Our 21-year-old daughter was in a terrible car accident on Tuesday afternoon. Two days later, I’m still feeling quite shaken. She immediately sent me photos of our totaled car, and my mind simply cannot comprehend how it is she is still alive. But she’s doing well: very sore all over, especially her neck, and one shin is really bruised after it hit the dash and will be pretty colors in a few days. Luckily she works in a doctor’s office and has been advised on how to treat her neck. All is well.
This is what happened: Eve was on the freeway at a dangerous area where two freeways converge (the 101, and the 202 in Mesa). In your mind, picture cars going 70 mph and then turning a corner to find traffic completely stopped. Eve was stopped in a middle lane and in her rear view mirror, saw a car speeding toward her, the driver’s face pointed at her lap. Eve whispered, “Please don’t hit me, please don’t hit me,” then WHAM! Eve was pushed into the car in front of her, and that car crashed into the car in front of them. Nobody was very injured (again, THANK YOU, UNIVERSE for this miracle). Hubby took care of the whole thing since when I am in the classroom, I have my phone silenced and try to stay focused on our students.
Today Hubby and I went to the garage where the police had towed Eve’s car. She was at work, and we needed to gather her belongings before what was left of our 2010 Prius went to auction for parts. The nice young man silently led us to the lot of totaled cars. We rounded a corner, and I saw it. I gasped and tears came to my eyes. How did my girl survive this??? The front end was completely collapsed and crumpled, and it was hard to open the passenger door. The airbag had deployed, and the dash and window were cracked. Tears trickled down my face as we quietly gathered Eve’s stuff from the Prius, which she always called her “spaceship” and which now she is saying “gave her life for me.”
Eve and Hubby seem fine, however, I feel traumatized. We would drive ourselves insane if every day we got out of bed and considered all of the dangers lurking outside the front door, or if we thought about the bad driving (AZ is one of the worst states for aggressive drivers), or focused on random gun violence. How can you live your life if you wake up and think, will someone I love be hurt today? We are wired to shut out the negative so that we can be productive and happy in our days. I know all of this. BUT: This week, I’m feeling fragile and shaken and afraid. Overall I am completely in awe that our Eve walked away from that heap of twisted metal with only bumps and bruises, and by next week, I 100% know I will be feeling normal again. Pondering mortality is not something I’m comfortable with at this point in my life. But today? I’m feeling raw.
Here is the good news: I’m listening to Emmylou Harris, sipping tequila, and making soup. I had a bin of “veg on the verge” so I threw it all in a pot with some chicken shmaltz and veggie stock where it is bubbling optimistically on my stove top. You can’t mess up soup—if it tastes weird, you can always save it by adding a pinch of this or a snip of that. Words of Wisdom from Yours Truly: “Soup can always be saved, and Soup will always Save You.” TRUTH. Soup is buoying! When you’re down, the homey flavors that evoke memories of Grandma’s kitchen will lift you up, body and soul. Same truth with Emmylou and tequila . . . (except not the Grandma’s kitchen part–Grandma was a Midwestern Methodist and teetotaler, excepting for a sip of sweet wine at special occasions like weddings and graduations).
Thanks for listening.