Monday, December 8, 2014

Wounded Warrior

Today I received an honor I'll treasure for the rest of my life: the Wounded Warrior award. This special designation is presented to the Rochester College employee who was injured or has otherwise shot him/herself in the foot in the call of duty. The award is named for the Rochester College Warriors, of course. Here is my winning entry.

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I'm not sure what possessed me to think that I, a klutzy fifty-year-old, could run like an agile college-age RC chorus member. But that's what I found myself trying to do on the blacktopped tennis court at Michigan Christian Youth Camp during chorus camp in September.

I'm not terribly coordinated at the best of times. I do well to walk across a flat floor without tripping over a carpet fiber. The game we were playing required the losing half of the chorus to run behind a "safe" line before the winning half of the chorus tagged them. My side lost, so I ran. Then everything went into slow motion as I felt myself lose my balance, topple like a felled tree, and plant my face directly on the blacktop.

As I lay on my stomach wondering whether to get up, pandemonium erupted in the chorus. Students surrounded me, shouting instructions. "You're bleeding! Pinch the bridge of your nose!" "Lie still!" "Someone get paper towels!" All that yelling seemed to be far away in another world while I lay there, still wondering whether to get up.

Suddenly, I became very clinical. Someone said I was bleeding? Funny, I didn't feel a thing. A quick check of my surroundings confirmed that yes, I was bleeding, and quite profusely. Apparently what people say about face wounds bleeding a LOT was very true. "Well!" I said to nobody in particular. "How about that? Who knew?" I smiled to myself. Wasn't it great that I had now confirmed that firsthand? I asked for someone to take a picture, but nobody would. Bummer! My nose and forehead had taken the brunt of the fall. "Cool!" I exclaimed. "Now I'll look like Harry Potter!" The students seemed astonished that I could be so calm about such a thing.

I ended up in the emergency room and came out with four stitches. I still carry the scars of my adventure. One is indeed a Harry-Potter-like scar in the middle of my forehead. The other is a divot in my nose. People say they don't even notice, but I think they're being polite. At the very least, I have a great story to tell.
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I share this honor with another RC faculty member who smooshed her nose and broke a couple of teeth. They couldn't decide which to choose, so they presented us both with the Wounded Warrior award. Mine will occupy a prominent space in my office where all who enter will know I took one for the team.

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