Today was supposed to be the day I went to the MVA to drop off the old truck tags. It was also supposed to be a day of meandering through the baby clothes, picking up a couple more sweet little outfits for the new baby as well as finding some comfy sandals for Harper. But, things just didn’t quite work out that way.
I was on my way out to Columbia when my phone rang. Tony was calling me from work, which isn’t unusual, but when he asked if I had talked to Zoe, I knew immediately that something was up. He told me she had been trying to text me to tell me that she had been in a car accident. Again.
Her normal ride to school was running late this morning, so she asked a boy from our old neighborhood if he’d mind giving her a ride in to school. He obliged, and they were off. Zoe said she told the boy that she thought he was driving too fast (the roads were wet this morning), and that he slowed down, but only a little. They were attempting to change lanes when the driver ahead of them also attempted to change lanes, so he switched back, as did the other driver. At that point he lost control of his car and ran into the guardrail. Zoe said he hit one side and the car spun around hitting the other side and tail end, and then came to a stop with their tail end pointed towards the highway, nose to the guardrail.
No one stopped to help them. Not the lady who was driving ahead of them and had to have seen what happened, not a single person who was behind them. Zoe even said they saw a few cops drive by without a second glance. They called 911 and a police car was dispatched to the scene where he asked a few questions and then left. (Zoe said he asked her name and date of birth. That’s it.) I’m unclear as to what happened to the car, but I know that the boy called his mom and she picked him up from the scene. Stupidly, Zoe decided to call her original ride and asked her to pick her up and take her the rest of the way to school. She had hit her head on the window and felt pain when she turned her head too quickly, but still thought she was ok enough to head on to school. No calling me or her dad, but some other kid to get her to school. What the hell?
We’ve been through this “who do you call if you’re in trouble” thing a million times, but she clearly doesn’t get it. So, 2 1/2 hours after the incident, I get a call from Tony telling me about this. She’d gone on to school, albeit 2 hours late, and only then did she finally text me. My phone was in my bag and I was getting ready to leave the house so I didn’t even know about the text. I always put my phone in my bag before I leave because it’s much less tempting to use while I’m in the car if it’s a pain to get to.
I was half way to Columbia but I just took the closest exit and turned right around to get her from school. I had to see her and make sure she was okay. Texting just doesn’t do it for me. I was pretty calm and collected as I explained to the school receptionist and then school nurses as to why I was there. They couldn’t believe that she was even at school and that I was just finding out about the accident. When she finally got into the nurses office, I lost it. I guess I am able to stay strong for so long, and then when I see things are ok, that’s when the flood gates open. I was a little embarrassed to be sobbing in the nurses office with all the staff and “sick” kids looking on, but I just couldn’t control myself.
The nurses were very understanding, and let me have my moment. After that, I signed her out and pretty much decided that I’d have to take her to the ER to get her head checked out. I brought Harper home and my mother-in-law stayed with him while I brought her.
The doctor examined her and said she didn’t think there was any serious damage, and no concussion. She said we need to keep an eye on her and wake her every 2 hours tonight and quiz her on her name, day of the week and location just to make sure she’s coherent. We also have to monitor her walking and overall wellness for the next 24 hours, just to be sure all is well.
I can’t even put into words how grateful I am that this ended the way it did. This is Zoe’s second major car accident, and I’m not so sure I can take much more of this “excitement'”. I think it’s time she go back to riding the bus in the morning, and I think I’m going to have to ask her to only drive by herself for awhile too. I know accidents are going to happen and I can’t control everything Zoe does forever, but I also know that things could have turned out quite differently this morning. I’m just so incredibly thankful that she’s okay. She the only Zoe I’ve got, and I sure don’t want to lose her.