Yesterday afternoon I was headed to the store, minding my own business, lost in a world of thoughts.
I was about 20-30 feet from an intersection when I saw out of the corner of my eye, a vehicle that was not slowing down for the stop sign.
From that second on I felt like I was in some type of slow motion movie where sounds are muted and everyone and everything is moving in slow motion with very exaggerated movements and facial contortions.
I saw (but do not remember hearing) the two SUVs collide. The one that was hit, flew into the air several feet (in a movie like slow motion pace - it seems) and then landed on its side.
I pulled my vehicle over and grabbed my phone to dial 911.
If you know me, you know that I am a hyper type person. I get excited and animated- easily. (I don't like that about me, but I've tried to change it and I can't.) Well, I was so rattled, I couldn't dial 9-1-1. I kept hitting 9-1-2 or 9-2-2.
By this time I was on the side walk wondering what to do. Then I saw the billows of smoke coming out of the vehicle that was on its side. My thought was- "get back~ this car is about to explode!"
Then, someone "unmuted" the sound in my head.
I heard a baby screaming. I can still hear the baby screaming.
My heart starting pounding in my ears and my hands started shaking more than they were when I was trying to dial 9-1-1.
I still felt like I was in a quagmire of slow motion force field. I moved, but not fast enough. I heard a man screaming and then I saw the blood. Another eye witness across the street had called 9-1-1.
My heart felt like it was going to stop beating. There wasn't just a little blood. It was pouring out of the driver's side window, that was face to face with the concrete, almost like someone was pouring soda out of a can. I ran to the back hatch to try to open it. It wouldn't budge. The doors were all caved in or blocked (the suv was on it's side). I was praying to Jesus to help me open the doors. The smoke kept billowing and the screams kept screaming.
When I came back around the vehicle a man had run up and was trying to get the kids also. He climbed on top of the vehicle, which was actually the passenger side. Where the other vehicle had hit this one, the back door had caved enough for him to slide down into. After frantically working with the car seat he got the first baby out and handed her to me.
It was then we heard the second set of cries! There was another baby in the car.
By that time, other people we coming to help.
I was worried about the daddy who was bleeding so badly. He was in shock, but had enough wits to realize we were worried about the car blowing up and knew his babies were in the vehicle. He shouted, "There's two! Get the girls!" I assured him we had both girls but encouraged him to put pressure where ever he was bleeding from. I kept talking to him while the man worked on getting to the other baby.
Our wonderful Police Chief pulled up by then (off duty, I might add. He's an extra miler.). The ambulance, squad cars and fire trucks were arriving. I never remember hearing a siren.
The professionals got the man out of the vehicle. His babies still crying, but in good hands with by standers. By this time I realized the car was not going to explode. It was just smoking from being hit. Every thing was under control and I stood there taking in the reality of what I had just witnessed~ all in muted silence. The world was in action around me and I was in a strange silent bubble.
(To make a long story short, the babies were fine, the other vehicle was fine, and I believe the dad will be ok. He did loose a lot of blood and will probably have to have several surgeries on his arm and leg.)
It wasn't until about an hour later that I emerged from the slow motion time warp thing and heard sounds and the same time I saw the action.
I'm still hearing the sounds.
The babies' screams.
The man's cries.
I'm still seeing the sights.
The baby shoes and bottle in the street.
By no means do I want to sensationalize an accident by blogging about it, but I am trying to process this.
After giving my statement, my vehicle was cornered in by several squad cars, ambulances and fire trucks, so I just stood there.
I noticed the little things.
~ The woman who ran the stop sign was in a dazed shock.
~ The light on her front fender was dangling and swinging- still.
~ The crimson trickle running down the street.
~ The pacifier on it's side in the red stuff.
~ The baby croc shoe - turquoise blue with little brown fur inside.
~ The pale skin of the man who had lost so much blood.
~ The swift confidence and professionalism of the civil servants involved.
I noticed the big things.
~ No one lost their life.
~ God has plans for all those babies involved. Their lives are precious to Him.
~ I was glad I had hugged and kissed my family that morning. There was a few seconds in the mayhem that I was not sure I would see them again in this life.
Today, I've made a mental note of the things I have learned:
~ Seat belts are important!
~Car seats ARE essential!
~Loose objects in a vehicle can be life threatening if in a wreck. The babies had a few bruises from flying objects.
~I.C.E. numbers should be in phones, diaper bags, purses, and glove boxes etc.
~Always be cautious. Even in the residential areas~ accidents- not just fender benders - do happen.
~ Eternity can be a second away. Choose now where you want to spend it!
~Take each moment you are given and never miss an opportunity to hug and kiss your family.
~Pray over your loved ones.
~Ask God to spare you from ever taking someone else's life.
Thanks for letting me process this. I am thankful for God's hand of protection, but you know what? I am also thankful for His sovereignty. He is a Faithful God!
Please make sure you make things right with Him ~ now.