Today, I had the best cup of coffee I ever had. It was much better than the cup I had yesterday morning. Of course that cup of coffee came hours before our car was slammed from behind by a truck. It’s not just the coffee that is different today, it is life in general.
My legs flew up in the air. My upper body went forward about to slam the dashboard. Glass flew around me and then all I remember was black. My entire body went numb. As I looked over at my Mom in the driver’s seat she was shaken. “Call 911!” she said. I reached into my pocket happy that I could move again. Then I dialed.
I saw our car today. It was the first time I got the chance to really look at it. No doubt the insurance company will label it totaled. As I picked through the car trying to get what I needed, I had to avoid little shreds of glass. I found a receipt that I had in my pocket from the breakfast from yesterday. It must have fallen out of my pocket when I pulled my phone out to dial 911. It was probably one of the worst breakfasts I have had. The egg was like rubber and the fruit wasn’t fresh. Today I had a donut and it was the best donut I have ever had.
Once I realized I wasn’t paralyzed during the crash I tried to make sure I wasn’t cut or anything. My phone was still in my hand, so for no reason at all I felt urged to take pictures. I guess for insurance or something. I wanted to prove that the wreck was the result of the truck behind us not paying attention. I heard no squeal of breaks, just crunching metal. We were stopped at the time. The car in front of us was as well. We were waiting for a Cadillac to make a left hand turn. As the Cadillac finally got it’s opening to move through oncoming traffic that is when I heard my Mom say “You better stop” as she looked in her rear view mirror. As you can guess, the truck didn’t stop. He slammed us and we slammed the car in front of us. The Cadillac happened to turn at that moment avoiding any damage.
As I sat in the coffee shop today I found it funny I was reading an autobiography on Theodore Roosevelt. Just a few days ago I was reading a part describing how once, while riding in a carriage, Roosevelt was nearly killed when a trolley smashed through the carriage rather than stopping like it was supposed to. After running the math, they found that 2 inches separated Teddy Roosevelt from death as opposed to walking away with scratches and bruises. I’m not saying I would have died yesterday. Luckily I was wearing a seat belt and I avoided some serious injuries like flying through the window. I did realize how easily I could have snapped my spine and could be paralyzed today. For that I am thankful as I sit tapping my toes to the coffee shop music.
“Holy crap! My hat went all the way back there.” In the picture below you can see my white hat flew backwards when I drilled my head on the head rest. The truck behind us was the one that hit us. We were hit so hard his airbag deployed. Here is the terrifying part, where that truck sits is where we were hit. Keep in mind our brakes were on the whole time as we tried to avoid the car in front of us. The truck moved us three car lengths. It would have been more had a car not been there to stop us. EMTs and police started going to each car to check people. All I could think was “I hope I don’t forget my hat.”
I’m sitting here on my second round of pain killers for the day. Glad the only problem I’m facing is soreness. As far as I know everyone involved in the wreck is ok. Sure the cars involved are mostly totaled, but it’s just a car. I’m glad everyone is ok, even the guy who hit us. I could see myself in his shoes, freaking out. He probably sat there and watched two people get taken away on stretchers wondering “Did I just paralyze someone?”
The police officer came to our window and asked if everyone was ok. I was holding my Mom’s hand as she was in shock and I knew her neck and back hurt. The adrenaline in me must have subsided, because suddenly my arm hurt, my neck wasn’t turning and my whole body became a buzzing sensation. “Anything wrong with your neck?” the officer asked me. “Uh yeah” was all I could reply with. Next thing I know I’m in an ambulance on stretcher.
Today, I’m typing away, excited about my week, excited for life in general. Thinking about how this week or my life could have been completely different because of a few circumstances. Instead it turned today, soreness and all, into the best and most thankful day of my life. I’m mostly just thankful I got my hat back.