Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Teeter Totters Are Hard

I walked the standard course on Sunday and the teeter totter was in my way, with the high end facing me as I came towards it. I noted that it was in a place where I could easily run into it, didn't say anything about it (moving it would require major course redesign and I figured I could either run inside it or layer it), and continued walking without really planning how I'd handle it. It was inside a large arc of several jumps in a row where the dog would be hauling butt. When I ran Jake, I almost ran into it but caught it out of the corner of my eye and sidestepped in the nick of time, getting a little behind Jake but fortunately he's an experienced dog and kept going.

Even that wasn't enough for it to sink into my tiny brain. With Remington, I was ahead of him coming along the line of jumps, so my head was turned more in his direction as I ran. With a sudden sharp shock of extreme pain, something plunged into my ribcage and rammed m me to a halt in midstride, the upper part of my torso thrown forward. I froze, doubled over The Attacker. (Just read an interesting article in Discover about the built-in fear/flight/fight response in humans that bypasses all logic circuits and causes, isntantaneously, the freeze response first.) Took a few seconds for the initial intense pain to fall way back and for my logic circuits to kick in again, at which point I was able to determine that (a)I had run into the stupid teeter and (b)people were starting to come towards me and if I didn't say something quickly, they'd have me on a stretcher and hauled off to the MASH.

I discovered I could inhale without pain. I discovered I could move. I pushed myself away from the teeter and called to Remington, who was kind of circling back, wondering what the heck I was doing. Judge, coming up to me, asked whether I was all right or something to that effect. My ribs hurt, but I discovered I *was* OK, just a little shook up. I reached out to Rem as he came close, and I tried to laugh, and Rem decided that this was the funniest thing he'd seen in months. He said, hey, maybe if I run faster, she'll do that again! I spewed as many assurances to the humans around me as I could while Remington got himself revved up and challenged me to keep going. I stood up, discovered I could move easily, and we continued on around the rest of the course, Remington moving faster than he had all weekend and grinning the whole way.

My ribs/muscles hurt. I somehow managed to scrape the skin off one knuckle, and that just stings constantly. But it could've been so much worse if, for example, the teeter and my teeth, or the teeter and my gut, or the teeter and my neck, had been at the same level, that it's really not so horrible.

I'd like to not do that again.

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