Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The New Murphy Normal?

I was determined that my next blog entry would be a fun post; a report that would solidify to me (and to you, because I know some of you have your suspicions) that life at the Murphy home can indeed be normal.  But… here I am writing for the sake of sanity once more… processing the seemingly New Normal we entered 7 months ago with the first of (now 4) ER visits.

These are wonderful people,but you never hope to have them rush into your yard – unless of course there is a beloved kitty in the tree that needs to be rescued. We, however, do not have a cat.So when the 5th rescue vehicle silences it’s sirens in front of your house, even little boys may think it scary rather than exciting.  At least initially.
So what happened this time?  

A boy fellhard and f a r.

But, instead of a little boy,  it was a big boy in double digits.  It was Grandpa.  Now I need you to know that Grandpa knows and loves ladders – even though he is 67 years young. He also is experienced in cutting trees down.  That is why he came to help Scott get rid of this Dogwood that had an unwanted lean into the neighbor's yard.  But after an unforeseen tension mishap between ladder, tree and rope, grandpa was catapulted a guesstimated 20 feet down.
I heard a shout (one of those unmistakable something's-very-wrong howls), and a THUD... adrenaline transported me to the site in seconds.  Grandpa was alert, but obviously in significant pain. Scott was kneeling by his side.  The boys, just having witnessed one of their hero’s plummet, were a grey-ish-white.  
I f-f-fumbled with the phone… who knew that the numbers 9 and 1 could be so hard to find on the all too familiar pad?? 
When I had finally managed to communicate the necessary details (in my extra-strong, stress-induced accent) to 911, I irrationally started snapping pictures.  Yes, I hear your thoughts: "She may be the one who needed to be admitted!!"  And since there is a spark of truth to that, I unashamedly declare my crazy point-and-shoot session to have been essential therapy. It is called visual-processing-for-the-almost-but-not-quite-yet-insane.
A very observant fireman, who must have thought my actions on the wrong edge of normal, came up to me and asked if I was OK.  Guess what I did… I started crying of course!  I assured him it was just shock-ock-sniff-ock-k-k.  He was one smart man, for after assessing that I would indeed not faint or fizzle into histerics after all, he looked at the 5 sheet-white ghosts at my side, and with a most winsome and comforting smile offered: “Who wants to explore a firetruck!?”
Those guys rock.  That’s all I can say.

In the meantime, grandpa endured a horrendously painful ride to the hospital, and had the ER personal shaking their heads: “What was a 67y/o doing on a ladder?”  They just did not know how young 67 could be.  It is a boy thing, I think... I assume... I fear.

But grandpa is doing very well given the distance he fell and the body-bounce he endured on impact.  He broke his clavicle and suffers from significant back pain, but has no known internal injuries or other fractures. I am absolutely convinced that he had The Everlasting Arms underneath him even as he fell, since he barely missed the spiky edge of a chain link fence and landed literally inches away from some ominously situated, pointy tree stumps.

So… all of this sounds pretty New Murphy-Normal to me, don’t you think?  But still... I have hope that the next post will start with an upbeat: And now for something completely different! 

Update: Poor grandpa.  While his injuries are not life threatening, "it hurt him hijjus!" After 3 days in the hospital, he is facing 3 more in the same bed, and after that another week in an inpatient rehab facility.   Convincing him that this is the most excellent route to recovery has not been easy...he is strong and independent... and every bit as hard-headed as my side of the family! (And that is not a comforting thought: our children are apparently loaded  with a double dose of formidable genes from both sides of the ocean...)

Another update: Grandpa does have 3 vertebral fractures after all.  It does not change things a whole lot, except that he has an explanation for his pain and is facing a longer recovery period than the few days he initially hoped.


  1. You scare me! Love the fire truck diversion. Know the tribe was enthralled with their latest adventure, but PLEASE - no more for a while.

    1. And THEY scare ME! The Queen needs a break from adventure... and if I get my way, we'll be moving into a padded-wall house soon - something like a jumping castle with no jump.;-)

  2. when my mom starts y'alls stories with "everyone is okay" i brace myself for a cringing tale. great day. i'm so glad didi wasn't there or you would have been hauling her off in the ambulance as well.

    1. I know. I resign. And I think you are right about Didi... but since she was spared witnessing the actual event, she really is handling it better than most of us! We are thankful...

  3. oh my goodness! i am totally with you on the snapping pictures thing, though - that would totally be me! praying for grandpa to be gracious and quick in recovery :)

  4. Mamma mia, thank goodness it didn't end up worse, and it is incredible how much humor you manage to put into this dramatic story . All the best to grandpa !

  5. So sorry to hear about his fall; yikes. Hope he comes to the mend quickly. And what WAS he doing on that ladder at ANY age. Scold.

  6. Poor Grandpa. 67 isn't all that old to be up on a ladder.. my DH is 76 and still gets on ladders. and keeps doing things. It can happen to a much younger man just as easy. It's just MURPHY'S LAW. I hope he is back up on his feet soon. Bet it wont keep him off those ladders either. :)

  7. Wow, just read this, hopefully Grandpa's all better by now and staying off those ladders. This so reminds me of my carpenter boyfriend who still does this for a living in his early 60s. Today he is hiking down a steep canyon to pan for gold while I'm at work and ya know he will be on my mind like ALL DAY!!! I know it can happen to a kid just as easily but I do still worry. I think its great you took pics and not at all strange considering the nerves, I would too,lol.That fireman sounds soooooo cool, what a sweetheart!Deb


Make my day: add to my therapy with your words:-)