February 6 2022
Helpless but not hopeless in Allenspark
Elisabeth Sherwin -- ensherwin@gmail dot com
On the morning of Dec. 16, I fell into a post hole in the back yard and broke my ankle.
We had had mild weather up to that point and Mike was trying to finish some work outside that included reinforcing our sun room, which is slowly sliding down the hill. He dug the holes but before he could finish we had a light snow, just enough to cover them up. Wham.
But as every person who has ever had an accident is quick to say: thank God for our fire department and first responders. They were here very quickly and I was loaded into an ambulance and sent down the hill to Estes Park. Total charge for the ambulance and emergency room visit: $7,374.03 before insurance was factored in.
No, the Allenspark Fire Department crew, the ambulance personnel, the ER staff -- all were wonderful. Thank God. The biggest problem of the day took place when Mike and I got home. We had crutches inside the house but no way to get inside. I couldn't hop. He couldn't carry me. We sat in the car looking at the front door.
We finally called Jen and Rick, most excellent neighbors, who muscled me in the house and onto the sofa (where I would spend the next 25 days and nights before crawling up the stairs to a real bed). Jen and Rick brought over a complete dinner, too, and for a few hours everything was under control as I took stock of what my life was going to be like for the next six weeks.
In our excitement and desperation to get me inside the house, we had completely forgotten about the car, which was left running all evening. By morning the car was out of gas, the battery was dead, and it was locked.
And later when the car was running again we still had the problem of how to get me from the house to the car when I needed to see the doctor down in Estes. Agan, thanks to great neighbors, Catherine and Don, I was able to lurch out of the house and into the car. It wasn't pretty but it would have been impossible without them.
I kept thinking -- what if I had a job, children, or was a single parent? How do people cope? I have a partner who is patient, willing to cook, makes me coffee first thing in the morning, and has taken over all household responsibilities without complaint. Thank you, Mike.
And thank you to all our friends and neighbors who have provided support. My ankle is healing. The pain-killers work, but I think they cause a veil of depression to dull everything.
So I am looking forward to the spring, to slow careful walks with Liz-the-dog, and the appearance of Rocky Mountain wildflowers in the sunshine. And many thanks to God that my accident was no worse.
So, why Allenspark? I'm stuck, I can't walk out of here -- that's why Allenspark.
-- Reach Elisabeth Sherwin at firstname.lastname@example.org
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