The scariest phone call ever.

Hi! I'm Jake!

I have been scared badly three times in my life. The worst scare I have ever experienced was a phone call from my wife.

It was a Thursday. We spent most of the day unpacking and cleaning. Callie wanted to get out of the apartment and get a little exercise, maybe go for a swim or a run. I was feeling less active. Actually, I was exhausted! I had a show that night at Cap City Comedy Club and desperately needed a nap first. It was 95˚ out, so she was leaning toward swimming. The thing is, because of her epilepsy, she never swims alone. If she had a seizure while she was swimming, she could drown! Plus, nobody should swim alone anyway. That's dumb! But, she didn't want to wait for my nap. She's not very patient. So, she told me to take my nap. She'd just go for a run.

I kissed her goodbye, trudged to bed and slowly dozed off. I awoke refreshed. What a great nap! I was  watching Netflix for a couple minutes when I got a call from a number I didn't recognize.

Normally, when I don't recognize a number, I let the call go straight to voicemail. That salesman, or bill collector, or police officer needs my call more than I do. This time, though, I had a weird feeling that I should answer. Callie was away from the apartment and she told me in advance she wasn't taking her phone because her running pants didn't have a pocket. 

I answered the phone. Never has a phone call scared me so much.

Callie was crying.  Immediately I knew something was wrong.

Callie told me she had a seizure. She was crying and speaking words that I couldn't understand. I heard something about blood. I heard something about a black eye.  I heard something about a broken nose. She was calling from a paramedic's phone. She was sitting in an ambulance about a half mile from our apartment. Oh crap! My baby was hurt! Oh crap! Ambulances are expensive! Why do people always call for an ambulance? Just a little education would help them know that's usually unnecessary and it costs the patient over $1,000. Thanks for the hospital bill, you friendly bystander!

I hastily put on my shoes and started running.  My shoe came untied, but I kept running. I was breathing quick, thinking quick, having a panic attack- but I didn't have time for that. This wasn't about me.  I accidentally left the apartment door open. I didn't have time to close it all the way. I ran out of our apartment, ran out of the apartment complex, ran a few blocks from the complex, and I called the unknown number back.

ME: "Callie?
HER: "Jake?"
ME: "I'm running to you. Should I go back and get the car?"
HER: "Yes!!!"

I ran back to the apartment, grabbed my keys, closed the apartment this time, ran to the car, peeled out of the parking lot, and parked in a giant puddle next to the ambulance.

Callie was sitting in the ambulance. Her face was red, bruised, bloody, smashed, and tear-soaked. On the bright side, she said "At least this all happened after we took our wedding pictures." True!

Turns out the physical exertion from her run triggered her seizure.  She was near the lake and only a few feet away from falling in the water. A man from a fruit stand saw her and didn't know what to do.  A runner freaked out and called 911.  Callie told her not to, but she did it anyway.

The paramedics were awesome. Because I was able to drive her away, somehow, we got out of paying for an ambulance ride. Good! We were broke! We couldn't afford $1,000! They suggested I drive her to the hospital. No problem.

I walked Callie to the car. She was dizzy. She needed assistance. She bent over and puked into that puddle next to the car. Sometimes seizures cause her to puke. Unfortunately, I had to walk her through that puky puddle to get her to the car. Oh no! I didn't want to get floaty puke on my wife. She was already having a rough enough day! Fortunately, somehow, we avoided the puke.

At the ER I learned that triage means a nurse takes a look at you and determines how quickly you're going to be treated. Huh. I never knew that. Despite Callie's broken nose, she waited three-and-a-half hours to be seen by a doctor.

Meanwhile, I was working Cap City Comedy Club that week. The show was at 8:00 and I had to show up by 7:30. I told Callie she was more important, though, and I was going to cancel my set. She wouldn't hear of it! She told me I had to perform. It was my first time working there. I had to make a good impression. She is so supportive! So, at 6:00, I sped home. On my way home, I got stuck in a traffic jam! Dang it! I didn't get home until 6:25! Arrgh!

Between 6:25 and 7:00, I had to drive home, change clothes, grab a snack, and get my set ready. Plus, Callie, was coming with me to the show. She had to! There wasn't time to take her back home. Unfortunately, she had a bloody bruised face, and a body sweat-soaked from running. She was going to need clothes, deodorant, and a whole bunch of makeup. Now, I am not a big cosmetics user, so I had no idea what makeup she needed. So when I was at the apartment, I grabbed literally everything from her makeup kiosk and dumped it in her backpack. She has a ton of makeup!

I made it back to the hospital at 7:10. They didn't fix her nose. They merely took a look at her, said she probably had a broken nose, but that they weren't sure. They said there was no way to know until the swelling went down in a couple weeks. They gave us a number for a plastic surgeon and a bill. Due to our low income, they heavily discounted the bill, and they gave us info on affordable health care. We left the hospital at 7:25. I called Cap City and said my wife had been in the hospital, so I'd arrive just before the show. We got in the car and I sped like a banshee. We arrived at 7:45.

Callie is one of the most beautiful people I have ever seen. It hurt me to see her face so smashed.  I asked her what she was going to say if people asked about her broken nose and her black eye. She said "After marriage, men change." Whoa! That woman is going to get me in trouble! At least she had a sense of humor about everything.

The next day, I found a sticky note from Callie on our bathroom mirror. She wrote that she couldn't have gotten through that day, or any day without me. I feel exactly the same about her. I guess that's the best part of that day: Callie and I had a big test, right at the beginning of our marriage! We got through it though. We realized we are going to have a lot of tests throughout our marriage- but we'd always have each other's support to help work through them.

Bye! I'm Jake!

UPDATE: Miraculously, Callie's face has healed completely.  I'm so thankful! She pretty!

Epilepsy advocate Callie Sharon's black eye
one month after she and comedian Jake Sharon
got married