Thanks so much everyone for all the well wishes. It means so much! And thanks for hanging in there with me... it has been a crazy time. Crazy!
I know some of you were waiting for the gruesome details of our car accident. It could have been much worse, really. But I'll give you the low-down. Suffice it to say that we had a very full vehicle. We had company in town. Remember my step-mom who had just been in ICU for a month? She was in the front seat. She had come to visit, and we were having a lovely time. It was her last day with us, and we were taking her to see the lake. She's from Tucson where naturally occurring water is a mystical thing. Anyway, we didn't quite make it to the lake that day.
I was in the middle of the backseat with the three kids. I had just unbuckled my seatbelt because Kitty Bill was screaming. I felt Einstein hit the brakes, and I turned my head just in time to see this car SMASH right into us. Next thing I knew I was in the front seat and the car was filling with smoke and the kids were screaming their heads off.
We all got out of the car, and I registered the fact that my head and leg were hurting more than a bit. But Kitty Bill, 14 months old at the time of the accident, had a mouthful of blood. BLOOD. I rememember thinking, OMG! MY BABY'S BLEEDING! Maybe I screamed it a few times. My memory is a bit fuzzy about that. The girls, Sunburst and Moonshine, were screaming, too. Crying and screaming. And of course Kitty Bill was screaming. He bit his tounge pretty hard... though at the time, I had no clue why he was bleeding so much.
I couldn't stand. It was 30-some odd degrees outside and sort of raining/sleeting. But my brain didn't register that. It only told me, SIT DOWN. So I sat in the cold, wet grass rocking a bleeding baby. Completely helpless to calm my girls. Completely incapable, especially when I reached back to touch my pounding head and came away with a handful of my own blood. The back of my head was soaked with blood. It was dripping down my neck, and the paramedics told me my neck was cut. At that point, they could have told me that aliens were dropping out of the sky. The shivering and shock started to set in, and some nice bystander brought me a blanket while we waited to be loaded into the ambulance.
My stepmom took out the glovebox with her knee and shin. Einstein ended up with swollen knees. Sunburst cut her knee. Moonshine and Kitty Bill... let me just say, carseats really are worth every penny. Those thick metal clips that you're supposed to use when you're fastening a carseat to a shoulder harness belt? Those clips actually BENT from the force of the accident. Oddly enough, we were congratulated in the ambulance by a local firefighter for having our carseats properly installed with those clips. It was a weird moment.
And me? Physically, I'm okay. The insurance adjuster surmised that I flew through the car: bent the driver's seat with my body/leg, busted off the rearview mirror with one part of my head, caught my hair (where a clump of it still hangs to this day) on the visor clip, and then proceeded to smash another part of my head into the passenger's side windshield. I've been told that had I weighed more or had we been going a tiny bit faster... or had I not been impeded with bending that driver's seat... maybe I would have gone though the windshield?
But, I didn't. I'm here.
I've had just about every part of my body x-rayed and/or CT-scanned by now. I'm making progress. I've been able to wear a shoe on my left foot for a few days now. I'm finally hobbling along without crutches, though I can't bear any weight on my left heel-- still waiting on the results from that x-ray. My ankle is still a beautiful shade of blue-green. In the ER they originally thought my leg was broken and put me in a knee-to-crotch immobilizer for a few days. They washed and examined my bloody head and offered to staple it closed. They ran some kind of dye and iodine solution through my system and stuck me in a machine to see if I impaled any of my organs when I flew around in the car. Luckily, all I did was break an L-2 transverse process. In layman's terms, that's one of those wings that stick out on the side of my spine in my lower back. Apparently it breaks only when you twist really hard... and four weeks later it hurts when I twist or lift anything heavy or bend wrong or pull or push or sneeze hard. So I'm trying not to do those things.
Emotionally? I think we're all messed up. Einstein and I are both a bit freaked out when we drive. The girls are having trouble sleeping and having behavior problems, and Moonshine seems suddenly obsessed with death. "Because sometimes even loving mothers die, like in Cinderella." They have been playing "Dead Princess," over and over and over. Maybe it's all a coincidence? But I'm thinking that now that I can walk somewhat it's time to check us all into some kind of post-accident therapy.
We were so blessed to have such wonderful help over the last four weeks! People brought us lunch and dinner and Thanksgiving pies. They helped shuttle our kids various places, loaned us crutches, rescued us at the ER with warm tea and vegan treats, and took our girls home, bathed them and put them to bed. Amazing folks! We also had family here helping out. Einstein's parents came for five days, and then my youngest teenage sister flew out from California for two weeks. Since she's homeschooled, she can do that!
With my sister's help we managed to eek out some birthday cheer for Einstein, get the shoes out for St. Nicholas Day, decorate for Advent and Christmas, and do a Santa Lucia breakfast. Plus, she made me laugh so hard I cried. Truly. And of course she helped enormously with the kids- leave it to Kitty Bill to learn how to climb on the dining room table the day after the accident!
And there you have it. The long, full story of why we haven't done any formal homeschooling in the last month. And now, we're moving on into the Christmas hooplah, and then hopefully we'll be back to our regularly scheduled program. Heart, hands, head. Homeschooling and all that.