Last Sunday afternoon I was hit in my lower back at a small, local grocery store. The woman who hit me slammed her full shopping cart into me, and it was heavy. I could feel things in my lower back scream in agony at me. I immediately knew this was BAD.
Instead of reacting like a normal person, she said, “Why are you standing there?!” in a condescending “the world revolves around me” tone of voice, and proceeded to clip my right hip on her way out the door. I was in so much pain, but I did not scream or fall on the ground. I quickly assessed the busy store, the lack of attention to what had just occurred, the cashier bagging my items while my card payment jingled musical approval, and immediately realized that if I fell and called 911, I’d be a YouTube joke and the stores’ employees could be fired. Yes, those are selfless thoughts in the midst of mind-shattering pain, but screaming out in a store rife with elderly people didn’t seem like a smart idea, and I knew every other person would be whipping out their phone. We live in a very sick world where people think that’s appropriate.
I lost a week of my life to someone’s awful behavior. I had hoped I’d be able to go to my appointments, run errands, do laundry, clean, organize my clothes, and live my usual existence as a sufferer of Fibromyalgia and chronic pain. Instead, the pain was not something you could think through, or past. it was all encompassing.
Ultimately, I sent the store’s corporate headquarters a strongly worded e-mail. I do NOT want to this to happen to another customer. Talking to my best friend tonight, her seven hours ahead, she told me, “I bet this has happened before. You cannot be the first person this has happened to in one of their stores.”
Last week I consulted briefly with a personal injury attorney, and was told I definitely have a case, despite the fact that the store has no cameras. I was told, “You were injured on their premises. That makes them liable. Regardless of whether or not you already suffer from chronic pain, they should cover your medical expenses, any testing your insurance will not cover, pain management and medication, pain and suffering, and any potential lost income.” One lawyer wanted an obscene retainer. The first simply advised.
I’m not greedy. I simply want this accident, which increased my pain tenfold, to be over. I want the pain to stop. I don’t want to live in traumatized fear that some stupid bitch is going to hit me again and cause further harm. Today, someone missed me by an inch, except they immediately apologized and asked if I was all right. See the difference? I do want the tests covered, and the income I had to turn down last week when, suddenly, people returned to me with huge editing jobs. I can barely sit without wanting to die, so I had to say no to two big contracts. I said no to smaller things, too. I don’t usually say no, even on open-ended deadlines. If I don’t feel I am healthy enough to finish a job (both of which required my full attention and roughly sixteen hour days doing nothing, but focusing on their manuscripts.), it is wrong to say yes and accept 50% of the payment upfront. If I can’t deliver, that’s not fair to the client, but I knew I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t tolerate the pain enough to block it out.
You’ll notice I did not name the store, the location, or give any other identifying info. Not only am I a loyal customer, but they don’t deserve the negative publicity.
Despite what I’ve been through, I would like to keep a positive mindset. I want to move forward. I don’t know if I’ll be able to, but I have no choice but to go back to my spine specialist and ask him to run the tests based on the fact that I was clearly injured. The one good thing in all of this craziness is that my doctors here have ALL ignored my lower back completely. They’ve refused to run tests, but I can’t keep going like this without x-rays and an MRI. I need to know what is causing the pain because this doesn’t feel muscular, it feels like bone. It was warm for January that day, so under my coat, I only had a t-shirt on instead of my usual 2-3 layers. There was nothing to cushion some of the damage or any of the impact.
If I don’t survive this week, I will have someone post a notice. In the meantime, I am praying and I hope the Universe will be kind in return.
copyright 2019 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. All written work may not be re-posted anywhere without express written consent from the author. This authors’ work and personal photos are protected under United States and International copyright laws. Additional protection is covered under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.