Fun Fact: I just had a tiny piece of glass push its way out of my face.
Fun Fact for the Fun Fact: This is a normal occurrence that happens every now and then thanks to a car accident back in '09 where my face connected with the passenger side window. The first time I received stitches, first time in a car accident, and first time I got, not one, but two black eyes. Doctors only got the bigger chunks out and that's why every couple months, another little, teeny tiny piece comes out.
Every blue moon, I think about that day. I was supposed to get my license the following month, but ended up waiting two additional months because of my nerves. Car accidents are always scary experiences and this one was no different.
My stomach was in knots when I woke up and I was tempted to skip, but I decided I needed to try to go. It was all I could think about while I was getting dressed it these off white jeans, an orange long sleeve shirt, and my favorite brown jacket. I clearly remembering that I should stay home while I was stepping out the door. I know that I told my mom bye, but I don't remember if I told her that I loved her or to have a good day.
My brother was driving and we were on our way to school, which was about fifteen minutes away. He lit up a cigarette and then attempted to roll down his window. It wouldn't budge. Smoke was crowding the car and immediately, I knew something was wrong. Especially when none of the other windows would go down either. Out of habit, I looked over at how fast he was going.
We were coming up on the last curve before the school. I could see the gym. My brother wasn't paying attention as we were trying to find something to put the cigarette out. He ran off the road. No lie, everything happened in slow motion. Calm as a bird, he easily pulled back onto the road. We should be fine, I remember thinking.
There was a 3-5 inch drop where the pavement ended, like the one in the picture above. That drop caused the back passenger tire to come off the rim. My brother was no longer in control of the car as it took a sharp turn across the road. My side hit what I would call a high ditch bank, but I don't think that's right. The ground rose up on that side of the road before leveling off. There was a slight dip in the road, if that helps you put the image together.
After that, we flipped and spun on the nose before landing upside down. Once I saw myself going towards that ditch, I closed my eyes and thought, "Oh no." When I opened my eyes, I don't remember seeing anything other than the roof of the car and my arms dangling. Honestly, my first thought was, "Hey, I'm upside down. Cool." It was a slow thought that took a couple of seconds to form each word.
"Lindsay," I heard my brother call. I looked and saw him looking in from outside on the opposite side, as the passenger side was now by the road. "You need to get out. There's smoke." He was scared that the car might catch on fire. Me? I wasn't forming any more coherent thoughts. My brother had to crawl back into the car and tell me to push the button to release myself from the seat belt. I fell to the roof, cutting my knuckles, but I didn't notice that until afterwards.
I followed my brother out. He went left and I went straight to rest on the side of the hill. I remember looking over at the school. I could see the entire building and I thought, "We were so close."
Tears were pouring from my eyes. I was freaking out. I went to rest my head in my hands and that's when I noticed my pants. Blood was everywhere.
"Oh my god. Lindsay, I'm so sorry."
I looked over at my brother who just noticed my appearance and he came over to me. A woman seem to appear out of nowhere. She was down the road behind us and saw the whole thing. I listened as she told my brother to call 911. I couldn't help but cry and stare at my hands. Blood. So much blood. I know the woman said something to me, but I don't remember what.
"I'm tired," I told her. She let me lay down and I remember her hovering over me while my brother was on the phone. He was pissed because they were sending out cops first. I can still hear him say, "We need an ambulance. My sister head is bleeding."
I know he then called my mom, but I don't remember hearing anything. The woman was too busy talking to me.
"How do you feel?"
Another car came by. It was a friend of my brother's.
"We need something to put pressure on her head," the woman said.
Easily, the friend pulled off his white shirt and then it was being pressed to my head.
"I'm tired." I closed my eyes. I listened as the woman ordered my brother, who was pacing, to come talk to me. Alternatively, they told me to talk to them. To stay awake. My brother would apologize every few seconds too.
I managed to stay awake. Then my brother and the woman was gone and I had a bunch of firefighters around me. A familiar voice to my right said, "Lindsay, you doing okay?"
"Yeah." Seconds later, I suddenly became alert. "Hey Jeffery!" I exclaimed as I realized who it was. "You're doing good," he said as they lifted me and placed me on the board. The firefighters were talking around me as they strapped me down and put a neck brace on.
I remember panicking just a little because it was either an one strap or a new one and one guy was having a hard time putting it on. Then they lifted me and I was in an ambulance with my brother beside me on a stretcher and my mom at the front.
"Hey Mom," I greeted.
I don't really remember what she said back. The EMT guy was shutting the door and peering over me, taking a look at my head. I heard him say something about a gash and was eerily calm.
"How bad is it?" I asked my mom. (I didn't like doctors, much less needles, shots, etc.)
"It's cut open just a little."
The ride seemed quick to the hospital. I don't remember what else was said or done, except that I kept mentioning that I was cold. Things get more hazy at the hospital. I was transported here and there for machines to look at my head. My brother was still apologizing any time I was near him.
After those tests, I was in the ER in a room with my brother. Almost the whole family was there. I could hear them reassuring my crying brother that I was fine. I think I told him, "Don't worry. I'm fine." He ended up getting released before me. He walked away being extremely sore and a few tiny scratches.
I was in the room with my dad and one of my sisters and I had to go to the bathroom. They put bandages over my head at that point. When that happened, I still can't tell you. Anyway. I can still see my reflection in the mirror. I was as white as white could be. My hair, which was up in a ponytail, looked horrible and there was blood in it.
After that, nothing much happened until I got five stitches and they removed one piece of glass. Then I was released and got to go home. For me, it was odd because I was hyper and wanted to go to school still. I was bloody from head to toe and looked horrible. I thought it would be funny. Instead, I opted for walking into a convenience store and Walgreens. One person did ask what happened to me. Otherwise, it was like I didn't look like blood was covering my entire body and like someone hadn't of beat the hell out of my face.
Anyway, I ended up having to go to a plastic surgeon about six months later. They had to remove a chunk of glass from my eyelid and to smooth the scars, I got microdermabrasion treatments, which are awesome.
That day changed my life. I learned that when you ride with a heavy book bag in your lap and use keychains on the zippers, one might hit you in the eye if you're in a car accident, giving you an additional black eye. I'm a very cautious driver now, greatly because of that. I listen to my gut when it says to stay home. Usually. There are no doubts in my mind that that day was the first of many major triggers for my anxiety. I was always an anxious person, but triply so after the accident. I got some cool scars out of it too. The scars have healed nicely and they aren't terribly noticeable anymore. Only the one where the gash was is apparent and even then, not a lot.
If you read this entire post, bravo. I didn't realize it would be so long.
Below are some pictures of my face the day after the accident. Pretty, huh?