Saturday, 9 May 2009

Lawnmower man

Today has been interesting.

Started off well, with sunshine, a nice cup of tea and free-range boiled eggs for breakfast.

We read the papers, chatted about our respective plans for the morning, discussed the possibility of going to the cinema at some point. I needed to pop into town* while Mr WithaY decided to mow the lawn with our funky new lawnmower.

He decided to go down to Father-in-Law WithaY's place and mow his lawns after he finished ours, so I as I headed off to the shops, I waved goodbye with a happy smile on my face.

I pottered around town, ran a few errands, dropped off the dry cleaning, all that sort of stuff, then headed home to start getting lunch sorted. I had a loaf of bread almost ready in the bread machine, and was going to do some lovely soup to go with it when Mr WithaY got home.

The phone rang.

Me: Hello?

Mr WithaY: (sounding unlike his usual cheery self) Hello. It's me.

Me: Oh hello! You ok?

Mr W: Yes. And no. I've had a bit of an accident.

Me: (Thinking he's backed his Landrover into a tree or something, and needs me to come and tow him home) Oh dear. Where are you?

Mr W: In an ambulance. Going to ....(conferring with paramedics in background) Salisbury Accident and Emergency.

Me: Oh fuck. What have you done??

Mr W: I've cut the ends of some of my fingers off.

Me: FUCK. How??

Mr W: (long pause) ...It was really stupid... (even longer pause)

Me: I'll meet you at the hospital. *click*

I drove to Salisbury, trying not to think about what might have happened. I know from long experience that Mr WithaY tends to underplay the seriousness of injuries to himself, so "the ends of some of my fingers" could mean an arm, or both, might be hanging off.

I finally found him in A&E, liberally blood-splattered and hopped up on morphine, a small plastic container in a bag of ice on the table next to him. The paramedics had searched the scene of the accident and found the end of his finger, and brought it to the hospital.

CSI Dorset.

So what happened?

You may well ask.

He had apparently, for reasons even he can't explain, stuck his hand under the lawnmower to clear some stuck grass while it was still running.

Yes. He poked his fingers into a razor sharp whirling blade.

As a result, he has lost the top joint of his ring finger and a big chunk of the top of his middle finger. They kept the bit that got lopped off to use for grafts, but apparently that wasn't needed in the end. No possibility of micro-surgerying it back on, unfortunately.

The plastic surgery team were fantastic, very reassuring and friendly. The A&E staff were brilliant too. One of them had to draw a big arrow in felt-tip pen on the back of Mr WithaY's wounded hand "in case they try and operate on the wrong one."

I left him as they were about to take him off for X-rays, drove home, packed him an overnight bag, and called our fantastic neighbours. Mr WithaY had been fretting that his Landrover was still sitting at Father-in-Law WithaY's house, so our neighbour very kindly came with me down to Dorset, finished mowing the lawn** while I picked up post and so on, then he drove the Landrover home to the WithaY house while I headed back to Salisbury hospital.

I found Mr WithaY in a ward (in E Bay...the medic had said "don't worry, we'll put a reserve on him" which made us laugh) eating his supper, with his hand all neatly bandaged up. They'd done the X-ray, whisked him off to theatre***, patched and tidied his hand up and sent him up to the ward in the three hours since I left him.

We chatted a bit. The Sister came over and I asked her if they were keeping him in overnight, as there had been some discussion about sending him home, but Mr WithaY and I were both unhappy with that suggestion.

The Sister agreed that he would be best to stay in hospital overnight, and that I should call in the morning and hopefully come and fetch him home then.

So. That's the plan.

I should be in bed now but am still too stressed and adrenaline-filled to sleep. Maybe I'll have a bath.

I really, really wish this hadn't happened.


**with the Lawnmower of DOOM

***for surgery, not musical comedy


Mrs Jones said...

Hah! Lawnmowers will do that. Clearing the grass from underneath was what I was about to do when my particular Lawnmower Of Doom tried to kill me, although with electrickery instead of whirling razor blades - I blogged about it... Oh dear, poor Mr WithaY. Give him our fondest.

badgerdaddy said...

Fucking hell. You two are so rock and roll!

livesbythewoods said...

Mrs J, I read your account a while back. Electrocution sounded far scarier than involuntary amputation. He's doing alright, though, thank you for the kind thoughts.

Badgerdaddy, I know. A bizarre gardening accident!

justme said...

Oh NO!! How awful! So sorry. Hope he is recovering ok and you a bit less

Z said...

Oh blimey, poor Mr W. Is he absolutely not an East Angularian? That is what usually happens around here. Most of the local farmers and landowners are lacking a bit of their extremities, and a couple of them are in wheelchairs.

monk said...

Oh you poor things.

But you can dine out on it for months.

livesbythewoods said...

Justme, thank you. I am sure he'll be fine eventually.

Z, nope, a Dorset man. But yes, it could have been very much worse indeed.

Monk, hello! We are counting on it!

Spencer Hill said...

In twenty years the story of that injury will have developed into a brutal knife fight with a twenty foot ancestor of our native species of deer, returned to Earth to champion the cause of their descendants. Mr W represented our planet with heroism and defended the continued consumption of venison for another 500 years. It sounds much better than what actually happened :( Give him our regards for a speedy recovery.

livesbythewoods said...

Spence, we are drafting a suitable saga about it as we speak.