I heard laughter and shouting. I immediately saw Hogan coming to my aid. "Are you okay?"
I couldn't stop laughing long enough to tell him I thought I was fine. I rolled over onto my tailbone, and it was instantly clear to me that the padding I have back there just isn't enough to be falling from the piggy back of a six foot four man and landing on my rear end. Visions of myself carrying a one of those inflatable donut seat cushions with me all around the school building to comfort my aching booty instantly plagued me, and I couldn't stop laughing.
One of the kids reached for my hand to help me up, and I realized then that my hand was hurting, too. Teachers and students gathered round, inquiring about my welfare, and together we laughed about the craziness of it all.
But there was a problem. I was really hurt. I could feel my forearm and hand swelling, and clearly it wasn't okay. I reassured the kids that everything was fine, but then I handed my van keys to Tiffany. I didn't want to drive with kids in the car if there was any chance that I wasn't at my best, so she took over.
Once in the van, I giggle-whispered to her "I think my wrist is really hurt. I mean, if I could stop laughing I would totally cry right now." Being the good friend that she is, she took me to the QT and let me stay in the car while she got ice for my injury.
While the kids purchased their midnight snacks, Caleb climbed into the back seat. I turned to him and said (still laughing), "Caleb, I think I broke my arm."
Caleb shook his head, "I think I broke my pride."
And at that moment the grown-up piggy back racers realized that we were all injured just a little. But they don't make x-rays and casts for pride.
We retired to the hotel, and I decided to call the 24 hour nurse to see if I needed medical attention. You see, when I was younger I had a bit of a reputation as a drama queen, and there was absolutely no way I was going to the emergency room to have them tell me I was fine. There were no protruding bones, so I figured my chances of being badly injured were slim. But if I got there and they said I was just a wimp, I probably would have slammed my arm in the automatic door to avoid the humiliation of being hypochondriacal.
The trusty phone nurse told me to go to the doctor, and the worsening pain told me she was right. Tiffany and I called the boys, and Hogan won the prize to get to take me to the emergency room.
Tiffany: Did you call Trey?
Me: No. He's probably asleep, and he can't do anything anyway. I'll just call him in the morning.
Me: Really. He's three hours away, and it will just keep him up all night.
But my friend is wise, and she finally asked, "Am I going to be in trouble if you don't call him?" So I sent him a facebook message to see if he was still awake, and then when he texted me that he was, I called him. I'm such a good wife.
I met Hogan at the car, we programmed "hospitals" into the trusty Garmin, chose the closest one and headed off to find a Dallas area emergency room on midnight of a Friday night. That's when the next adventure began.