In Case Of Emergency Break Glass
You Gotta Have Friends
Case in point, last year when I was in an automobile accident – exactly one week from my birthday a driver, on her mobile phone no less, hit my car from behind forcing me into the vehicle in front of me. My car was totaled, my ribs were cracked. The adrenaline was rushing so quickly through my veins that I could not feel anything other than a sharp pain in my abdomen and shoulder.
Having been hit so hard, the airbags in my vehicle deployed and I was hit directly in the face by the drivers’s side airbag. Smoke and this strange white dust were filling my vehicle. I was pretty light-headed and could not breathe when the EMT arrived. They took pictures with my iPhone and asked me if I needed to go to the emergency room – I explained no (my greatest fear is to go to an emergency room) that I would deal with it but that I needed to sit down. The EMT hooked me up to some oxygen and began to ask me questions as I struggled to remain coherent.
Inevitably the question arose, ‘Who can we call on your behalf?’ and my response was, ‘No one.’ I have no family so this is always uncomfortable. ‘The last person that was listed on any insurance paperwork is no longer with us.’ I shared.
The female EMT said, ‘I’m sorry to hear that, but you are going to need to get looked at within the next 24 hours. Your body absorbed some major impact!’ and I agreed to head to Grady Healthcare System later that evening. And so I did, only to sit for hours to wait until my ribs were taped up and a pain reliever/muscle relaxer provided (I found out later on that I was not supposed to drive after taking it). They said that they’d call Janet Harper (a dear friend who offered ages ago to be my ‘in case of emergency’ person. Alas, since Janet had twins a few years ago she has been pretty busy.
I waited for 4 hours and no one came. No Janet, no one. I called a taxi service and the took work off the next day and asked a neighbor to drop me off at my car the next evening.
Three days later Janet called, apologizing profusely since she lost her phone and the battery was dead. They finally found the bloody thing at the bottom of a diaper bag. She was calling the voicemail to collect messages every couple of days until they found it and she retrieved the messages from the emergency room only moments before she found the phone and ultimately rang me.
I acted cool and told her no worries, but deep inside I was feeling quite sorry for myself.
With time, I got over it and all was well. I got a used car, one very similar to my old one with low mileage and a bit of work that needed to be done. Everything was going well until recently, when I was the victim of another hit. This time by a very responsible young man and his fiancée who were merely not looking when they hit me.
While this was a small fender bender, I chose to post the photos on Facebook and announce the unfortunate incident that I was fortunate enough to not have any injuries from. There were tons of comments of concern that I responded to one by one. And then later on in the afternoon, I received a call from Laetitia, ‘Tante, are you okay? I saw the photos on Facebook and I know your last accident was jarring, are you alright?’ I assured her that I was fine just as this avalanche of love broke through and washed over me, as I began to weep. Not tears of sadness, but tears of joy – she was concerned for me. I did not let her hear it as I thanked her for her concern and quickly hung up the phone.
I suppose having her concern meant something to me and I did not realize it until that very moment that not having an ‘in case of emergency’ person is okay, but having someone who truly cares can be truly magnificent!