Last week my family suffered one of those life changing events that mark a new chapter in our lives.
My wife gave me a kiss on the way out the door to go to her job, and not even 20 minutes later called me in a state of panic saying that she was involved in an accident. She then gave me her location and hung up.
I got the kids into my Jeep Patriot as fast as I could round them up and headed towards the scene of the accident. When I arrived I immediately noticed police had the road blocked off, and that fire and rescue were at the intersection of the incident. When I rolled up closer to the scene I was struck with utter disbelief when I spotted my wife’s Jeep upside down leaning against the curb and a street sign.
It was clear to me on arrival that the other vehicle involved was obviously speeding, and my wife crossed the intersection at an unfortunate time. The intersection in question being on a city street with a 25 mph speed limit in a school zone, a block away from the high school. You just can’t convince me that you can flip over a Jeep Liberty with a Mini Van ramming it at a mere 25 mph… or even 35mph… only the other driver really knows how fast she was going and of coarse she claimed to police that she obeyed the speed limit. My wife didn’t even see her coming.
The EMT’s had my wife sign a waiver stating she was not going to be taken to the hospital by ambulance because she had no apparent life threatening injuries and I was on scene to take her to the ER to get checked out.
My mother-in-law showed up to take the kids to her place so that we didn’t have to take them up to the hospital with us.
Our friendly neighborhood tow truck driver, who also happens to be my neighbor of many years, hooked up the Jeep to his wrecker and flipped it back over. A tire popped, metal made unpleasant noises, and oil among other fluids seeped out of the hood of the now totalled Liberty. My wife began to break down, choking down sobs.
We got our house keys and the key to my Jeep out of the dead vehicle and made arrangements to clean out our belongings later that night.
Before my wife had even calmed down, the officer that would later take days to put minimal effort into a police report cited my wife for failure to stop at a stop sign.
“Are you kidding me?” I half asked, half scolded the officer giving my wife a ticket. I pointed at the Jeep my poor wife spent all year getting paid off and stated in blunt anger that “That vehicle was on it’s top!”
I noticed the officer mildly gulp and shrug in almost the same instant, and he merely stated that we can fight it in court.
So on top of the complete loss of a $5000 dollar vehicle we are also given a $210 dollar ticket, and I took the night off to be the supporting husband and to clean up the mess.
We left the scene and I took my wife to the hospital. After the initial questioning and a lot of waiting,
I left my wife in the care of the hospital to go clean out the Liberty.
Let me tell you, I was actually somewhat surprised that a lot of things were where they should not have been.
The brand new DVD players were on the floorboard, disconnected, but surprisingly still functional. In fact, mostly everything was on the floorboard, but some of it was supposed to be in the hatch area, like the brand new muffler piece still in the box that I hadn’t installed yet which could have hit one of my daughters in the head had they been in the vehicle.
My wife’s spare set of glasses somehow got lodged between her seat and the driver side of the vehicle next to her seatbelt, the same belt that had to be cut to get her out. Trim pieces from the tire wells of the vehicle were sitting in the brand new child car seat that also needs replaced due to the accident. Some other items were simply busted and thrown out.
I went back for my wife who was released from the hospital with a couple shots for the back pain and a couple of scripts but no x-rays were performed.
We learned after a family doctor appointment yesterday that she actually suffered some separation among the muscle bone and cartilage in her chest cavity, probably from hitting the steering wheel.
She’s been placed on light duty for 4-6 weeks by her doctor, which effectively puts her out of work in her CNA position. So now in addition to everything else we have only one income supporting a family of four for the next couple of months.
I kept telling Rebecca at the scene, “It could have been a lot worse, we’ll get through this.” What I realized later is that I could have lost my wife that day. I could have went to work oblivious of her passing until the police finally figured out who to contact. Had she not worked that day, she could have had our kids with her. We have two daughters, an 8 yr old girl named Maddie, and a not quite 2 yr old named Sophie.
They could have died also.
We have spent the last year paying off personal debts and paying on 2 vehicles, while paying on monthly living expenses and keeping us all fed.
We have been trying to build up our credit score to get into a financial position to buy our own home.
It seems like every time we start getting traction on our goals, we get stopped.
In this short 20 minute drive, an entire year of planning and hard work is undone.
I do not normally resort to seeking charitable assistance, but I’m getting older and I have a rather young family counting on me to build their dreams.
So, at this time I humbly ask for some assistance in getting my family back in good spirits and closer to getting this rough chapter of our lives behind us.