Death by softball

A 12 year old girl died after being hit in the head by a softball. Certainly this is a rare occurrence, otherwise parents would never let their kids participate in the sport, but it does highlight the level of danger that is possible when large balls are flying through the air – a danger I have a new appreciation for after recently (Monday) getting hit in the head during a game of softball.

I was hit directly under my left eye on the orbital bone, probably much less dangerous than where this 12 year old was hit (I’m not sure where the ball specifically hit her, but the article implies the skull immediately surrounding the brain). Still, the area around my eye began to swell within 1 second, and after a minute it had swollen so much that I could barely see out of my left eye. I went to the ER and had a CT scan to check for broken bones, and to make sure that none of the fluid now pressing my eye shut was pushing on my optic nerve. Fortunately for me (and a bit to the surprise of the docs) nothing was broken and I was sent home with pain meds and instructions should my head take a turn for the worse (risk of concussion).

Just as I went to my softball game on Monday expecting only nice weather and good fun, the family of Maggie Hilbrands never imagined how that day could have turned so suddenly for the worst. My thoughts and condolences are with her family and teammates in this time of mourning.


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