Yesterday my DH and R were involved in a car accident. And they are both ok, thank God.
R had baseball yesterday, and I have never missed a game. But yesterday was a "clinic" day, which means that instead of playing a game, they had a big practice where they visit various stations to practice different skills. This is boring to watch, so I had DH take him on his own, and L and I stayed home.
About 20 mins after they left, the phone rang, and after I looked at the call display, I rolled my eyes, thinking DH was wanting to know which diamond he was on. So I was pretty shocked when I answered and he said, "We've had an accident."
Before I could start to freak out, he said that they were both ok and that I would need to come get them, as the car was now undriveable. Just how big was this accident?
After I got the location, I hung up and started scrambling to leave the house. My head felt like it wasn't attached to my body. I had washed two of our booster seat covers that day, and for some reason, I felt the need to reassemble the one that wasn't put back together yet before realizing I didn't need it. What a waste of time. All I could think was that I needed to see my baby, my son. I needed to put my own hands on him, see him with my own eyes to know that he was ok. It's not that I thought my DH was lying, or exaggerating, but it's that motherly instinct. I needed to see for myself.
As we drove the 15 mins that it took to get there, I was thinking the whole time about making it there in one piece. I was extra careful, extra vigilant of every potential threat to us.
The accident occured on a stretch of road that was posted at 80km/h. It was at the bottom of a long hill, so as I was cresting the hill, my heart in my throat and my stomach twisting in anxiety, I could see the now long line of traffic backed up. There were two lanes on our side moving very slowly, and nothing coming the other way. I could see in the distance the flashing lights of many emergency vehicles, firetrucks included.
FIRETRUCKS??! I hadn't realized that this was as bad as it was.
It was completely surreal. To be approaching an accident the way I was, stuck in the throng of cars, yet instead of being annoyed and curious, I was actually anxious to get there faster. I needed to get through in the worst way. It felt weird knowing that I was pretty much the only one who knew what was going on, what had basically happened.
I debated for a minute or two about how to get closer, finally opting for driving down the other side of the road and parking in someone's driveway. I'm sure I got many dirty looks, but I could have cared less. Besides, there was nothing coming towards us, the cars and emergency vehicles had it completely blocked off.
I threw the truck into park and yelled to L to stay put. Luckily he listens, and he was just as concerned as I was about his dad and brother. Although strangely enough, his main worry was that Daddy was going to have his license taken away, despite my reassurances that he was not going to suffer that fate.
I ran the rest of the way, tears clouding my eyes. I know they were needless, but I just had to calm the hysterical mother/wife side of me, reassure myself they were both fine.
R was still sitting in the backseat, looking calm but stunned. He was quiet, and said he was fine, but he was rather pale at the same time. Our truck was bashed in in the front, but the passenger section was ok. DH's airbag had deployed, and I can't for the life of me remember if any windows were broken. I think not, although there was a lot of glass on the ground, but that was mostly from the other two cars, especially the middle one. It was completely munched. Squished. Totalled.
So from what DH has said, he basically sneezed at the wrong time. I think a lot of things happened at the wrong time. The sun was at the wrong angle, the car in the front (there were three involved altogether) decided to turn left into a drive, it seems as though the second car probably slammed on their brakes, and DH sneezed as this was happening, causing him to crash into the back of them which in turn sent them into the person turning left. Or maybe both the front cars were turning left, I don't know. All I know is that DH swears one second it seemed there weren't that many cars around, he wasn't following too closely or being distracted by anything, and the next, BAM! He's slammed into the back of this car, the airbag has gone off, the truck is filled with this airbag dust, and the seatbelts have done their jobs.
As luck, or divine providence would have it, an ambulance happened to be passing by on the opposite side as the accident occurred. They of course, stopped immediately and assessed all the passengers of the vehicles. Despite the fact that the middle person's car was devastated, she was perfectly fine, save a little whiplash. Still, they told her to stay put (even though had she wanted to, she could have climbed out her window) and the firefighters used the Jaws of Life to open her door and retrieve her. Both front vehicle's passengers were taken by ambulance to the hospital, and they asked if we would like one too. However, we opted to go on our own, seeing as how the injuries were minor and it would probably have meant paying several hundred dollars to have that privilege.
The hospital was insanely busy. One woman waiting in triage said she had been sitting there for an hour (without even having been seen by a nurse yet or registered) and had seen about seven ambulances come in! So let's make a long story short here, and I'll just say that we waited for basically five hours before we were finally seen. At some point during that time, I took L home, got some supplies, fed the dog and dropped him off at a friend's house so he didn't have to be subject to all the fun of hospital ER's.
All in all, everyone was ok. Even the people in the other cars (as we heard via the cop). DH has a sore neck (of course) some very nice bruises from the seat belt, and a sore thumb joint, where the steering wheel rammed into his hand. R has a nasty friction burn along his neck where the seat belt was laying, and some bruising and marks around his waist area. The marks on his neck I feel are my fault. I had allowed him to be out of his booster seat in that vehicle, as he seemed tall enough for the seatbelt to lay correctly as long as he was sitting up. He was complaining of discomfort from the booster, which is why I allowed him to stop using it. In our other truck, he still has to use it, as the seatbelts don't come low enough without the booster. But now, he is going back into the booster. I don't care if he's almost nine. The nurse scared the heck out of me when she pointed out the fact that the mark from the belt lays along his jugular. She said he was very lucky to not have had it cut into that vein. Just the thought makes me shudder!
So parents, leave your kids in their boosters, despite their protests that their friends don't have to use them, or that they are uncomfortable, or that the law says that once they are eight they don't legally have to use them anymore!