That Time My Toilet Sent Me to the Hospital

Two nights ago, I was rushed to the emergency room at 2:30am.

I've been pretty sick this week with a bad cold. It's not the flu - I tested negative for that, thank goodness - but it shares a lot of the same symptoms and sucks nearly as much ass. My hacking cough, high fever, and body aches have made it impossible to sleep well. (I mean, as "well" as I ever sleep considering no mother sleeps well ever again after the birth of her first child.)

Anyway, the other night I got up to fetch a middle-of-the-night dose of Motrin from my bathroom closet. But by the time I walked from my bed into the bathroom - a total of, like, ten steps - I started feeling really weird, like I was gonna barf. I vaguely remember feeling panicked about this, like WTF WHY DO I FEEL BARFY WHEN I HAVE A RESPIRATORY ILLNESS and pacing around my bathroom gagging a little bit, and then sitting on the toilet thinking I might just have to take a dump instead.

My next coherent thought was, "I need to get my head out of this position." You know how sometimes when you're dreaming, you actually tell yourself in the dream to wake up? It was like that. And I opened my eyes, and I wasn't on the shitter any more - I was on the floor, wedged between the toilet and the wall. I was lying on  my right side, with my head against the wall. Like an L-shape. See the artist's* rendition below:

*Okay, so "artist" is a subjective term.

Curtis was standing over me, freaking the hell out, naturally. Our dogs had barked to wake him up. (Just like Lassie!) I was drenched in sweat from head to toe, so much that I literally left a puddle on the floor when he helped me up. And my right shoulder and elbow were in excruciating pain.

You guys. Let this sink in.


I mean, thank goodness Curtis already knows I'm a classy broad because I can't imagine what I must have looked like sprawled in a pantsless heap on the toilet-y floor.

Anyway, he whisked me off to the E.R., where X-rays determined that I did not in fact break anything. Just minor dislocation (and a bruise on my face where it hit the wall). And a battery of other tests determined that my fainting was caused by a thing called vasovagal syncope and therefore no cause for alarm.

The worst of my illness has run its course, and I'm just a little sore from my fall - but the most painful thing about the whole scenario is the fact that I fell. Off. The freaking. Toilet. And hurt myself.

My brother texted me that perhaps I should invest in one of these beauties:

Via, if you're into this kind of thing.

Next time I pass out, I hope to do it in a more dignified place. Or that I'm at least wearing pants.


  1. Glad you are OK.. This happened to me a few years back. I had a bad cold / allergies / sinus whatever. Could not sleep because of the coughing. Went to master bath, took cough medicine (too much). Rebecca heard a noise and found me in a similar position as depicted in your artist sketch, except I was fell forward, headfirst, and she had hard time getting door open. Rebecca rescued me from the floor and got me back to bed. She called the hotline number on back of bottle and they told her to keep me awake and everything would be ok. She kept me awake several hours and they stayed on the line with her until they felt I was out of any danger. Good thing we have such loving spouses.

  2. If you haven't ever seen it, google the scrubs episode where JD finds out he has vasovagal syncope. You two are twinsies!

  3. That is AMAZING. I mean, not amazing for you, but it's totally something I would do. I've fallen off a yoga mat, yet to fall off a toilet, but it's only a matter of time:)


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