Two weeks ago, I had a work injury.
On Wednesday, February, 17, I took a maintenance guy (MG in the rest of the post) to one of the supply rooms. On our way back to the office, we turned right to walk down the hall and BAM – I hit the left side of my head against something. I doubled over from the pain. Once I stood up, I looked to my left and saw a yellow railing designed to protect piping, which just happens to be at my head height and I’m 5’5”. MG asked if I was okay, I said I would be, but my head really hurt.
My head hurt for the rest of the day, but by the next day, I noticed a few other things in addition to skull pain. I wasn’t quite as sharp as I normally am, my balance was off and there was some ringing in my ears. To say I was concerned was an understatement, but I was still hoping these after affects would disappear. They didn’t.
My head still hurt to the touch until the 26th, but the next day, on the 27th, the headaches started. I knew they were related to this as all my headaches and migraines always start on the right side of my head. These headaches were on the left side of the head – and right in the spot where it got hit.
The symptoms were progressively getting worse as the days went on, so I told the manager the following Tuesday, two days ago. She started paperwork to file an incident. She told the director she was filing the incident and he wasn’t too happy this wasn’t filed when it actually happened. That afternoon, we spent time filling out the claim.
On Wednesday morning, I happened to run into MG in the hall and asked if he’d be willing to make a statement. He said he would and he did.
One thing that puzzles me: If MG saw I was walking toward the yellow rail, why didn’t he say something? Also, there are no signs in that hallway saying to watch your head.
Yesterday, I got the list of available (read: company-approved) doctors. It was about 20 pages and I started calling at 10:00am and by noon, after calling a number of clinics, and being told the doctors weren’t accepting new patients, I was fighting back tears. This was just stupid.
I quit for the lunch hour – theirs, not mine, as some clinics were closed between noon and 1:00pm. At five minutes past 1:00, I picked back up and at 1:40, I found a doctor who was actually accepting new patients. I knew nothing of her, but with only three sheets of potential doctors to call, I wasn’t being fussy and I set an appointment for next Tuesday. It was the earliest I could get in.
Why make such a fuss about a head bump? Based on my symptoms, it’s a very real possibility I got a concussion, but I won’t get an official diagnosis until I see the doctor next Tuesday.
I’ve not missed a day since this happened (absenteeism is very frowned upon with this company), even though a day off would’ve been welcome.
Today’s Thursday and I’m still very sluggish; I’ve been very tired and sleeping way more than normal, yet don’t feel any more alert for it. I just feel so off. It’s almost like I’m getting a cold, I’m fighting something, but don’t know what. I just want to go home, curl up on the couch and sleep. I still have the headaches, but I’m feeling a little sharper. That’s a small consolation.
This is the second time I’ve gotten hurt on the job. When I was at the post office, I slipped and fell on ice and hurt my knee while delivering mail. I told the station supervisor twice – twice – but he still didn’t take any claim information. Long story short, because he didn’t file a claim, I wasn’t able to go to the doctor to get my knee looked at. Three months after I injured my knee, I had to leave the job; the pain was unbearable.
The post office experience is definitely shaping my attitude towards this incident. And this is my brain we’re talking about, not just a knee. There’s a possibility the company won’t pay for whatever doctor appointments I need, but the company is going to pay for what I need; I won’t accept less. I hope it doesn’t come to it, but I will lawyer up if need be.
My fingers are crossed this isn’t serious, that with time it’ll heal and that the company won’t provide any trouble when it comes to paying for the doctor visits. I’ll keep you posted.