...When I finally uncurled myself from my huddled crouch, there was a bar on top of me; part of the roof that had broken off. I pushed it aside, and reached for the boys in the front, trying to make sure they were moving, conscious, alive.
At some point, they asked me to step out of the vehicle. I walked to the side, completely alone, and leaned against the barrier that we’d crashed into just minutes before. That’s when what had just happened hit me. I was looking at the road, noting that there was more broken glass than snow on the ground. I was staring off at where Mr. Man was telling the cops exactly what happened. I watched the paramedics get B-Fray out of the car and take him into the ambulance; he was being supported on either side and looked woozy. I stared at the Jeep, and marveled that we’d survived at all. B-Fray’s side was completely caved in, both bumpers were gone, my door was dented in, and all the windows were busted out. I broke down and started crying.
A fireman noticed, a nice guy with kind blue eyes and a bushy blond mustache, and he put me inside the fire truck, telling me to keep warm. They let Mr. Man join me pretty soon, and we stood in there together, hugging each other, answering questions as we were asked them, but basically just trying to keep from falling apart. He called his mom, got her to come pick us up, and soon, the paramedics released B-Fray to come sit with us. What had looked super nasty was really just a flesh wound, and while he needed to go to the hospital, an ambulance wasn’t necessary.
He was covered in blood though. It was down his face, all over his clothes, matted in his hair that hadn’t been ripped out. I made a joke that he should take a picture of himself, make it a little more zombie-like and use it for his Facebook profile picture around Halloween. It was the first time he or I laughed afterward.
As the firemen found our stuff, they brought it to us in the car – my purse had ended up on the other side of the highway, everything still in it except the set of diamond earrings Mr. Man gave me for Valentine’s. Mr. Man’s radar detector, one of his shirts, B-Fray’s wallet. They were so sweet, so helpful.
Mr. Man and I finally took a moment to look ourselves over – I had a few bruises from hitting the door and the tire jack hitting me, and we both had a concussion and could feel some soreness from whiplash setting in. I looked at the Jeep again and realized that our lack of injuries should have been impossible.
A cop came and gave Mr. Man a ticket: “unsafe speed for the weather conditions” which was utter BS if you ask me. Then, they gave all three of us a ride to IHOP, which was right across the street from the hospital. We walked B-Fray over there (why the cops didn’t take us there, I don’t know). By then, it was past 3 am. We stayed with him in the ER until 6, where we watched Lilo and Stitch with Mr. Man’s mom and B-Fray’s dad. That was the first time Mr. Man smiled, and it was then that I finally started feeling like we would be okay. At 6, Mr. Man’s mom took us back to my car, and Mr. Man and I went back to his apartment.
He was asleep in moments, but every time I closed my eyes, I was back in the car, flipping over again. I started shaking, and I didn’t sleep much that day. At 8, I (finally) called my mom and told her what happened – they were upset I didn’t call sooner, but happy I was alive. When I told them how damaged the car was, they were shocked we weren’t more hurt.
I still am, honestly. As I write this, my head is hurting at about a 1 on a scale of 1 to 10, which is pretty good for 36 hours after a concussion. I’m still pretty sore, especially in my neck, and I’ve noticed quite a few small but pretty distinct bruises on my back and arms. B-Fray is up and about, doing well, and Mr. Man has a slight headache, but is 100% fine otherwise.
We shouldn’t be this okay. Mr. Man went to the impound lot and looked at the Jeep one more time with the insurance guys, to see if anything was salvageable (it’s not). He called me after and told me we were beyond lucky. We shouldn’t have walked away so close to unscathed. We shouldn’t have walked away at all, honestly. If I’d been driving by that scene, I would have expected the people in the car to have been taken away in an ambulance, if not care-flight-ed out. We were so lucky, guys. So, so lucky. And I still can’t quite believe it.
(img cred. No, we didn't take a single photo of the accident.)