Saturday, February 19, 2005

On Being Hit by Lightning

OK, got a couple of questions about the lightning thing.

When I was 14 and moody as only a teenager can be. (Let's hear it for hormones guys.) I got into it with my mother... again. So I went for a walk to cool down. A whole day walk. (I really do have a temper.) During the course of said walk a really wicked storm came up. One of those nasty summer storms that breed tornadoes (and yes, I've been around more than one of those too, but not really bad ones -- whole different story thanks). So I ducked into an apartment complex doorway to wait it out. I had one of those "bubble umbrellas" (for those of you who aren't old enough to know what they are, they were clear, made of rubbery stuff and were really in a deep upside down U shape to cover most of the bod and had LOOOONG ferules.) ANYWAY, I waited until most of the storm had blown over and decided that, as bad as it was, my mom was probably worried about me. So I decided to walk across the street across the huge nearly-empty parking lot to the Baptist Church and use the phone.

(OK SIDE NOTE HERE -- I have since learned that immediately BEFORE the storm and immediately AFTER the storm are when lightning is the most dangerous. I didn't know that then. I was 14 and apparently, an idiot.)

So, I get half-way across the parking lot and WHAM. Felt like I got hit on the head with a ball bat. Staggered me and almost knocked me off my feet. I figured I must've gotten beaned by a wind blown tree limb -- but there was nothing on the ground. My head hurt like... well, like I'd been hit on the head with an oversized tree limb. So I made my way toward the church where a few stray Baptists who were hanging out after a wedding were acting a little weird and hysterical. I asked where the phone was, and was told there wasn't one. All they had was a pay phone. "Rats. Oh well..." I turned around and was getting ready to go, but one of them started pressing money into my hands and they all kept asking me if I was all right. "Fine. Why?" Nobody answered, they were just being kinda weird, so I went to the pay phone. When I set the umbrella down to call my mom I noticed that the ferrule (all 4-6 inches of it) was GONE and the rubber/plastic was singed from the point down a ways.

Anyway, had a headache for about three weeks, but it eventually went away. (There must be some significance to 3 weeks in my life. Most of my worst recovery periods from bad injuries run about 3 weeks). I still have some really weird side-effects that nobody really believes if I talk about them (until they see them, then they kinda weird out on me). HOWEVER, I found out that the CU Medical Center was doing a study on lightning victims and had a website. Guess what? My weird symptoms actually aren't all that unusual. WHOO HOO. (I am all in favor of things that tell me I'm not as nuts as most people think I am.) They had this survey with symptoms and it was like: Yes, yes, yes, no, no, yes, no, yes, yes yes YES. So I guess I'm a fairly typical lightning victim.

Oh and guess what else. Once you've been hit by lightning once, you're way more likely to be hit again. SO, if we're out in the rain, you might want to stay a little ways away from me and some of those golfers. Really.

4 comments:

Y said...

OMG Cie! What a story. And the most astonishing thing is that it's all true! GOSH!

You didn't go into the side effects you mentioned, maybe I'll have to research it on the internet.

By the way, you really have a way with words!

Thanks so much for sharind something so personal and I'm glad that you're alright.

:)

Y said...

OMG Cie! What a story. And the most astonishing thing is that it's all true! GOSH!

You didn't go into the side effects you mentioned, maybe I'll have to research it on the internet.

By the way, you really have a way with words!

Thanks so much for sharing something so personal and I'm glad that you're alright.

:)

Y said...

Oooops! Posted twice! LOL... :)

Anonymous said...

WOW, what a wild story! Thanks for posting it, I can't imagine something like that happening to someone, wow!
Jim