Thursday, 10 February 2011

Guest post by my son Dan

My experience of a cricket ball hitting me in the neck.

Yes you did read the title correctly. I was hit by a cricket ball in the throat on Saturday 5th February. One of the scariest days of my life.
I’d just hit a four and the bowler was making jokes about me being a ‘Pomme’. Harry Potter as we called him, who had just hit 140 runs with the bat walked back to his marker. This was the start of hell for me. As he ran towards me I sensed something wasn’t right with this delivery.
I planted my front forward and then boom; the ball clipped the top of my bat and went straight into my throat. All I can remember at this point was the ball hitting me then opening my eyes and next thing I know im on the floor and there must of been about 10 people surrounding me, covering my face from the sun. I was struggling to breathe and an Ambulance was called immediately! I was hyper ventilating, which basically means that I had too much CO2 in my lungs, this also causes your hands to tighten up. Just before the Ambulance arrived Marc and some other people tried to take my helmet off. The pain was unbearable!! So they quickly stopped. Still struggling to breathe I can remember asking if someone could call my parents. And saying that I just want my Dad...Oh and that im struggling to breathe...
Once the ambulance had arrived they put a needle into my veins to supply me with painkillers, an oxygen mask over my nose and mouth. At this point the paramedics were jabbing me with needles all over my body to see if I could feel any of them...which I could not. I can clearly remember that all they kept saying to me was to slow my breathing down, easier said than done to be honest.
After a few long minutes of lying on the floor it was time to move me to the ambulance. This was the worst pain ever!! They put a neck brace onto me, rolled me onto my side and then boy did I scream loudly!! I was told that you could hear the scream on the side of the pitch. They picked me up, and finally we were on our way to Sunning Hill Hospital. Robbie was in the back of the ambulance with me holding my hand all the way; well I say all the way, I mean up to the point where they checked out my lungs. They stopped at the side of the road. Robbie was chucked from one side to the other side of the ambulance. The paramedic ripped my shirt off of me. At this point I was seriously struggling to breathe now. This was the scariest part as I could hear them talking to each other about putting a tube down my mouth and connecting me to a machine that would breathe for me. My right lung had become bigger than my left lung .Thankfully they didn’t have to as I managed to slow my breathing down my throat as I slowed down my breathing. Only for about 30 seconds or so.
Once we arrived at Sunning Hill Hospital they carried on supplying me with 9 different types of painkillers. Which were slowly doing their job. They then moved me onto a bed and again I screamed as this pain was unbearable even with 9 painkillers in my body!! I was then asked my name, date of birth etc... When asked for my address in which my reply was ‘flat 60 past centurion mall’ all the doctors stared at me in amazement by the fact I didn’t know my own address. Robbie quickly explained to the Doctors I’d only been in the country for 2weeks. In which one Doctor replied ‘Welcome to South Africa my boy’ this brought the first smile to my face!! After lying on the hospital bed for a few long lonely minutes. The Doctors returned to talk to me; this was hard for me because my wind pipe was swollen and bruised so I was almost shouting my answer at them just so they could hear me normally.
Then my parents arrived to see me. This made me a very happy young man. My little brother walked in first to see me and for some strange reason he had a huge smile on his face. Which I still haven’t got the bottom of too yet. He was closely followed by my Mum whose first words to me where ‘Stop getting hurt in sport as this is the 3rd time we’ve been in hospital with you’. After the Doctors had explained to my Mum what had happened to me it was time for my x-rays. Two on my neck which thankfully came back all clear. But before I could take off the brace keeping my neck straight and still I had to go for a CAT scan which was interesting as I wasn’t allowed to open my eyes for more than 10minutes, in which I had gone to sleep in. And thankfully this came back with the all clear too!! So I was moved from ICU to a normal ward where I could sit up and have something to drink which I had wanted to do for a good 3 hours by now. In the ward Alex my little brother got out his camera and showed me all the pictures of the animals from the Safari they had been on. This was taking my mind off of the pain. I can remember waiting around for an hour in which Mr Burger came into see me and said that he’ll replace my shirt for me as it was the first time I had worn it. Good luck or what...
At 6 o’clock this guy walked in wearing an orange shirt and jeans. Turns out he was the Doctor who we had to wait an hour for. My Mum quickly said to him ‘If there wasn’t a Nurse behind you I wouldn’t have let my Son go with you.’ His reply was funny. ‘They call me the electrician for a reason.’ So I stood up and with some tubes still attached to my right arm I carried them up some stairs in which I struggled to walk up as I still had pins and needles throughout my body. Stumbling on I got to his office, where he led me into a back room with a weird looking machine, told me to take a seat, and squirted medicine cocaine up my nostrils. The ‘cocaine’ didn’t really have any effect on me at all. After 30 seconds or less ‘The Doctor’ picked up a camera and started slowly placing it up my nose so that he could see my throat. This had also come back all clear thank god. He then prescribed me with some medication to take and it was time to leave at long last. After getting the tubes removed out of my arm I said thank you to all the Doctors and Nurses that had looked after me during the day, grabbed my stuff and walked across the hospital topless getting hundreds of weird looks off people.
And that was the scariest day of my life.