Lately I’ve had the odd habit of waking myself at half past seven in the morning with the terrorizing sensation of a “dead” limb. Sometimes it’s an arm, sometimes a leg. If you’ve ever had this happen, you know how frightening it can be.
You wake with start and immediately sense something is wrong. During your mental check list, you realize – “I can’t move my arm!” Adding to the severity of the situation is the fact that you have either just woken up or are not fully awake to begin with. As such, fuzzy logic quickly takes over. “Can’t move my arm?! They’ll have to amputate for sure. Otherwise it will surely turn gangrenous. OH, Jack Lord, why?” While your mind is reeling at the horror, your body as since readjusted itself to improve blood flow and is lulling you back to sleep. If you are lucky, this is when the good dreams start.
However, yesterday morning, when I awoke, my senses were not so acute. I thought I was waking up because it was time to wake up. Unbeknownst to me, my left leg was more asleep than I can ever recall it being. As is my morning routine, I got up to go get in the shower before fully waking up. Right leg out of the bed; right on the floor. Here’s where it gets tricky. There is a motion you may be familiar with where you combine the beginnings of walking away from the bed and the finishings of getting out of bed. It is a mix between rising and walking: “rilking”. As I was rilking, I put my left foot on the floor, only my whole leg was useless and made absolutely no attempt to support me. It was like I stepped into a whole. The lethal combo of being half asleep and fully confident that my leg was working resulted in an impressive crash. It happened so quickly, that I didn’t even reflexively try to put my hands out to break the fall. My leg buckled at the ankle (see diagram) and I flopped to the floor like a stunt dummy. (“Hey, free dummy!”)
Once on the floor, I had time to sober myself up and assess the situation and decided to lay there until I could walk again. My dog, The Nuge, came running over to help. And by help, I mean he just sniffed me for food, like going through a dead man’s pockets for loose cash.