My Accident and Miracle
The next few minutes were a blur of people rushing down to help me.
Paramedics and firemen descended the slippery ditch to get to me. I waited patiently, though I was worried and shivering uncontrollably, as the paramedics checked me everywhere. I was told to try not to move, but it was so hard because of all my shivering.
One of the paramedics was a woman. She was the one who talked to me the most while the others worked. She had brown hair and a calm voice. She asked me many questions like if I knew what happened, where I hurt, and how I felt. She also asked me if I knew what day it was. I couldn’t tell her. I had no idea. The concussion I had was beginning to be realized.
I was able to tell her how I was trying to go get my daughter from school. I tried to tell her that my daughter was still there waiting for me–and by now really wondering where I was. The paramedic told me not to worry. But I still worried. I had always been there to meet my daughter in the lobby of the school. I hope she’s okay. Again, my unending prayer now had another part to it. Please help my daughter to be okay. Help her not to panic and to stay safe.
And as I sat there, a strange man approached me. He was unshaven and shabby in appearance, but the actual features of his face are a blur to me now. I remember he was wearing a brown coat. He put his hand on my shoulder.
His words were awkward and distorted as he said to me, “I’m sorry. Uh, I guess my tire blew and I ran onto the sidewalk or somethin’.”
It took me a second to figure out who this man was . . . and then I realized that it was him. This is the man that hit me. He was trying to apologize and I was completely speechless. I couldn’t find a single word to say to him. Finally, the paramedic asked him to get out of the way.
I found out later from the police that this man who hit me did not pass the sobriety test and that the witnesses say his tire blew AFTER he hit me because he had run into the sidewalk and me. I also found out from the police that he was on methadone (a powerful drug to help heroin addicts). He was a heroin addict, trying to get off it by using methadone but he had mixed it with other drugs that day. He also smelled strongly like alcohol. He was taken down to the police station, but that is all I know. I never found out. Though often I have wondered since if he was ever able to straighten out his life. But back then, what mattered was my baby girl, my little boy, my kindergartener, and me.
Now remember, I’m a pretty boring person. I don’t live a life of glamour or adventure. I’m Mormon. I was born in Utah. I’m a stay-at-home mom. I’m also a pretty careful, non-sky-diving, seatbelt-wearing chick. Things like this do not happen to people like me. But it was happening, and when I think of it now, it actually goes through my mind in slow motion. I remember how they put a neck brace on me and strapped me to a stretcher. Then they carefully carried me up the slippery slopes of the ditch. A few of them slipped on the slopes and I panicked a little, but all was okay. All this time that unending prayer never left my thoughts or my heart. Please Heavenly Father. I want this more than anything I’ve ever wanted before . . . please save my little girl.
I felt hopeful.
When we got up to the street and they moved me into the open doors of the paramedic vehicle, I could now see all that had been going on above me. I saw the crowds of people, the children passing now that school was out, the traffic jam it caused . . . and I saw my little boy. My little blonde-headed boy was walking away from me holding the hand of the Principal of the school. She was leading him away from the scene and back to the school. My heart ached. Did he know I was okay? Who would take care of him? There is nothing worse than seeing your child in need, and not able to help him.
Just then, a familiar face appeared. It was the beginning of many small answers to prayers–the beginning of many small miracles. My neighbor Alison came into the vehicle and asked me what she could do. Alison was my good friend at church. She was the perfect person to appear at that moment. I could trust her and I knew my kids would be okay with her. I asked her to please help my children. She told me she would. I knew they would be fine. I felt a huge sense of relief now, and just in time, because the doors of the vehicle were closed and I was off to the hospital.