I was hiking out in Long Beach, when I got a phone call from my bestie. Most often when I am out photographing birds I turn off my phone, but today for some reason I had just put it on silent. So I answered the ring expecting to hear Mrs. Dancer’s voice, instead I hear a strange girl rushing out that my friend was hurt and during the long pause as I processed that information I heard the screaming in the background.
What I found out from the girl on the phone is that Mrs. Dancer, while at S Factor, was doing an upside-down pole trick and slipped. Thankfully she didn’t hit her head but she did slam down on the base of her spine. I didn’t get much from the girl on the phone, she was upset, I started freaking out; an ambulance was on the way, she could move her toes (thank God), but she was in a TON of pain. I made the random girl who had called me from Mrs. Dancers phone to promise to call me back when she knew what hospital they were going too.
And then I ran for the car.
Driving like an insane maniac, illegally in the carpool lane (sorry it was an emergency), I somehow made it to the hospital only 10 minutes after they admitted Mrs. Dancer. Then the nazi nurse behind the bullet proof glass wouldn’t let me into her room.
nazi nurse: “Are you family.”
me: “Well not really but sort of. I am her in case of an emergency person.”
nazi nurse: “I am sorry miss but you have to wait.”
me: “I cannot wait, I need to get in there right now.”
nazi nurse: gives me evil death stare “The doctor is in with her now, once he is finished you can go in.”
me: “Could you at least let her know I am here... and let me know if she is doing ok... and let me know the second I can go in to see her.”
Then I sat and waited. Or maybe I should say that I sat in a chair I pulled up as close as I could get to being directly in the Nazi Nurses field of vision so I could use my Jedi mind powers of persuasion so she would let me see my friend, and also you know as a reminder just so there was no way she could forget about me even for a second. Finally after what seemed like forever, but in actuality was only 10 minutes, I was shown into her room. I almost cried but she was ok. Seems that the doctor, after a visual exam, didn’t think anything was broken, but Mrs. Dancer was in a ton of pain.
DON’T WORRY I WAITED UNTIL SHE GOT HER PAIN MEDS BEFORE I STARTED TAKING PHOTOS - SEE THE SMILE
Mrs. Dancer is what I would call a Semi-pro break-a-holic. She has broken her ankles, her knees; it seems she always has some minor athletic injury or another. She is after all more than slightly accident prone however this was her first BIG scare. A spine injury is moving into the Pro break-a-holic category. After I made sure she was ok I yelled at her.
SHE LOVES ME TAKING PHOTOS OF HER
They gave her some pain medication and some muscle relaxers but she was still in a ton of pain. After getting x-rays to make sure that no bones were broken, and after getting another round of stronger pain medication, she was released. Her official injury, a sever spine contusion. She was told to rest, take her pain meds and the hope would be that she would be on the mend in a week or two.
Only then did I go and call her husband and her sister. Neither of which answered their phones despite numerous calls. I get that they were both at work BUT COMEON PEOPLE – this is a frigging emergency. Note to self I need to start paying more attention to my phone. Despite leaving numerous messages and calling dozens of times it took over an hour to reach the husband... and don’t even get me started on the sister’s call back 3 hours later! In this day and age of instantaneous ability to connect to anyone in the world you would think it would be a little easier to let people know about an emergency.
Only after I was sure everything was going to be ok did I finally let myself take a bunch of photos. Mrs. Dancer wasn’t too happy, but she was immobile it wasn’t like she could do much to stop me, and anyways she knows me... she loves me... she forgives me.
POOR MRS. DANCER DONE BROKE HER BACK – IT MAKES US VERY VERY SAD
Once we got released we had to deal with some chaos. Mrs. Dancer, having left the dance studio in such a hurry, didn’t have her shoes so she got some styling hospital socks. And then there was the problem with her car, which is a stick shift, which I do not know how to drive. It had to be moved, preferably before it got towed, but I would need to wait for her sister to get off work to deal with that. With Mrs. Dancer’s pain managed with Vicodin we left the hospital for her house. We fought traffic but I was happy we got her to the apartment without too much trouble. But as we stood at the door and she reached for her keys she remembered... here comes the trouble. Since the medicine made her a space cadet she completely forgot that her apartment keys were in her car, back by the hospital, in her now illegally parked car at the dance studio. SIGH.
We had to turn back, get her apartment keys out of her car, move her car to a non-tow place, drop off her prescription so it could get filled and then we got to her house two hours later both starving, both exhausted. We both decided to screw our diets and we ordered pizza.
Pizza came, the sister called and was on her way, the husband came home and we all ate. At this point one would assume that Mr. Dancer would step in and take care of picking up the prescription and deal with her car still at the studio. But I forgot to mention that Mr. Dancer just had knee surgery last week. AKA the man can barely walk and is still not cleared for driving; needless to say I didnt get home that night until very late.
The moral of the story is to BE CAREFUL...
and if you are not going to be careful then at least make sure you partner isn’t injured as well...
and if you are not going to be careful and you have a partner that is injured then at least make sure you have a very best friend who loves you very much and answers her phone in an emergency.
Love you Mrs. Dancer, get better soon.