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Irrational carseat fear - cellophane — LiveJournal
the story of an invisible girl
Irrational carseat fear
I have a peculiar fear of car floor mats. Just reading a random comment about one somebody made a moment ago sent shivers down my spine. I also have a fear of reaching underneath car seats. Sound strange? Yes, I'll agree. I am a little strange. But let me explain.

It was probably around 7 years ago. I'd just gotten my car washed and vacuumed, and I stopped in the parking lot of Meijer, a big superstore kinda place, to pick up some stuff. I drive a 2-door Sunbird, with front seats that move back and forth for rear seat accessibility. I glanced in the back seat, maybe to fetch something out of it, maybe just to admire its new cleanliness.

I noticed that the rear floor mat was bunched up oddly, and halfway under the front seat. I idly reached down to pull it into its proper place. I gave it a tug, but it was stuck on something under the seat. I wrestled around with it, unable to extricate it, as whatever it was stuck on was underneath, hidden from view. I reached under, wiggling it around, trying to pull it free.

All of a sudden I felt something grab my right index finger, and pull it underneath the seat. It hurt, and my hand and arm followed behind it. There I was, half-kneeling in the parking lot, leaning into my car, with my hand/arm pulled underneath my car seat and totally stuck there. I could feel sharp pain in the top of my finger, and something still pulling my finger under the seat. I couldn't move it at all.

I couldn't see what was going on, so I had to reach awkwardly under the seat with my left hand (I am right-handed) and identify by touch alone what was wrong. I felt along my wrist to my hand, then my finger. I found something metal touching my finger. Further exploration revealed that the metal-something was actually inside the top of my finger, where my index fingerprint is.

It was a metal hook of some sort, curved, because I could feel more metal where the end of it came out of my finger maybe a centimeter away. The metal hook was attached to a thick metal spring, full of tension, which was pulling my hand, flesh firmly hooked, underneath the seat of my car. Trapped.

My skin crawled in horror as my fingers told me the story. I wanted to panic and start shaking my hand free, but any movement at all pulled painfully at the torn flesh, the spring still trying to retract. Instead, I forced myself to hold my right hand very still, as my left hand explored the hardware more fully, and determined the angle of the metal's entry and exit. I then steadied the hook with my left hand and used my right thumb and fingers to pull my finger off the hook.

Seconds later I was free, staring in awe at my blackened fingertip, with two bright red beads of blood welling up from the entry and exit wounds. I had nothing to clean it or anything, and I didn't want to get my clothes all bloody. So holding my hand gingerly in front of me, I walked quickly into the store, and across the entire end of the store to the bathroom. I noted later that I'd left a trail of red splashes behind me.

The bathroom was one of those obnoxious types that only have one temperature of water, warm, which did nothing to sooth my now-throbbing finger. I held it under the warm water until it didn't seem to be bleeding quite as much, then wrapped a handful of toilet paper around it, tucking more into my pocket.

I found a store employee who gave me a cup full of ice, which I held against my finger with relief. I got a cart, and wandered about the store in a daze, holding my ice in my injured hand, trying to remember what purchases I'd wanted to make, then adding bandaids to the list. Finally I got everything home and was able to bandage it up properly.

I still to this day have two round white scars on my fingertip, a centimeter apart. They look a little bit like I imagine a snakebite scar would. Also, I have a very strange fear of reaching underneath a car seat, any car's seat, and even floormats make me a bit nervous....

Current Mood: restless restless

read 17 comments | talk to me!
cynnerth From: cynnerth Date: July 31st, 2002 02:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
OMG, I think I'm gonna puke....

What the hell happened under there? Was it the thing that pushes the seat forward and back??

Ugh...stories like that make me queasy, and it didn't even happen to me. blechhhhh
renniekins From: renniekins Date: July 31st, 2002 02:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yikes, sorry, didn't mean to upset you. Although you know, it was your mention of your daughter's floormat that reminded me of the incident.

Honestly, I'm not sure what that was! I was always too paranoid to reach underneath again, although I've often thought about looking under with a flashlight or something. The seat still works okay, so I've left it alone....I imagine it has something to do with its ability to move back and forth, or something?

Definitely a freaky moment, given how much detail I still remember 7 years later!
cynnerth From: cynnerth Date: July 31st, 2002 02:46 pm (UTC) (Link)


Somehow, I thought it was too much of a coincidence that someone else was talking about floor mats today! *L*
renniekins From: renniekins Date: July 31st, 2002 02:50 pm (UTC) (Link)


From: ex_dcl Date: July 31st, 2002 02:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ew. Finger stuff.


renniekins From: renniekins Date: July 31st, 2002 08:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
aww, you know you love my disgusting entries! (: Wonderfully appropriate icon though.
From: ex_dcl Date: August 1st, 2002 02:10 am (UTC) (Link)

Heh...you know I do....

But man, I have major issues with finger stuff. Finger and eye stuff....

renniekins From: renniekins Date: August 1st, 2002 12:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah? How about fingers in eyes?

Ouch, that's just mean, I'm sorry. Now I'm grossing myself out. I sympathize, especially with the eyes. Very scary to think about.
guingel From: guingel Date: July 31st, 2002 02:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
ahh! good god! how wretched! ::shivers:: that must have been awful!
I'm going to be very, very careful if I'm ever putting my hand somewhere that I can't see!
renniekins From: renniekins Date: July 31st, 2002 08:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
An excellent plan, one which I wish I'd been following....I had no idea what kind of nasty things lurk underneath my seat!
guingel From: guingel Date: July 31st, 2002 09:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
neither did I, but I do now--you've probably saved us all from your fate. thank you :)
renniekins From: renniekins Date: August 1st, 2002 06:53 am (UTC) (Link)
*bow* You're welcome!
mermaid_angst From: mermaid_angst Date: July 31st, 2002 04:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
i don't blame you. i think i got a new phobia just from reading this!
renniekins From: renniekins Date: July 31st, 2002 08:14 pm (UTC) (Link)

tee hee....always happy to spread around my phobias.
(Deleted comment)
renniekins From: renniekins Date: July 31st, 2002 08:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
Actually it kind of makes me feel better, because it's validating, y'know? I would have been really embarased if everybody thought it was inconsequential, and I was a big baby for obsessing about it this many years later.
From: entropygirl Date: August 2nd, 2002 06:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Pretty good story...call me strange, but I like hearing about others' phobias. Fascinating, as Spock would say.
renniekins From: renniekins Date: August 2nd, 2002 08:23 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I'm pretty morbid that way myself. Glad you enjoyed it.
read 17 comments | talk to me!