I can’t even remember which way I was driving to my bests birthday dinner…It was cold. It was slick. It was snowing. The last thing I remember seeing, were headlights in my driver’s side door, a loud bang and the sound of breaking glass. Then. Stop. Pitch darkness. After what seemed like fifteen minutes I opened my eyes. I couldn’t see out of my right eye. It’s blown out, I thought, as I ran my tongue across all my teeth to make sure that they were still intact. They hurt. I moved my eyes back and forth, and they became fixated to the house on my left. It had lights on, so I wondered if they would come outside, but they didn’t. Or, at least to what I could see. As I sat there in the silence, I looked over to see a woman, sitting in the front seat of my car. I looked down and saw that she was holding my hands.
The next time I came to, firefighters were trying to talk to me, but it was like slow motion in a movie. All I heard was the constant sound of my horn in a faint distance. I saw faces, but couldn’t recognize anyone. I could see the snowflakes fall around them as they spoke to me. When I realized what was going on, that’s when the pain hit me. My hips hurt. My elbow hurt. I lost an eye, or so I thought. But, I couldn’t move anything. When they cut me out of the car, they placed me on a stiff board and loaded me up into the back of an ambulance for the hospital. I had multiple pelvic fractures. I had fractured my pubic symphysis (yes, the bone on your privates, of all the dang bones to fracture), I fractured my sacrum (fancy name for tailbone), had a contusion on my elbow, and I had a concussion. To make matters worse, my older brother’s wedding was in 48 hours, but I was still here, to watch him walk down the aisle.
I was taking 18 credit hours my very last semester, and because I was in a wheelchair, now, for four weeks and taking pain medication every few hours, meant I was homebound. Luckily, all my professors were extremely amazing when it came time to send me homework and me turn things in. One class in particular was 401, Business Writing. In this class we had to write a blog on anything we wanted to. What the heck am I going to blog about? I’m not interesting. I don’t do anything interesting, or go anywhere interesting…But, that’s when it hit me…I’m going to blog about my accident. I’m going to share how it happened, things I struggle with on a daily basis, as well as my recovery.
I had finally learned how to adjust to life living on a couch and watching endless hours of television. While I had to learn how to give most of my independence away, I began to write, and it was one of the biggest outlets I’ve ever had, so I’m thankful I had it. I would write two posts a week, two—long posts. In my opinion, some of the best pieces I had written. My professor loved it, my classmates loved it, and I even shared it on Facebook so my family and friends could learn about my journey.
I went through something that probably knocked me down a few pegs. It taught me I had to be reliant on others, and that’s a huge adjustment for me. I’m a typical middle child. I like time with the people that I love, but unlike some people, I need to recharge—and I need to recharge privately, by myself, with no distractions. I also have the need and want to do most things on my own. I won’t ask for help unless I’m completely in too deep.
My mom was a champ. During my four weeks of pure hell, she had to get me all my food and drink from the time she got up, to the time she went to bed. She would lay my clothes out everyday, do all of my laundry, change my couch sheets after just two days of use (upon my request), she watched meltdown after meltdown because I was like a caged animal. She rubbed my back, listened to me, and was even the frontline of my frustrations. Through all those things, she still stayed there with me, encouraging me and taking care of me, day in and day out. Four days after I had been broken, basically from the waist down, I received a ticket in the mail for “Failing to yield at a stop sign”, and I was enraged. Are you kidding me!? A ticket?! Seriously!? I’m sitting here, can’t walk, can’t even sit in the same position for very long without being in constant pain and I AM GETTING A TICKET!? I bawled. This is how I do. First, I’m really angry, then I cry. You see, the person who hit me had the right of way on the road, allegedly. Yes, I was at a stop sign, and I was stopped completely, when I specifically remember a turning light on. <——That is the very last thing I remember. There were no other witnesses, except for their significant, who just so happened to be the next person on the scene, a few minutes after we collided. Ultimately, it was their word against mine.
To this day, I still stand by what I saw, a turn signal. But, trauma does funny things to the brain. The brain automatically protects us from things we’ve been through, and perhaps this was one of those things? Once I was released by my orthopedic, I began physical therapy. After eight physical therapy sessions, I began to walk almost normal again (before physical therapy, I looked like I was just leaving a bar, it was dreadful). At the same time, I was nearing a halfway through the semester point, but I still wrote and focused on my journey. I paid the ticket, and was beginning to put the accident behind me. Blogging was becoming my most favorite thing. It was a place where I could put my thoughts and feelings and it didn’t have to sync with anyone else’s, because they were all. mine. and I loved every moment of it.
So, I made it. School ended. I graduated with a Bachelor’s in English and wondered where the road would take me. While I enjoyed the freedom from school, I knew it was time to move onto something different. I began working for an auto finance company and I loved it, but little did I know that the biggest shock was yet to come…
One day, about a year and a half later, I got a call from my insurance company that stated that the person who hit me was suing my insurance company, but wanted to come after me, as well. My insurance company also told me that the other lawyer had taken references from my blog posts online and put them in his report to file. Instantly, I wanted to vomit. They’re acting like I was malicious, they’re acting like I did this on purpose! Oh my gosh, what am I going to do?! I was so incredibly scared, I was sick. I went upstairs and opened my email to the copy of the report my insurance company had sent me. I read the entire thing. The lawyer demeaned my character, my regard for another human life, talked about how I made jokes and they were sickening and I was ignorant, talked about how I only cared about myself, and when I say it cut me to my core, I mean it. I’ve never read so many horrifying, shocking, terrible, awful things about myself. I cried. I sobbed. For three whole entire days, I cried. I didn’t work. I didn’t eat. I cried and I cried and I couldn’t stop. I spoke with a lawyer who assured me that I was going to be okay and that he’d be here for me if I needed him. I promptly deleted my blog and quit writing. I was done. After a few days, I picked myself with the help of my family and moved on, knowing that I was a good person and that no one who’s demeaning me and picking my character apart would have a say in my life.
And it wasn’t until April 25th of this year that I was asked to write again and boy, I cannot even tell you how fantastic it feels to write again. Blogging fills a void, I wasn’t aware that I had, until I started writing again and saw my words come to life. I’m so thankful for this life, no matter how messy it gets. No matter how many times we walk away from something, if it’s one of our passions, it’s my belief that it will always come back or present itself in your life again. I hope you’re all enjoying them and I want to thank each and every one of you for taking the time to read these pieces that are so near and dear to my heart! …
I looked over to see a woman, sitting in the front seat of my car. I looked down and saw that she was holding my hands. I can’t remember her face, but I knew I was going to be okay. I felt an incredible calm come over me and I passed out again. When the paramedics came, the woman was nowhere to be found and there were no others on the scene…
Oh my goodness!!! Brittany, I had no idea! I loved reading your blog years ago, but I’m so sorry to read that it caused so much pain for you. it’s so wonderful to see you writing again (I admit I didn’t read them, …sorry Whit…until i saw your name pop up) you are where you are so supposed to be & i for one love seeing your pretty face!!