It is a night I will never forget. A lot of people have asked me what happened and its hard to remember everything on the spot and some things come and go. So I am writing this for anyone who is curious that wants to read what happened.
I was on my way to my aunts house to watch the UK national championship game. I had picked up my best friend, Ted, and we literally less than two miles from her house. I was running low on gas so when I got off the interstate I coasted down the exit ramp in neutral. The light at the bottom was red but I was making a right hand turn and there was no one coming so I slowed down a little, but not much. I was behind a mid-size SUV. About the size of a Jeep Cherokee, maybe a little smaller. I got down to 20 (remember I was trying to save gas) so I put my car in third gear and accelerated some. Not much. It was an old car that took a while to accelerate. The driver braked, got in the turning lane to turn right and had her turn signal on. Because she was in the turning lane with a turn signal on I assumed she would be turning so I sped up a little more. I know I never got above 30 though. But she passed up the road and swerved and got right in front of me. I hit my brakes and swerved as hard as I could to miss her but I didn’t. I hit her in the back left corner of her car (remember, she came from the right and slightly in front of me.) I remember thinking “Oh Im going to hit her.” “I hit her.” “My car is rolling. This really sucks” “Now I know Ginna felt” “I’m just an average guy doing an average day thing, how does this happen.” Then I just saw white. I assume it was the air bag. I think I black out as well because the next thing I remember was Ted saying “We have to get out of here.” I remember saying “I don’t know how!” He said he couldn’t find a way out and couldn’t get the door open. He says he remembers me kicking the window out. I don’t remember this but it is the only window that was busted, so I do believe I hit it. I crawled out and he crawled out afterward. I just stood there panicked, he raced over to the grass and set down. People came rushing out of the house. I asked who I hit because the car had moved to a drive way just passed the road. A lady said it was her. I checked in with Ted who was on the ground shaking and he said he was fine. He called his fiancé and his mother who I had to convince to not come get us. I don’t remember what exactly I said, but it worked. I assured the lady I hit that we were okay and I made sure she was okay. I must have hugged her and held her hand at least 50 times. I was terrified and I could see she was scared. I went back to the car to look for my phone but I couldn’t see anything. I was afraid to crawl in it. Another lady who was taking care of Ted yelled at me to get away from the car. She said she had some kind of license or something. I really don’t remember what it was, but she got Ted a blanket and was yelling at him because he kept trying to stand up and move around. I asked him if he was fine, he said he was. I looked at her and I said “He’s a control freak. If he say he is fine, Im sure he is fine he just doesn’t like being told what to do.” I asked to borrow someones phone. I kept saying “Can someone please just get a hold of my family. I need to let them know what happened. They are only like a mile down the road. And I have to tell my girlfriend. I have to call Becky. She needs to know!” Nobody would offer me their phone. At one point I said “I need to call them” and someone said “I already did, the cops and ambulance is on their way.” I don’t remember them arriving. I just ran back and forth between my car and Ted screaming “Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! I don’t know what to do!” I didn’t know anyones number off the top of my head so I couldn’t call anyone from Teds phone. finally I realized I knew my moms number so I called her. I apologized a lot. She called my dad. I hugged Ted a lot. I hugged the girl we hit a lot. She said she was never turning on the road, just into the driveway. I talked to her husband. I don’t remember his name. Jack something I think. He made sure we were okay. I saw kids looking out the window and asked how old they were. He said 4 and 6. I told him about my nieces and nephews and how they were waiting for me to get to my aunts. I don’t remember the cop getting there. I remember him asking for my insurance card. I couldn’t find it in my wallet, I felt like I kept looking at the same places over and over again. I just gave my wallet to the lady that I think was the one who was certified in whatever. I was talking to somebody. The cop maybe, but he would have needed my insurance so maybe not. But she brought my wallet back. A few minutes later the cop did come tell me the insurance card was expired and asked if I had a new one. I said I did but again my wallet felt so jumbled that I didn’t know where it was. I just starting throwing all my cards on the ground. The officer said “you don’t have to do that now son.” and I said “I just don’t know where it is I have too much crap in here.” Something finally clicked I remembered where I had it so I gave it to him and picked up everything off the ground. Traffic was starting to pile up and I remember hoping my dad was in that traffic to come see me. The girl I hit was being checked out by the EMT and I made sure she was okay. I went back to look for my phone in my car but I didn’t see it. Everything was a mess. Ted went to the ambulance and I went after him. I saw my dad running toward the scene though and I told them I would be right back and I was going to see my dad. He walked up and was looking at my car. He said “my son…” I said “I’m here dad.” He said “you’re my son.” I said yes and he said “you’re okay.” I told him I was then told him I would be right back and that I was going to get checked out by the EMT. I went to the ambulance and Ted was talking to the EMT. I realized pretty quickly that I knew him too. I went to middle school with him and I made some jokes about dumb things we used to do. Ted got cleared and let me use his phone to see if Beckys number was on Facebook. It was so I called her. Hearing her voice is probably the thing that soothed me the most. We didnt talk long. While I was in the ambulance a wrecker came and I saw my car get flipped back over. The girl I hit came to the door of the ambulance and thanked me for making sure she was okay, that I was a big comfort to her and said she was sorry it happened. I got cleared by the EMT and stepped out. Ted was there and he said he had my phone. He said he called it when they flipped my car and found it under a pile of glass. I talked to the cop some more and he told me if I wanted to get everything out of it I would have to go to the impound lot. He gave me a card that had a link to where I could get a copy of the police report and gave me his name and badge number. I don’t remember much else of what he said. I was calming down a little at this point, but I was still upset. I hugged my dad and the officer said we could go. We were walking to my dads car and I looked at ted and said “there is no way she was turning on that street. She—” I stopped talking because I felt like I imagined it or it wasn’t right or something. He finished it though and said “I know man. She swerved and got back in front of you after being in the turning lane.” We had not discussed that before. We had hardly been around each other after it happened. We gave our accounts at different times so I didn’t know he said that and he didn’t know I did either until we said it then. Later on Ted told me the girl who said she was a nurse didn’t come out of the house but she was in a car behind us. I don’t know how close she was so I don’t know if she saw the suv swerve back over into my lane. I hope she did because that would help my case a lot. Right now by law it is my fault but I know what happened. I know she was in the turning lane with her turn signal on and swerved and got back in front of me. I don’t think it was on purpose. I don’t think she meant it. But she definitely was not paying attention and it makes me so mad that I lost my car and it is my fault by law when I KNOW what happened.
These next few days will break me.
Yesterday my youngest nephew turned two years old. I was discussing this with one of my friends last week and we started talking about our nieces and nephews. I have two of each with another niece on the way, she has 3 or 4 but only gets to see one because of distance. We were talking about how great it is to be an uncle (in her case, aunt) and I said “Being an uncle really is one of the greatest joys in my life.” That sentence got me thinking. What are the biggest joys in my life?
Obviously being an uncle. I have the best girlfriend in the world and I am so lucky to see her almost every day and have her support when things get rough (which they have been lately, especially today.) I have great friends who I can just hang around with and enjoy myself. Music, while it has fallen because of the amount its forced into my life, is still up there. But there is one VERY important thing missing.
My joy in being a Christian had faded immensely. Being a christian has seemed more like a chore to me. Just another thing to do an keep up with on top of my school work, my job, my practicing, my observations, my studying and tests, my clubs, my time with Becky. My faith has been a roller coaster over the past few years and months. I have never doubted God, but I was not faithful to Him at all like I should have. I put aside so many of His commandments for selfish reasons. My attendance at church fell off big time and when you’re not in the house of the Lord with Gods people on a regular basis, things take a huge turn for the worst.
I have been so overwhelmed lately. I have what seems to be a countless list of things to do before the semester is over. I literally took three things off that list the other day, but added five more and I also four huge final project. On top of that, if I want to student teach next spring I have to nine hours over the summer. One of those classes has to be done here on campus. I don’t know if Im going to stay on campus, try to stay with a friend, live with my grandma or another relative?
It’s funny how if your faith isn’t right, other things aren’t right either. Even though I am boggled down with enough work to keep me busy for another year my faith HAS GOT TO BE my number one priority. Reading and studying His word on a more consistent basis. Attending church regularly. Praying more often. Stop making excuses for my actions.
My faith should not be a chore. My faith should be a part of me, like being an uncle. Being proud to be an uncle is great, and running and trying to keep up with school work are important to me as well.But the second they pass up my faith, or my joy in being a servant of the God Most High, I will lose my joy.