorry about the visual on that one. This was the first.
He fought on because during the heat of battle, you don't notice things like that. They finally beat the bad guys back and the helicopter came in to withdraw them. They took the wounded first and Dennis was in this group. They were raising him up to the helicopter in a basket and a sniper shot him in the buttocks. Ouch, a Forrest Gump wound. Number two for the Purple Hearts for the day.
The helicopter takes off after he is aboard and goes about a mile and a mortar was shot at them. This made the helicopter crash. When it crashed, his ankle was broken. The magic three in one day. He laughs about it now, but he always says that was not just a bad day, it was a really bad day; Murphy's Law hit. If anything could go wrong, it did.
Funny things continue to happen because of that day. They shipped him to Germany to repair his wounds and fix his nose. They put a Kevlar piece in it to replace the cartilage. Then they patched his nose together. Works fine unless it is really cold out. When it gets really cold, the piece of Kevlar gets cold and conveys the chill to his bones. It will give him a serious migraine.
The opposite is true when it is really hot out. We lived in extreme southern California for awhile. It got to the 120's sometimes. This tended to do to the Kevlar, what heat does to other plastics, it softened. If he rubbed his nose for some reason while it was soft, it would bend into a different shape. Fun, right.
We were moving to Arizona where there were more jobs at the time. As we were driving out of the area, his nose itched and he unconsciously rubbed his nose. Neither of us noticed until we got to the mountains, which were cooler. His nose had a decided tilt to one side. He looked as if he had broken his nose and it had healed badly.
He tried to straighten his nose several times over the next few years but it was never quite hot enough. Three years later, we went to visit some friends back in So. CA, and as we were leaving, I told him to straighten his nose, and then not to touch it again. He did manage to get to the mountains without touching it.
My Worst Day
I have had a few bad days also. Not to equal Dennis' but one nearly so. I was pregnant and things were not going right. I had already had two children and I knew things were different. I had been to my OB and when I started cramping at work, I went downstairs to the ER. Handy working in a hospital. They called my OB and she wanted me to come in right then. This was not one of her hospitals. Her hospital was on the other side of Cincinnati.
A twenty mile drive but it was all Interstate Highways. Of course, by the time I got out of the ER, it was late and I had an hour to get over there. They told me they would wait. It was also rush hour and the traffic in Cincinnati is really bad during rush hour. Bumper to bumper, all lanes full, but they do move quickly.
I got in my car, a '78 Impala station wagon, and headed towards the River; where her office was. The traffic eased up in a few stretches and I went a little faster in those areas. I was doing 70, with cars on both sides of me, in front of me and behind me, when Murphy's Law hit. The front of the muffler came off. It swung around with the front of it heading back towards the rear of the car. It reached the gas tank and I hit a bump, which caused it to jab a hole in the gas tank. It then moved sideways and jammed between the wheel and the gas tank.
This had the immediate effect of causing the wheel to lock up and not turn. I think if I had not been driving such a big, heavy car, It probably would have flipped. As it was, it just skipped down the Interstate with the rear passenger wheel locked in place. It was also pouring my half a tank of gas through the hole that the muffler had poked in the gas tank. The muffler was dragging on the ground also. That produced a large fountain of sparks from the rear of the car. I could see the sparks and feel the skipping but didn't know about the gas tank yet. I could also hear the metal muffler dragging on the ground and had heard the sound before. I gripped the steering wheel, desperately trying to find a way to move over to the side of the road.
With my foot off the gas, the car slowed from 70 to 45 much faster than normal, probably because of the locked wheel. The other cars went around me and freed up the right lane, which I zoomed through in record time. Getting to the side of the road, I got out to see what the h3ll had happened. I looked under the car and saw the muffler lodged against the wheel. I also could see the gas draining out of the tank and I am sure I turned white at that point, remembering the sparks.
It was January in Cincinnati, and like most days of that month, the temperature was below zero. I went back to the front door of the car to get a blanket out of the car. I was wearing a skirt that day and my legs were frozen, above my boots.My coat was thick enough, just not long enough. That is when I discovered that somehow, I had locked the door as I got out. Since I locked the car at work, the rest of the doors were locked also. I couldn't get my blanket. I just went over to the guard rail, sat on it, and started crying.
This was back in 1996, when cell phones were still very expensive and people did not have them commonly. I was one of those who did not have one. It would have been locked into the car anyway.
Someone finally pulled over to ask if I needed help and let me use their cell phone to call my husband. He had extra keys to the car. He called my Dr. and told her that I would not be able to make it that night and why. I would be in the next day. He grabbed the neighbor, who was a mechanic and headed my way. He was forty-five minutes away. The gentleman who let me use his phone had a meeting he had to be at so he had to go. I was very grateful that he stopped and let me use his phone.
A police officer came by about twenty minutes later, and let me sit in his car while I waited. I must have been blue by the time the officer got there. I have never enjoyed a car heater so much.
When my husband arrived, the neighbor got the muffler unstuck with a crowbar and my husband got the door unlocked. They slapped a temporary patch on the gas tank, poured gas into the car from the gas can they brought with them and the neighbor drove it to the next turn around spot to get more gas. We followed him in case of more problems and then he drove it home. They decided I did not need to be driving any more that day.
I made it to my Doctor's office bright and early the next morning, where they did an ultrasound. They discovered that I was having a miscarriage and the baby just did not have that magic spark of life. The Doctors at the ER already knew that when they called them the day before. They put me into the hospital to finish the miscarriage process and check for damage.
This is when they told me that one out of three pregnancies ended up miscarrying. Most women didn't even realize that they were having one. If they happen in the first two months, they just figure that their period was late for some reason. I made it to the middle of my third month and there are a few more problems then. Some just don't catch hold well, some are mis-formed and some just don't get the spark of life. Our bodies are amazing and they work for the best, in these cases. They will reject a lot of the ones that aren't right in some way.
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