I remember jumping onto the back of the mower for a ride while Dad cut grass. We looped around the yard while my brothers caught snakes to stuff in our neighbors mailboxes. Dad stopped and went into the garage for something, while he was gone I laid down—I’m not sure why. When he came back he didn’t see me lying there and started backing up. Dad wore earplugs while he mowed, so at first he couldn’t hear me screaming. The blade hacked into my leg and I passed out, my brothers told me later Dad jumped off and flipped the mower onto its side to get me out. I came to in the tub while water tried to wash away the blood squirting out of my gash, and my parents screamed at each other about what to do. I blacked out again from the pain, and woke up to doctors telling my parents they couldn’t help me and to take me to the ER in the city. The nurses there stuck me full of needles, and I was afraid if I bent my arm they’d punch all the way through.
I remember waking up in the hospital covered in sticky circles. It was dark and I was alone, so I started to scream. I wanted to get out of bed but my leg was numb and thick with bandages, and I was attached to a pole by a needle and tubes. The nurses heard me screaming and rushed in, but I was afraid of them, too. Someone got my Mom, but I was mad at her for leaving me alone in a scary place, so I just kept on screaming and crying.
I remember how many people came to visit me in the hospital and give me hugs and presents. I was one of those tragic stories you hear about on the news, and I couldn’t get enough. Finally the little attention fiend got her desperate needs met. When I got home my Mom gave me a glass bell, and everyone had to come running to see what I needed whenever I rang. My parents made up the pull out couch in the living room so I could be in the center of the house, and I got to watch TV and eat popsicles all day long. But soon my cast was sawed off and I learned to walk again, plunging me back into insignificance.