Time was rocking on, as it is bound to do. I’d been to Homecoming at the University and introduced Mother to my “new” car. I didn’t say anything until she got in the passenger’s seat. When I did, she was surprised because she thought it was the old Caddy. The only thing similar was the color. The Caddy was easily twice as big and in terrible shape. Mother liked the prestige of saying her baby daughter had a Cadillac, I guess. She was nice about the Civic, though. Her one remark? The dash seemed closer.
We toured the countryside and I took her to visit her grandsons. She was impressed with DS2’s acreage and large house. Then it was to DS1’s apartment where she was shocked at how much her newest great-granddaughter had grown. Some months before, she had met her for the first time and proudly held her while their picture was taken:
She said what she always said when she saw a baby: “Honey, you have no idea what’s ahead of you.” In that regard, the child could join the rest of us.
I certainly didn’t know what was ahead of me.
The Business Office Manager, or BOM for short, was going with a group to participate in a class where they were learn the wonders of Windows 3.1. One of the people who had signed up had to drop out and she selected me to fill that slot. We were packed like sardines into a vehicle and it was a miserable two hour trip each way. What’s more, the instructor seemed to think we should already know what she was teaching us. She’d zoom the pointer around the screen and click click click in rapid succession. I couldn’t follow what she was doing. No one else could, either. On the way home, we agreed we could read the material and get about as much on our own as we did that day.
I think the BOM was under the impression I carried a lot more weight (figuratively) than I did. She seemed to cater to me, somewhat, and was pretty hard on the others.
One cold winter morning, I had to scrape the ice off the car before I could go anywhere. I carefully removed it from all the windows I’d need to see through and pulled out of the driveway after having my usual prayer that God would keep me safe.
At the first intersection after pulling onto the highway, a car was stopped. There was maybe a six inch hole in the ice for the driver to see ahead but the side windows were still completely covered. I wasn’t more than 15 feet away from the car when it pulled out directly in front of me. I shouted, “NO!!” but the driver didn’t hear me. I turned the steering wheel as far to the right as I could but there was still a sickening thud and the hood of my car buckled. The bowl of soup I’d carefully covered to take for my lunch landed in the floor on the passenger’s side and broke in two. The little car didn’t have airbags but I’d slowed when I first saw the car on the side road so I didn’t think I was hurt.
People appeared from out of nowhere. There was a little store across the street and I suppose that’s where they were. Someone called for a State Trooper and I was still sitting, dazed, in the driver’s seat when he came to my window. He asked if I were okay and I mumbled something. He was amazed there wasn’t more damage. I told him I’d slowed as much as I could in the amount of time I had. I’d hit the car’s back door.
He had me start my car and pull it off the road so nothing would plow into me. Then he took my statement and the statement of the driver of the other car. The woman was taking two children to school and, apparently, none of them were hurt. She did have insurance and she assured me she would notify her insurance company.
If I had been alone or with someone I knew, I would have been in tears but I held it in. I was crying inside. My lovely little car was wounded!
The trooper was going to call a wrecker to come after my car but I asked him to get in touch with the man at the station where I’d bought the Caddy. He did and my friend brought his car hauler and loaded my poor little wreck. I rode back to the station with him. I huddled in the corner of the cab and tried to sort out my thoughts.
Fortunately, it wasn’t long distance to the hospital from his station. (It was from my house and it was four tenths of a mile away.) I called and told my co-workers I’d had a wreck. They’d been concerned when I hadn’t shown up for work. One of them came out to get me. When I got in the car with her, I lost it. I started crying in earnest.
I didn’t know what I was going to do. I had to have transportation. My budget didn’t allow for me to be off work for an extended period of time. True, I had vacation time built up but I didn’t want to use it all at one whack. I prayed and prayed for some kind of resolution to the problem.
As soon as I walked in the door, the BOM insisted I should go to the emergency room. I was an obedient employee so that’s what I did. The doctor on call was my primary care physician and he made sure I was going to live. I was x-rayed and he informed me nothing was broken (I didn’t think anything was) but, even though I was feeling okay as far as my body was concerned, he predicted I would be very sore. He wrote an order for me to be off for three days, minimum.
How was I going to get home? The BOM put me in her car and took me. She apologized for the dog hair covering, literally, everything. To tell you the truth, I wouldn’t have noticed it if she hadn’t said anything. I had other things on my mind. She wanted to come in and get me settled but I told her that wouldn’t be necessary. I wanted to be left alone with my thoughts.
How was I going to cope with this new situation? Only God knew and He wasn’t saying anything, I thought…