My day started out normal, pretty much like any other. I had been up late the night before working on cleaning out and packing the garage so that we could store boxes in there as we packed to move in a week and a half. So I woke up late, grateful that my work is so flexible. I got ready, cut up some strawberries and grabbed a few other things for lunch. Kissed the hubby and kids goodbye and left for work. Moments later my day would go from normal to completely surreal.
As I got into Eldon's little commuter car I remember thinking how much I didn't like the car. It was a pain to get into, the seatbelt was uncomfortable, and it was an ugly two door with a dorky spoiler. As I plugged my phone in after starting the car to play music through the audio jack, I remember thinking that the only thing I did like was the fact that I could play music from my phone.
With Roberta Flack's smoky voice filling the car I pulled out of the driveway and drove through the neighborhood. I saw my friend Jill and her kids out for a walk but she was turned away and didn't see me wave. As I neared the stop sign I suddenly had the feeling that I should put on my seatbelt. As I mentioned above, I hated the seat belt in this car. It would always dig into my neck, so even though I would wear it I would always put the shoulder belt behind me. I remember just the day before wondering if I would still be okay in a crash without the shoulder part, and deciding I probably would be.
At this point I noticed that my seat belt was hooked over the seat behind me and thought that it probably looked buckled to any cops, that I didn't want to wear it because it was uncomfortable, and that it really wasn't that big a deal. But after another feeling that I was being silly and to put. it. on., I finally put it on. And strangely enough I even left the shoulder belt part on.
As I'm cruising along I notice the 65 speed limit sign coming up and look down and notice I'm going almost 50 and I start to speed up. An instant later I look up and realize I'm not turning enough with the road and feel dirt under my tires but as I try to turn the wheel to the left to get back on the road I lose control of the car and the rest is a scary blur with my only thought being: "This can't really be happening."
The best we've pieced it together is that when I hit the shoulder and tried to brake and compensate the wheel locked and I went flying into the field to the right of the road. My husband thinks I would have just slowed down and stopped except for the fact that I hit a barbed wire fence that then flipped the car over.
Once the car stopped I hung from my seat belt for a few seconds in disbelief. I couldn't figure out how I just went from the road to being upside down. I remember feeling hyper aware of everything around me, and soon noticed that the engine was still on and struggling to keep running. I reached down to find the keys and turned the car off. My next thought was Eldon. I needed Eldon. I looked around in the dark interior of the car but couldn't find my phone. However, I noticed the audio cord and pulled on it, and thankfully attached was my phone.
While I was frantically explaining my situation to a very confused Eldon, I heard a car stop and looked over and there was a man standing at the busted out window. I asked this good samaritan's name later but of course it has completely left my brain. He talked me through getting out, having me brace myself on the steering wheel with my feet and the roof with my elbow before undoing my seatbelt. I was able to fall fairly gently to the roof and after a few moments of talking it through we put a floor mat on the glass outside the window and I crawled out. This nice man led me to his car where I sat while talking to the cop and paramedics that had very quickly come to the scene. Oddly enough, I had lost both my flip flops in the crash so I was barefoot and dirty and probably looking and sounding like a crazy lady at this point.
I remember there was another man with him and another really nice lady that talked with me and helped me breathe and calm down. All I remember saying at that point was that I didn't know what had happened or how I had done such a crazy thing. Soon Eldon arrived which helped, they asked questions, checked me out, had me sign a waiver that I said I was fine enough to not go to the hospital, and then the tow truck came to tow the apparently totaled car away.
We never did find my other flip flop, either in the car or in the dirt. The cops had a scare seeing "blood" in the car, but it ended up just my spilled and smashed strawberries, which is actually pretty funny if you think about it. Yeah, we're down a car now, and will most likely have to pay more than what we'll get back for it. But I have SO much to be grateful for. I am so thankful to my Heavenly Father that had the spirit whisper to me to put on my seat belt. If it hadn't been on this would have been a much different story. I am thankful to the kind people who stopped and helped me. I am thankful to the police and paramedics that came so quickly. I am thankful that my children and husband weren't in the car. I am so thankful that nobody else was hit in the accident. I am thankful that my phone and laptop sitting in the passenger seat seem to be completely unharmed and working great.
And most of all, I am so grateful to be alive. I take so much for granted, but I am so, so blessed. In the last 6 months Eldon lost his job, I had bad news at my job,
we found out we had to move, I had a miscarriage, and then the accident happened. Sometimes I find myself wanting to ask why this is all happening. But the truth I know is that in each one of these trials my Heavenly Father has blessed me a hundred fold. He is watching over me and my family, and I know I am loved.
This car though? Not so much. ;)
The Couple Next Door - Book Review
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