It happened so fast, the screeching of the tires, the large thump of the impact to the deer. The smell of the powder pouring over me and my family from the air bags. My first thought was my children. I prayed dear God please let them be ok. I felt the rush of relief when I began to get the sounds of their voices and both frighten replied “We are ok”. I could hear the shaking in their voices as they were asking what happened. I tried hard to clear my head and think, while feeling like someone took their best shot with me and punched me directly in the middle of my chest. I finally focused on the sound of my husband’s voice, hearing him say “’stay there, don’t get out of the car”.
I tried to slow my breathing and take as many deep breaths as my body would allow. I could hear the whizzing of the cars as they flew past us at top speeds. The road is dark with very few street lights, coming up on the accident would be easy to miss it. A few cars barely missed the wrecked tangled mess of what use to be my car. I thought to myself “is it ok to shed a tear for your car”? I wanted to just sit down in the tall grass on the side of the road and cry. I wanted to let all the emotions that were running through my body, out and feel better like I do after a good cry. But I wasn’t able to shed a tear or be afraid because I could see the small eyes of my children looking up at me, wondering if I was ok. I knew that the children would play off of my emotions and if I was calm and relaxed, then they could be ok too. In their minds, mommy’s reactions to events played an important role in their reactions. I took another painful deep breath and told the children, in my best big girl voice, “we are all ok. Let’s take deep breaths together and feel our bodies relax”. I watched both kids take the deepest breathes their little bodies would allow. I then saw the smiles on their faces and their body, especially their shoulders, relax.
I was hoping soon the police and fire would be there to control the passing cars and we could start our journey home. I longed for a hot shower, to wash the smell of the air bags off me. I wanted to get home and find a little hole to climb into and let the tears flow. But I would have to wait, sending those emotions back deep inside myself. Sooner or later, the moment would come when I was alone and would be allowed to cry. Cry that we were in an accident, cry for the deer, cry that the children where a part of it, and of course cry for my dear little car, Betty Boop.
The scene turned from a dark, one car accident to a large, almost circus like, arena. There was flashing lights of the police car arriving and a large fire truck. There were two ambulances that came to the scene with a flurry of lights and sounds. It almost seemed too much for a one car accident and a lone, dead deer. But not more than five minutes prior to the arrival of all the first responders, did I hear my husband on his cell phone demanding the presence of all these cars and trucks. I knew he was more than mad at the dispatcher on the phone when I hear him say loudly “I’m a Denver Police Officer in an accident and my family needs help”. Once I heard my husband speak in that voice, the voice he could command an army with it, I knew more help would be on its way. I say more help because having my husband there with me, I felt safe the moment it all unfolded, knowing Eric was right next to me, because of his ability to remain calm and collected in a storm of emotions and not react like most americans would. He is definitely someone I wold want on my side in a war.
Things started to calm down and there were first responders that were casually standing around, occasionally letting out a smile or a laugh, I could feel my whole body start to relax, even with the pain in my chest. I spoken to the paramedics and convinced them that I was more concerned with the effect the accident had on my children’s body. After being convinced not once, bur twice that the children were safe, I started to relax and was able to assess the situation a little better. My first thought was how were we going to get home since the only car we owned was now in pieces in the highway. Also I was going over, step by step, the minutes before the accident. Was there something I could have done to not hit the deer? Was I going to fast? I needed to talk to my husband and ask him if I had done something wrong. I needed to know that I did everything in my power correctly. I don’t know why that was so important to me but it just was at that moment. I also feared I would be getting a ticket. I don’t know why, but I was sure I did do something wrong, even after speaking with the officer, and he assured me that I was not at fault. Since it was just me and the deer that entered the fighting ring together, only one could come out alive. Thank God it wasn’t my time to be defeated.
Today is worse than last night and that’s what I was told it would be like from the paramedics. This wasn’t my first time being in a car accident, never with a deer before though. I ache from head to toe but mostly in the center of my body, from my neck to my stomach. The entire area that was impacted from the airbag and seatbelt. And thank goodness each of us where wearing our seatbelts. I couldn’t imagine if any one of us wasn’t wearing it. I’m sure the situation would be a lot different today besides a few bruises and sore muscles.0