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Ella Hambleton

Australia

My name is Ella, my game is... writing! I love to write about nature, and I always aim to create a real mood in my writing, whether it be that warm fuzzy feeling, or a tense, and foreboding one :)

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If you are ever reading one of my pieces and don't understand, or just want to provide some advice, feel free to comment. I am always looking for ways to improve and create more emotion in my writing.

Fraser Breaking

January 12, 2015

PROMPT: Story of a Scar

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 It was a Wednesday in the Easter holidays. My first broken bone. In the morning, Mum and I went to see Dad off at the small airstrip of Fraser Island. He had a doctors meeting to attend. We decided that after Dad had gone, we would go down to waddy point, a charming stretch of beach with multiple sand dunes and an ever changing landscape.

We had been to the rocks the day before, to splash around in a pool like indent in the red stone, much like a giant rock pool, and had decided that we would have some fishing time, swim around in the lagoon and go on the sand dunes.

The blue sky almost blended into the bright ocean. It was a beautiful, clear day. The lagoon that I spoke of was located at the root of the sand-dune, perfect for sliding into on a boogie board. After we had tried, and failed to catch some extremely elusive fish, we drove back to the dunes, so that I could enjoy some afternoon sliding.

All was well until I decided that I would stand up on my boogie board and surf down the sand. On my first run, the speed was exhilarating, and while I didn't quite make it to the water before I fell off and got a face full of gritty sand, I wanted to try again, so up I went, and sped down, with the same result. On my third go, Mum suggested that I move to a different part of the sand dune that, while it was steeper, had smoother sand all the way to the water's edge. So up I climbed, board secured under my arm, until I was at the top of a very menacing stretch of sand. A planted my feet securely on the smooth, foam surface of the board, and began to slide. I felt my balance shifting backwards, I was going to fall, but my reflexes weren't fast enough to prevent my shoulder slamming into the ground at a frankly interesting angle.

Pain shot through my arm and shoulder, my neck whipped back and I painfully slid myself down the remainder of the dune and into the water. I reached my right arm over to support my left, the pain leaving me in a haze. Mum had run over at my scream, and was worried to the bone (pun intended). She asked me if I had broken my neck, if I could move my legs, where it hurt. I do not recall what I replied, probably something along the lines of, "it hurts, I can move my fingers and toes, it hurts... so much, I haven't broken my neck, I don't need you to go all hysterical Mum, and I’m in enough trouble already."

It still gives me shivers to think about that day, and the events that came after. I was driven back to the house which, mercifully, wasn't too far away. Every bump or pothole in the sand caused an ache the likes of which I had never experienced before to shoot through my body. When we were finally home, I walked, ever-so-slowly, into the bathroom, in preparation to wash the layers of sand off my body. 

After changing, with help from my worried mother, into the only clothing I could physically put on, a blue shirred dress with tie-die markings, I was helped to lie down on my bed, with several pillows propping me up, and my book handed to me. 

It was several hours before the ambulance reached us, and another before it was decided that me and my mother would be flown into Hervey bay hospital on a care flight helicopter. An X-ray was taken and it was decided that my left collarbone should be able to self-heal, and it hadn't pierced a lung or anything vital. 

I was picked up and taken Clare Rudd's house, a friend of dad's. That night I ate a lot, and slept badly. In the middle of the night I woke, and sat up, forgetting that my bone was broken. I heard a click and my vision clouded. I groaned until mum awoke, and I told her what had happened. She said that it was probably nothing and did I need another pillow. I said no, and asked if she could help to lower me back onto the bed. 

In the morning I felt nauseous, and I had cloudy vision and a bad appetite. Clare went to the shops and bought me ice-cream, and some other small snacks. She I such a wonderful person, she was very kind and helpful, offering me all sorts of advice and help. That morning Dad had a flight back to the island, and after spending ages standing around at the small Hervey Bay airport, we boarded a tiny plane with only a few seats and very low ceilings. The flight was short, and the pilot was very good, keeping the trip as smooth as he could for me. 

We landed and were driven back to the house by the Caretaker, who had offered to help. Kelvin is a tall man, with short white stubble and kind eyes. He is very friendly once you get past the initial shy stages, and he helped us a lot during that time. I spent the rest of the week with my siblings at Fraser, and returned home with a heck of a story to tell. 

*  *  *  *  *

Two weeks later, back in Brisbane, I was going to the Hospital to visit my Grandad, who had just had his Kidney removed, and Dad decided that we would go for an X-ray, to see how I was healing. I expected to see a slightly straighter and more connected bone, but I was sadly mistaken. I remember the tears that came on that day when Dad told me that I would have to have surgery. Instead of bonding, my bone had shifted, to lie parallel to its other half. The overlap was too big to ignore, if I had left the bone as it was, one of my shoulders would forever be an inch shorter than the other, and that was too big a difference. 

Unknown to me, Dad had called a good Shoulder to hand Anaesthetist that he knew, to book in an urgent surgery, preventing my bone from bonding incorrectly any further. 

*  *  *  *  *

Monday came around all too quickly, and my nerves were building to an all-time high. Surgery is not a pleasant experience. Especially not when you can't move your arm or shoulder at all afterwards, and have had too much Morphine. I do recall one funny moment from the haze of post-surgery recovery. A lady who had just woken up was talking to a nurse. I couldn't see her, but I heard her quite clearly, well, as clearly as was possible for my state. She sounded at least thirty, and was talking to the nurse about how she was in year seven, what year was the nurse in? The nurse was firmly, but slightly humorously implying that the woman was not in school, and neither was she. 

This is where this story ends. Afterwards was the basic process of recovery, and a week in which I did not attend school. I know it may be boring, and most people will not read till the end. The significance of this is that it was my first broken bone, my first and hopefully last experience with corrective surgery, and possibly the worst experience of my life so far.

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  • January 12, 2015 - 3:13am (Now Viewing)

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