old country house blog



So, the other night , I got up to use the restroom. I was sleeping in Phoebe’s room, keeping her poor lost kitty, “Gus” company.

The hallway was pitch black, I could not see my hand in front of my face. And I remember thinking, “No problem, after 12 years – I can do this blindfolded, I know this house LIKE the back of my hand!!!”.

I came out of the bathroom, and went to walk back down the hall to Phoebe’s room , I stepped…and my left foot went into open air..

“Phew I thought…that’s the staircase…go a few feet more…”,
…so with my right foot I took a confident stride, further forward, down the hall … but instead, I went …
into nothingness!!! Into the blackness….AND FELL.

I fell forward, down and kept trying to grab a rail, the stair, something but I could see nothing and nothing met my hand…flailing , I just kept going down. I tumbled down the stairs, like out of a movie, in slow motion and just when I thought I had gotten to the bottom of the 18 steps …. I flipped backwards…over the rail and down onto the floor below…flat on my back.

For a moment…I was stunned – the wind had been knocked out of me, I could not breathe…but in seconds I screamed and sobbed – “HELP!!! help! Damon! HELP!!!” I was afraid to move and I was not sure I could move if I tried. The room was spinning and my arms really hurt. And then I started shaking, SO hard it was almost like a convulsion but I was not cold.
Damon and Cooper ran down. It was established that I was alive. I could move my limbs…But my neck and my back hurt very bad and 911 was called and the rest is a long story that includes an ambulance ride and ends with good news, my spine is intact, I have no lasting head injury, just a big lump on the back of my head and the 50 odd deep dark bruises that keep popping up and filling in gaps in the story and which will all eventually fade. I hurt all over – I feel like I fell down a flight of stairs…cause I did. But I will be okay.

I am so very grateful to be alive. I am grateful for my husband and my son. My children at college. For Charlie the dog who would not leave my side. For the sweet recent JMU nursing school graduate named Emily who held my hand in the ambulance and put my hair back into a ponytail and kept me distracted with conversation. For the Martha Jefferson ER staff that were each brilliant, gentle, sweet humans. And the X-ray tech who helped me take off my necklace. And kept saying “I’m sorry if I hurt you.”
It was surreal. It happened in an instant.

Leave the night-light on. Always make sure you tell the people you love – that you love them. Even if you fancy yourself “not the mushy type” – figure that part out. Life can change on a dime.



  1. Oh my goodness Leslie! Thank God you’re only banged up! Your vivid description made ME feel like I had fallen down. Nightlight time!

  2. Wow Lesli,
    So sorry for your accident, I know your family was frantic! I’ll bet telling this story will make all of us be extra careful now. We hope you heal quickly and the soreness passes soon. Feel better!


    1. Thank you Susan…If I can help someone to NOT do this…I would feel so happy . It is amazing how your life can change in an instant . I am so grateful that nothing was seriously hurt and that I will heal.

  3. Bless your heart! Having the wind knocked out of you is terrifying! Glad you’re not broken. I’ve left a couple of lights on at night since the time that, at 3 am, I tripped over the dog that was sleeping on the floor in the pitch dark hallway. Then the poor dog stepped all over me in her panic trying to get away from the unknown thing that had just attacked her and the hubs tripped over both of us as he rushed out of the bedroom to protect us against the clumsy burglar……lol! Dog and hubs were okay but I ended up with the wind knocked out of me and more lumps, bumps, bruises and scratches than a prize fighter! I know keep a couple of lights on AND keep a flashlight on the floor by my bed……just in case the power goes out. Yes, I’m paranoid after THAT experience, lol!

    1. Thank you Kim. I went right onto Amazon and ordered multiple motion activated night lights. Part of my disorientation was sleeping in a different bedroom – but that could have been anyone….I am grateful at least that it was me and not one of the kids or my little niece !xo

      1. You’re story made me eternally grateful that I don’t have the two story house I’ve always dreamed of. When you wrote about flipping over and falling to the first floor, I literally shuddered! Feel better soon. Epsom salt baths might help the soreness and aches?

  4. Oh my!! I was in C’ville at Michie Tavern and viewing the Berlin Wall sections yesterday and telling my family about you, your home and blog and your art. Can’t believe all of this has been going on. Glad you are OK ( after you don’t hurt anymore) and I know you have been laying there hurting and thinking how glad you are one of your kiddos didn’t tumble down those steps like that!! Such a crazy moment!! be careful. Take care and heal!!
    PS. I blogged about a crazy ceiling fan blade (http://madebymolliesmom.blogspot.com/2016/01/lookin-up.html) incident a while back ( nothing like this at all ) but with your record you may want to read it while you are recuping and check your fans 🙂

    1. Hi Marcie, Thank you!

      I actually said the exact words to a friend “The only good thing is that this was ME and not one of my kids”. I used to keep a gate at the top of the stairs when they were little just in case they misjudged it in the middle of the night.

      I need to get better and I need to go see those Berlin Wall sections!!

      take care, xolesli

  5. So glad to hear that you’re not badly hurt Lesli. What a scary, scary experience. Hope you are out of pain soon. Something like that really does make you thankful for what you have and who and what is REALLY important.

  6. Poor thing! Omg I can totally relate to this and I am so glad that you did not shatter anything essential! Please take it slow and check your gratitude list daily.

  7. So glad you are OK Leslie!! That must have just been terrifying and shocking. Take some good time to heal! Sending good thoughts your way!!

  8. So sorry Leslie, for your accident.But thank God although the scary moment and episode, nothing awful happen. It’s awful I know, but you know what I mean. There must be horrible the seconds you kept falling down the stairs….
    Hope you feek better by now. XOXO

  9. Hi Leslie, oh what a scare! Phew, so glad you’re going to be ok. You may want to try Arnica lotion for the bruises and soreness. You can buy it cvs. It really helps. I’m a physical therapist and have recommended it to many patients and used it myself. Sending healing thoughts for a quick recovery.

    1. Thanks! Arnica and I are old friends . It is amazing !!! I discovered it when the kids were small. I had walked into a footboard and gotten a nasty scratch and deep bruise on my thigh. I put a bandaid on the cut and arnica all around the bruise. A couple of days later, I removed the bandaid – and the area surrounding the bandaid was bruise free ! I had a bandaid shaped bruise left where the arnica had NOT BEEN!!! It is amazing!!!!!

  10. So happy to know that for the most part you are ok ! As I was reading I kept hoping you were going to end with “It was all a dream” We readers may not know you personally but it feels like we do,,,and while we are on the topic of telling people how we feel…Thank You for what you do….reading your blog has brightened my day many times.

    1. Thanks Ana – you have know idea how your words brighten my day!!!! I feel like each one of you is a friend, I really do and whenever e get a chance to communicate it brings a giant smile to my face!!!! xoxoxo

  11. It’s not funny stepping out and it’s just air……did the same thing Christmas morning about 3:00 o’clock it was storming so bad and I didn’t want to be on the third floor at the lake. Just a couple of broken toes and a sore body.

Comments are closed.