I heard the wood give, and then I felt a blow to my face. I stepped back off of my platform and dropped to my knees. I could feel blood begin to flow from my face. I was extremely dizzy and felt I might pass out.
I pulled my respirator mask off and dropped it, then stood up. I looked at the garage door and assessed the likelihood of my reaching it and wresting it open as poor. I took a few steps to my tool chest, turned off the radio, and groped for the telephone. I took the few steps back to my original spot and collapsed back to my knees. I felt strongly that I might pass out. If I called 911 and passed out, EMS would have difficulty locating me and getting in to me. My partner works a mile away. I dialed her number, and to the woman who answered, I said very clearly and forcefully, “Tell Karen to come home right now,” and hung up.
I stayed down for a moment trying to collect myself. I saw my glasses lying next to where I had dropped my respirator. I picked them up and stood up, made my way to the doorway, turned out the lights, locked the door, and crossed the back porch to the kitchen door. I stopped there, turned around, and went back to make sure I had locked my studio door. As I was walking back I noticed blood drops on the porch floor, so I picked up the end of my apron to catch the blood as I entered the kitchen. I locked the kitchen door behind me, walked to the refrigerator, and grabbed a dish towel, holding it to my face, still clutching the end of my apron. I passed into the living room, picked up my purse with my identification, and went out the front door. I had just turned to lock the front door when Karen pulled into the driveway.
I walked to the passenger side, opened the door and got in, and told Karen to go lock the front door, which I had to repeat, because she didn’t understand. She did so, got back in, backed out, and drove. I did not attempt to buckle my seatbelt. I collapsed into a huddle in the seat, clutching the door arm rest to keep my balance as we drove. I could hear Karen asking me or debating herself which hospital to go to. I couldn’t answer. Karen thought that I had passed out. I heard us pull in, heard her leave to get help. Someone opened the car door, and people helped me into a wheelchair. Total elapsed time: seven or eight minutes.