Slammin Lammon's Body Gets Slammed
You would think that since I’m a ballet dancer I would be the picture of grace and coordination. That is NOT the case my friends. You are currently reading the blog of one of the most injury prone, klutziest people you will ever meet. My first ballet teacher once told me that the klutzier a dancer is outside the studio, the more graceful they are in. This being said after I accidentally flung my knife into her lap.
I don’t believe this is true for me, I am klutzy EVERYWHERE.
I even came into this world in the most hap hazard way.
There was a huge storm that hit the night I was born, and there were many woman at the hospital either in labor, or thinking they were in labor and just shrieking. My mother was very calm and collected about the whole giving birth sitch, even though I was her first and only, so she didn’t get much attention in the waiting room. They didn’t even believe her water had broken. Finally, a more experienced nurse came by to look at my mom and was like “oh boy, this baby is coming, we need to get her to a delivery room now!” Of course, I was impatient (that still has not changed) and let’s just say the train was too big for the tunnel. They gave my mom lots of drugs to try to get her body to progress as fast as the impatient little watermelon was progessing, so she was in a great state of happy, natural childbirth.
The doctors then decided that it was a good idea to tell my mom to push as hard as she could.
And she did. She wanted this over with.
For most normal pregnant women at the hospital, telling a woman to push as hard as she could would have been a safe bet, several hard pushes would have finally resulted in a nice gradual childbirth.
But this was my mother, a major in the Marine Corps, who ran when she was pregnant with me for 8 months. She only stopped because the jiggling was a little rough on her. I also ended up coming out with developed quad muscles from bouncing around in her.
Back to the birth of a genius.
My father was in the middle of warning the doctor not to tell my mother to push as hard as she could, when the little bullet train shot through the tunnel. Actually, it was more like a t-shirt being shot out of a t-shirt gun. I went through two doctors hands before the third caught me, with my little umbilical cord trailing through their outstretched hands.
If it’s going to happen, it’ll happen to me.
In 8th grade I was participating in Track and Field at my middle school. We were running drills indoors because, well, ALASKA. You try running on the OUTDOOR track with melting snow, sludge and ice. So I was doing different running drills, INDOORS, on DRY GROUND, in RUNNING SHOES, with the rest of the team. We were split into small teams of 5 or 6 and trying to be the fastest team.
Obviously, why would you want to be the slowest?
It was my turn to run and I had to run down and back, backwards.
My feet were blazin’, I was a speed demon blasting away my competition. I excel at the abnormal way to do things.
As I neared the finish point, I mistakenly glanced over to my competition.
I went DOWN.
I landed backwards on the tops of my hands, with my wrists bent in and my fingers facing me.
I managed to throw myself into a crumpled heap past the line, and the tears started to flow. Someone came up to me to ask what I’d hurt, and for some reason I blurted out, “MY ANKLES!” I tried again a second time, and this time was able to correctly tell them my wrists.
Boy, was that painful.
I had fractured my right wrist, (of course I have to be a leftie, no getting out of school work) and I sprained my left one. The best part was that I had a baton meet that weekend. So of course, I couldn’t twirl, just sit by pitifully in a cast and an arm brace.
The next story is one of a dumb and desperate dancer, merely trying to heal her throbbing blistered feet. This was my freshman year in high school and I’d been dancing for about two years. I also hadn’t gotten very serious about dancing and was pursuing other interests. I was one of three narrators in our high school’s Cinderella, and had come home from our Friday show and was getting ready for bed. Somehow, the needle I had been using to drain my blister with the day before had fallen off my bathroom counter and into my fuzzy bathroom rug. When I walked into my bathroom, I felt a little prick as my foot brushed over the rug, then heard a snap as I stepped down.
Wot in tarnation?
I looked at my foot and didn’t see anything. There was a small little dot where I felt the prick, but I din’t see anything or really feel anything. I combed through my rug and discovered half of a needle.
I kept searching but couldn’t find the other half.
By now, the pain had slowly started to creep in. I came hopping out of the bathroom freaking out that I had stepped on a needle and it had broken off inside my foot. My parents didn’t believe me at first, but finally I think it started to swell or something, and they realized that I was telling the truth. My dad tried to dig around and try to find the end of the needle to pull it out, and then he tried a magnet. Nothing worked. It was time to head to the ER.
The whole car ride there my mom was being a classic mom. You know, where they love you so much that they get insanely pissed when you do something stupid because they know you're better than that. That was my mom. While Dad drove, Mumsy proceeded to tell me how dumb I was, and that she couldn’t believe I did that, and that every time we went over a bump and it hurt me, I deserved it.
We got to the ER and they brought me back to look at me. They tried numbing it to pull it through the bottom or push it through the top, and everything was too painful for me to handle. So they called a surgeon.
At 1am, do you know what a surgeon on call does? They ask if it’s life threatening, and when it’s not, they tell you they’ll see you the next day.
On the way home, my mother felt a lot worse for me, I think she actually felt sorry!
The next day I went in to have the needle surgically removed, I think I was the OR’s entertainment for the day.
Unfortunately, because of the medication, I was not able to go up onstage that night to recite my lines, especially after having vomited outside in the alley at my school. But luckily, I have a high enough pain tolerance, that by Wednesday, I was putting on my pointe shoes for my high school dance program’s rehearsals for our show that weekend!
My sophomore year of high school, I came back on the first day sporting a glorious new head wound.
During the summers, I would intern and later teach at the CLC YMCA Sailing Camp in Round Pond, Maine. That summer, we had acquired a new type of sailboat, the 420.
HAHAHAHA YOU’RE SOOOOOOO FUNNY.
Since each camp session was only a week long, on Friday’s we’d sail out of the harbor and over to a nearby island. The kids could play on the beach and in the water, and the instructors would get a nice relaxing time to lay on in the sun and not worry about capsizing boats. It was a nice finale to a camp session.
My two friends, Teiga and Steven, were also interns, and had gotten permission to take one of the new 420s out and sail around while everyone else was on the beach. It was a very, very windy, story day, but we were experienced and knew how to handle it.
We were just young, and dumb.
We were messing around on the boat, I think Teiga and I hung off the back to pee while Steven drove it by himself. A hard task, considering he had to control the tiller, mainsheet and jib sail. Since we were heeling a lot and the waves were splashing over the side of the boat, the gunnels were very slippery. We were heading in a down wind run position with the wind at our backs, when Steven slipped over the side. This caused the weight in the boat to shift and the wind caught the sail from a different direction and switched it to the opposite side of the boat.
“ALEX!” Teiga yelled.
I thought this meant to look over her way, and just as I did, the boom cracked right into my skull. I saw a bright light, then fell into the corner of our tiny sailboat.
Teiga immediately came to my aide and put her hands on my forehead. According to her you could see my skull! She was asking me questions to keep me conscious and checking to see how I was responding, when she asked me the name of my hamster. She didn’t know yet that he had died a few months ago, so when I paused to think, she freaked out.
Finally someone got to us in a motorboat from the beach. We had two chase motorboats for the camp. One of them had taken off about a half hour before towing the rest of the sailboats because the instructors had decided it was too rough for the kids to sail back. They would eventually come back and shuttle the kids and gear to the harbor.
I crawled into the bottom of one of them, and the counselor Elizabeth took off across the choppy waves, while I sang It's A Hard-knock Life to myself. Of course, I couldn’t go without screaming to Teiga how much I loved her. I can still picture the heart breaking image of her crying in the back of the sail boat while she pulled herself together to sail it back to the island.
Teiga is the ultimate boss and I am honored to be her friend.
Once I got to the dock, Elizabeth got some help and a phone. A nice fisherman gave me his shirt to put over my head because it was really sunny in the harbor and the sun was hurting my eyes. Elizabeth called 911, and then my grandmother, who I was staying with. I was put on the phone and was able to make it sound like it was just a mere flesh wound.
I am a very good liar.
She was having lunch with her sister at the time and didn’t think she would be gone for very long. Luckily, her sister knew better and headed home.
The ambulance arrived, and I was taken to it on a stretcher, despite my protesting that I could walk.
Even when I’m concussed I still like to do things myself.
Teiga’s mother Jaja, who was also the head instructor at the camp got into the ambulance with me. She was barefoot in just her swimsuit and lifeguard sweatshirt but still managed to order the EMTs around making sure I got fluids and blankets. I am so grateful for her being there because I got the best care I needed. Her ordering everyone around continued even after we arrived at the ER, where she was eventually kicked out.
What another incredible woman.
I had to spend a night in the hospital while they did scans and tests on me, and considered airlifting me to a bigger hospital because there was some blood in my brain.
It’s funny how even though I was so out of it, I remember certain details VERY well. Like the doctor stitching up my head. Fun memory.
My sailing camp friends came to visit, and I’m so glad they did, even if the doctor told me I needed peace and quiet. You especially want that when your parents are 3,000 miles away in Alaska and won’t be coming to Maine any sooner than they already planned because they know you’re a tough Marine child.
Since that summer, I have not had any thrilling accidents, now everything I do is dumb.
For example, last spring I rolled my ankle stepping out my back door, something I do at least twice a day EVERY DAY, three days before my big end of the year show. It was sprained pretty bad and made dancing rough. But I just kept going, you have to dance on pain.
Like the time I broke my toe during a ballet class and didn’t realize it for a couple months. I had brushed the side of my big toe in an incorrect way and heard a crack.
Turns out, the tendon had ripped off part of the bone. I kept dancing on it for 4 months before I finally made it through the process of referrals and various doctors (just LOOVE my insurance) to find out that it had pretty much healed (slightly incorrectly) and there was nothing I could do for it. It doesn’t cause me much pain now, but it certainly did before. (The picture for this blog post is the x-ray of my foot)
I’ve had ingrown toenails surgically removed, and lots of weird bruises but nothing quite as extreme as I used to have. Have I matured?
I’m keeping my fingers crossed.