Thursday, March 29, 2007

life or death

I posted this at MySpace, but it can't hurt to post here too. I will add as things change...

I am now a certified hero, at least that's what everybody from neighbors to coworkers to the news to hospital workers are saying. I guess that's true, considering what could have happened.

For now, these are the facts: On Sunday night, two men followed my neighbor as she drove in off the alley. My friend Phil and I were on the porch, watching her park her car. When the men started demanding her bag and pulled a gun, I started yelling at them to leave her alone. The man holding the gun turned and fired two shots. One hit the side of the house and one went through a two-by-four and hit me. The bullet penetrated my shoulder, narrowly missing my arteries, throat, esophagus and lungs. It stopped in the muscles under my clavicle and will remain there until the doctors feel it is extractable. Anna did not wake up, though her bedroom is a matter of feet away. She didn't even wake up as the firemen arrived from the fire station around the corner, and the paramedics and police began swarming the entry to our house. I was taken to the trauma unit under full lights and sirens because the EMTs feared where the bullet might travel and whether the shock my body had gone into would cause cardiac arrest. After I was stabilized and the wound was determined not to be life-threatening, I was admitted to the hospital.

For the next day and a half, more tests were done and X-Rays and CT scans taken. On Tuesday, I was released, and for the last two days, Anna and I have laid low with another family to avoid the media attention and recoup a bit. I also wanted to wait until at least one of the suspects was in police custody--news I received this morning. We are back home now, and I am confronting major questions about what we do next--whether we stay in this house any longer--and how much I need to rely on the kindness of friends and family to manage the big and little tasks of life--you never realize how tiring things like dishes and laundry can be until small repetitive tasks cause pain.

As for the hero question, I will leave it alone for now. My neighbor Lindee is alive and safe. I am injured but extraordinarily lucky for what could have happened. My daughter remains the light of my life. One foot in front of the other...