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Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner

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The Nightmare Continues
By Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner
Wednesday, December 03, 2003



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A young woman learns of her injuries sustained in a car wreck.

A man,  a tall, sturdily built Black, walks into my room; he is dressed in wrinkled, grey-green scrubs, like those you see on "E.R."  He has a grim expression on his face, bushy black brows knitted over intense, brown eyes, a frown, like he is mad or something.

Uh-oh.  I don't like the looks of this.

"What's--"

He consults the chart at my feet; looks to the little black-haired nurse and asks her, "When did she awaken?"

"Just a few minutes ago, Dr. Stryker," she answers.  "I was jus' fixin' to call you, and here you are...vitals are stable, pulse slightly elevated."

I hear a frantic "beep beep beep"ing noise.  Must be wired to a monitor or something.  I see I.V. bags hanging on a silver rack near my head.

"Where--"

"Miss--Mrs.--can you hear me?" he inquires.  He takes something resembling a pen from his pocket, I hear a click, and suddenly, a small, intense beam of light is shining into my eyes.  I try to turn away, but again, sharp pains at both sides of my head resist movement.  I cry out. 

"Stooooop--bright--you're blinding--why can't I move my head?"

"Don't look at the light.  Look at me.  Right here--that's it.  You're doing fine.  Uh-uh, don't try moving your head.  Nurse, pupils equal and reactive.  DON'T MOVE.  Look at me.  You are hooked up to traction tongs to stabilize your neck; you were involved in a motor vehicle accident, and sustained severe neck and back injuries, among other things.  Are you experiencing pain?"

"I can't feel my arms...legs...are they there?  What's going--on?" I say, in a panicky voice.

"What is your name, first of all?  It isn't Jane, is it?"

"N-no...it's Jessica."

"Last name?"

"Freeman."

"Where do you live?"

"Nashville--but that's not telling me what's happening--what's happened--to me..."

" How old are you, Miss...Mrs. ...Freeman?"

"40...not married."

"Okay, Miss Freeman.  I'm Doctor Stryker, the Neurologist on call.  Your doctor.  I was here when you were brought in; you were, as I said, involved in a motor vehicle accident; some bast--sorry, Louie, almost slipped--dumb bunny rear ended you doing 50, you were thrown out of your car and suffered major injuries, especially to your neck and spine.  We put traction tongs on you to stabilize the fractures.  That's why you can't move your head.  Your spinal cord is insulted; it is badly bruised and more than likely, very swollen; it's annoyed, and that's why you can't move your arms or legs.  We call that spinal shock.  It may be a few days or weeks to tell if the injury is permanent.  You are on a special bed called a Stryker frame.  We can turn you every two hours; this prevents bedsores and promotes circulation.  We've been doing that since you were brought in.  You are now in Neuro I.C.U., or Intensive Care; we're taking good care of you.  We are planning to do a further stabilization of your neck in the next day or two, and you'll be rid of the tongs."

"Whoa--whoa--so what you're saying is...I might be...paralyzed?  Permanently?  Oh, God, nooooooo..." I start to cry, but can't move my arms up to my face to wipe the tears sliding down into my ears.  "Nooooo...."

"Nurse, draw up 5 c.c.'s Valium, I.V., please," the doctor says in a soothing, but firm, voice.  He puts a hand on my shoulder and gently says, "I'm sorry."

The little nurse walks out of my limited field of vision--all I can see is the ceiling and the I.V. rack--then returns, injects a syringe into one of the I.V. bags, and everything fades to black.

*end of part two*


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Reviewed by Shelley Patten-Forster 4/29/2008
I'm looking for more! I will be interested to follow this story along. I felt like I was right there in the room with her. Very vivid.

Great writing!
God Bless,
Shelley

Reviewed by Nickolaus Pacione 2/18/2004
A theme I play a lot around with, sleep and dreams -- this one is a real descent into the maelstrom. A snarl to it that has a real monstrosity to it -- you should make the two of them into one story and into something longer.
Reviewed by A Serviceable Villain 1/13/2004
A fine poem - always look forward to reading your works!
Reviewed by m j hollingshead 1/3/2004
powerful read
Reviewed by Robert Blackwell 12/7/2003
Another excellent tale, Karen! {{{{{{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}}}}
Reviewed by Bonita Quesinberry 12/4/2003
If you haven't "been there, done that," no one would know it. You wrote this as though having experienced it. If not, you've done quite well! I have a foster daughter who, back in 1986, was shot: one bullet striking the spinal body and shattering it. Fortunately, it di d not sever the spinal cord. Still, doctors said she never would walk again. She walks today albeit with a strong and awkward gait. Well done, Karla: a few minor things that, as an editor, I would suggest be rediscerned and changed. ~~Bonnie Q
Reviewed by Michelle Kidwell Power In The Pen 12/3/2003
Good question Karen, don't be saying you can't write stories Karla LOL, this was definetly an excellent story...
God Bless
~Michelle~
Reviewed by Rebekah Rosie Lang 12/3/2003
You are getting like Karen, Karla!
Excellent story! I shall be waiting for more!
Thanks for reviews!
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 12/3/2003
*and she says she CAN'T write stories!* LOL (what do you call THIS??)

(((Karla)))

This is a wonderful addition to your story, "Never Ending Nightmare"! Truly enjoyed this; there is a lot of on-the-edge-of-your-seat type action; please do NOT leave us hanging! This is getting good; this is far better than any episode from "E.R."! LOL

(((HUGS))) and much love, your twin, Karen Lynn. :D
Reviewed by Kate Clifford 12/3/2003
Wonderful capture of the moment of awareness, between sleep.




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