One night several years ago, I was hurrying downstairs in my dorm, and I slipped. In an attempt to keep from hurtling to my death, I clutched at the iron banister. I succeeded in not dying, but I scraped my arm badly and landed hard on my back. A dorm mate at the bottom of the stairs saw the whole thing. Worried, she asked if I was all right.
I busted out laughing. It hurt so badly, it was funny. This reaction did mot make my dorm mate less worried.
Fast forward a couple of days. I had some lovely bruises: Horizontal marks from the stair treads laddered up my back, and the entire underside of my arm looked like something from a zombie movie. Worse, there were lumps. Not from the swelling (though there was plenty of that, too), but something that felt like small marbles nestled under the bruises.
|This is how my arm felt. It looked a little worse, actually.|
Now, I'm injury-prone, but muscle-marbles seemed a bit unusual. I made an appointment with the campus doctor. The fact that he'd never met me before is the only way I can excuse the conversation that followed.
"Don't worry; it's not cancer."
Oh, thank god! Because, you know, I've heard cancer of the bruise is particularly aggressive, and that it can easily spread to hangnails and eye boogers.
I gently explained that I wasn't concerned about cancer, I was concerned about having marbles embedded in my muscles.
"Well, in severe deep-tissue bruising, calcium deposits can form. Usually, they just pass through your urinary tract."
I looked at him, and I believe he finally understood that I wasn't an idiot.
"I do not want to pee out marbles."
"Fingers crossed," he said.
I crossed my fingers hard. It was one of the more successful "non-traditional" treatments I've tried. Let's just say I wasn't left with anything to put in a Christmas ornament.
(True: The bruise on my arm looked almost exactly like the whale fail error from Twitter, except most definitely not smiling. And without the birds.)