It's me. Danielle. I am back for the second part of my blog update. As always, Cindy may insert some pictures of me in the blog post to break up the monotony of a bunch of words.
You may recall in Part 1, I told you about breaking my leg twice in the same year when I was 9 years old. That sucked. For four years, I was break free. Then on one Saturday in October, I fell from a tree house and broke my arm. That's the topic of this blog.
I had a tough child hood. I never met my father and my mother was a junkie. I was raised by my grandma and my mom's sister - Aunt Shelia. When I was 13, I was living with Aunt Shelia. She had two kids - Amanda and Peter. They were my cousins.
Amanda was two years older than me. Peter was three years younger. We all lived at Aunt Shelia's in a small house in Spartanburg, SC. If Aunt Shelia had a husband, I never met him.
I also never knew who built the tree house in the large oak tree in Aunt Shelia's back yard. It was 20 feet above ground and probably older than Aunt Shelia. That was Amanda and my hangout. No boys allowed. We would climb the knotted rope that led to the tree house and hide from the shitty domestic lives we both led. The rickety place was outfitted with a portable radio, books, dirty magazines featuring both sexes naked, and several blankets that could serve as a make shift mattress.
Amanda and I were and are bisexual. Amanda, at the age of 15, was not a virgin. She had had sex with Billy Brennan a year earlier. But she preferred the company of women - particularly one named cousin Danielle. We would spend hours on those blankets kissing and exploring each other's bodies.
It may seem weird to some of you, but in rural South Carolina exploratory sex as a young teen is not unusual. Many girls start having babies at the age of 14 or 15. Aunt Shelia was only 14 years older than cousin Amanda and, to this day, could pass as my younger sister.
So, to the crux of story. Amanda and I were in the tree house on this fateful Saturday morning. Fortunately, we still had our clothes on but were quite active on the blankets. Without warning, the tree house collapsed. Amanda and I fell 20 feet to the ground. I landed on my extended right arm - breaking the ulna and radius completely in half at mid shaft. The pain was unworldly. The arm was bent at a 45 degree angle and I was unable to stand for several minutes.
Amanda landed on the side of her left foot. Her ankle dislocated and her tibia and fibula broke an inch or so above the ankle. She was in obvious agony. She screamed and screamed. Fortunately, Aunt Shelia was home and came running to our aid.
When you are poor in rural South Carolina, you don't call an ambulance for a broken bone or two. Aunt Shelia backed her car into the backyard and somehow got Amanda and I loaded into the backseat. It was the longest car ride of my life although it only lasted 20 minutes. My arm was grotesquely deformed and I almost threw up every time we hit a bump in the road. Amanda's foot rested in my lap. Her sneaker was still on but the sole of her foot was pointing toward the sky. I could see a huge lump on the side of her ankle which I assumed was one of her broken bones. She moaned constantly and kept her eyes closed.
Once we arrived at Spartanburg Memorial Hospital, we were taken into separate treatment rooms. My arm was examined and X-rayed and placed in an orange splint. Aunt Shelia was told that we were fortunate that an Orthopedic Surgeon was on hand when we arrived.
Amanda's ankle injury was apparently deemed more serious than my disfigured arm. She was treated first. Her screams were loud when they set her ankle. In spite of my previous broken leg experiences, I was terrified about what it was going to take to straighten my arm.
Thirty minutes after Amanda stopped screaming, the orthopedic surgeon came into my examining room. He was built like a pro wrestler. Huge hands and arms. At least 6' 4". He was pleasant enough but as he talked to me about my treatment I could see him glancing at my disfigured arm. I could tell he couldn't wait to straighten the damned thing.
But in medical school they must teach you some diplomacy skills.
"Was this my first broken bone?" He asked. I pointed to the massive scar on my shin and the traction pin scars above my knee and explained I was a veteran bone breaker.
"Would I like a pain killer?" He asked displaying what looked to me like a 27" needle that no human being could safely endure. I declined.
"Do I need a blanket? Am I too cold or too hot?" I told him the temperature was not my problem. I raised my mangled arm and asked him to set it as soon as possible.
He complied. Four nurses magically materialized to hold me down. The doctor placed a knee on my upper arm which rested on the examining table. With two hand, he yanked my hand upward.
Amanda later said she had never heard screams so loud. To my credit I didn't scream too long. Maybe 30 seconds or so. We emerged into the lobby 45 minutes later. Amanda was in a splint from toe to thigh and on crutches. I was in a full arm splint and in a sling. Aunt Shelia drove us home.
We had a follow-up visit with Orthopedic Surgeon one week later. Amanda and I had x-rays and were then placed on adjoining treatment tables in the cast room. After a great deal of discussion between the surgeon and Aunt Shelia, Amanda was placed on a full leg blue cast. I was placed in a full arm pink cast. I later learned that the surgeon had strongly recommended surgery for both Amanda and I. However, when you living a double wide in rural South Carolina and are food stamp eligible, surgery is not a real options.
I was in the full arm cast for nine weeks. It was changed once. I had no idea life in a full arm cast would be so difficult. Brushing my hair was impossible. Putting on deodorant was a one armpit task. And putting on a bra took incredible ingenuity.
My arm healed fine. Amanda's ankle is still a problem in her early 30's.
In high school - and in the two years I went to college - Amanda and I continued to explore our bisexuality. We slept together once a month and had a secret box of sex toys she kept hidden under a loose floor board in her bedroom. Our collection included ropes, handcuffs, nipple clamps, vibrators, and gags.
Today, we are each the unmarried mother of three kids. Although we live 30 miles from each other, we typically only see each other on important holidays.