A tribute to my Wagging tongue…
Never run along corridors.
This is a lesson I learnt rather painfully when I was about 10 years old. I ignored my parent’s pleas not to run and jump off chairs and doing tumble turns on the carpets….and I was actually quite good at it…
They’d go “Don’t do this don’t do that!” “Act like a lady!”…or “that’s going to end up in tears and don’t come crying to me when you hurt yourself!” It was like a song. But, I had speed and I was young I felt indestructible. The last thing I needed was someone telling me what I shouldn’t be doing….
So one wettish evening we were holed up in the house horribly bored. The rain messed up our play time outside so we were all bursting with hyperactive energy….my mum called out to me while I was in the kitchen making mischief. I shouted back “Cooooming” and promptly zoomed off towards her bedroom. Then she called out again and this time I realized that she was in fact not in her room but my brother’s which was on the right and side hand of her own room. Now you do remember that I was perhaps moving at the speed of a light car and so the split second decision to go into my brothers room (his door was open) was grossly miscalculated and I took a hit at the door frame head on. But that collision wasn’t the real issue, at the time my mouth was open and so when I landed on the floor with my jaw I literally sawed my tongue into two….Lets put it in perspective….Have you ever bitten your tongue? Do you remember the excruciating pain? Now, quadruple that and double whatever you got and imagine you were 10 years old and what do you think you’d come up with?
It was a hysterical bloody and screaming mess that evening. Everyone was crying and I was the loudest. And , I couldn’t even cry properly….my mum got a towel and ice and held my mouth and horribly severed tongue to the car and got my bro to hold me on our way to the hospital. My dad was playing around of golf and word was sent out to him on the 16h tee that he was needed at the hospital As Soon As Possible!
Well not to drag the story...I was rushed in to the theatre and the kind doctor calmed me down and I got a local anesthetic. I didn’t understand why I just laid there and stared at his surgical mask as he drew needle and talked to me as he was sewing up my tongue. I was so calm it the midst of all the chaos. Am not sure how long I was in there but as soon as I recovered and my mum got a few prescriptions I stared showing off my stitches to my brother and anyone else who cared to look. The hospital staff said I was among the first to be stitched with the new stitches that got absorbed and didn’t require to be removed (to everyone’s relief really). So there I was gauze and all...mouth open trying to talk ….it was a drooling terrible mess…I was showing of my new stitches talking in incoherent speeches saying…”aaahhh aaaghhh ahh ahh aha “ and come to think of it, everyone kind of indulged me perhaps because they knew that the worst was yet to come. All hell broke loose when the anesthesia wore off!
Needless to say, I was not in school for about a month and social activity was cut off to give my tongue time to heal… I could only ingest liquids and even then it was torture…for ages my mum had to boil my fruit I had to take vitamin supplements for a while…it took me a whole year to muster the courage to eat an orange or pineapple as it was…. The stitches healed nicely and whenever I get the urge these days to run through the corridors when I am late for anything I always slow down and think of it as a tribute to my hardy tongue that survived and now wags and wags and wags endlessly! One of life’s hard lessons….