I got into a car accident today – my first real accident that wasn’t a fender bender in a parking lot or something equally minor. It was terrifying, mostly because my 3 year old was with me. We were on our way to Toys R Us to pick up birthday gifts for my niece and my best friend’s daughter, and got hit by a young guy who blew through a red light. The car spun several times before it came to a stop and I just froze there for a few seconds before springing into action and getting my daughter out of the car. It was smoking, fluid leaking out all over the road, and I ran to the street corner to get out of the way. The guy was texting, he later admitted to the cops, and this wasn’t his first accident. In fact, he had just gotten his car back from his last incident.
We are fine, physically. Sofia, who is a complainer by nature, hasn’t said a word of anything hurting. I feel sore all over but I think I tensed up so hard before he hit us that I might be sore for a few days. Does this mean I don’t need to work out this week?? All kidding aside, we are incredibly lucky that nobody was hurt. Within seconds, 2 women and an elderly man were next to me, asking how we were doing and if they could do anything. They waited until the cops came, gave statements, asked again if they could get anything for us, and then left. I never asked their names and don’t think I even said thank you. They were patient, kind, and protective, and they didn’t even know us. My faith in humanity is restored. In New York, on a busy Saturday, these people took the time out to help a shaken, shocked mom and her frightened daughter. One of the guys that works at Joe’s Crab Shack even came out and offered to get us something to eat or drink and stayed for a few minutes until he saw everything was ok.
And now, I’m left with a feeling of ‘What if…’
I’m not loving this side effect. I’m reminded how quickly things can go so so badly. We’re ok, we got very lucky, and all I can think about is how badly this could have gone. My son was home with daddy, sleeping, and his car seat is on the passenger side, where we got hit. I was in an SUV, and he was in a compact car. When we spun out, we didn’t hit anything, or anyone, else. Any number of small changes in this series of events and we could have been really hurt. Sofia has been clingy and emotional all afternoon and evening, and to be honest, so have I. I keep hugging them so tight and kissing their faces, trying not to cry. At any moment, car accident or no car accident, these precious babies could be taken away from me, a thought I never want to have, and yet right now, it’s the only thought I have.
So, sometimes it takes a scare to remind you of what’s really important. And they’re in my lap right now.