So following the birth of my son, time went by rather quickly. May hit, then June, then July…and on July 4, 2008, my sister had been invited to a birthday party for a friend, who had children, and asked me to come along. However, the night before, I’d had a nightmare that I’d gotten into an accident, and I told her I didn’t want to drive. Gypsy, who had been extremely possessive and controlling throughout this time, refused to let me leave the house at all without someone else with me, and counted my mileage, etc etc…said I couldn’t go. I asked him to come with me, he said no. He also said I could not bring my son with me. My sister said it was fine, and that she would drive me to the party if I made it to her house off HWY 79.
Well, a mile away from her house, there was a merge lane. I was going about 65-70 MPH, (speed limit – for once) and merged into the lane to my left….but my steering wheel locked and wouldn’t straighten afterwards. I was still going left. I went partially off the road, and eventually had to yank my steering wheel to the right in order to get back onto the road. I went back into the far right lane, and tried yet again to merge left. (Take note: at this point, I’d regained complete control of the car) But as I merged, the steering wheel just completely rolled to the left, stayed there, and locked in place. I went off the road. I don’t remember hitting the brakes hard enough for the rear tires to dig into the ground. I don’t remember screaming loudly with my mouth so wide open that the air bag powder filled my lungs. I don’t remember being on the phone with Gypsy. All I remember is seeing a pole in front of the car, blinking, and then waking up in the front seat. I’d hit a “No U-Turn” sign in the median, going 70MPH. (Well, less than that. The cop told me that if I hadn’t hit my brakes, the sign would’ve split my car in half and killed me)
In my mind, it was 2006 – before my enlistment. Before Gypsy, Ruby and Priest. Before everything. I believed myself to be sitting in my sister’s car (it was, after all, hers before it was mine). I looked around the car, trying to find the old Nokia Tracfone I’d had in high school. I found a Nextel PTT phone instead. I didn’t recognize it, and I didn’t recognize half the numbers in there, even though I remembered some of the people.
If I don’t know these numbers, or this phone…what else do I have wrong? Where am I? Why am I in my sister’s car? Where was I going? Was I running from something?
I looked in the back seat and saw the base for the car seat. I have a son. I REMEMBERED MY SON! But who was his father? I couldn’t remember. Where was my son? I suddenly realized that it was not 2006. I was not 17. I didn’t know the year, or how old I was. I started to get worried. Suddenly, the phone *bleeped* and there was a strange voice coming from it. I pushed the button on the side and tried to speak, but all that came out of my mouth was a huge scream as a puff of white powder *poofed* out around me. Within seconds, my door was opened, and someone had dragged me out of the car onto the ground. I held myself up on my hands and knees, trying to cough out the rest of the powder. Suddenly, two hands grabbed me, swung me around, slammed me on my back and gripped my neck.
“I’m a nurse from UAB! You could have a serious spinal injury! Don’t move! EMS is on the way!” The woman said. She was white, and looked to be about in her 50’s, with short, blonde hair. She was wearing scrubs.
“I’m fine! Let me up! I can’t breath!” I yelled, but to no avail. I then realized that someone had had my phone.
“Call my sister!” I yelled, “It’s her car! CALL MY SISTER!”
They called her. She was on her way. I looked to my right. Was that my mother? Wait! Where are you going? She was already gone. I heard my sister. EMS was there. They were trying to ask questions, my sister tried to answer. The UAB nurse wouldn’t let her. I screamed at the nurse to let my sister in. Let her talk! I called the nurse a bitch. I screamed for my big sister. She got there, looking worried. I started to calm down. I began to joke, “How’s the car?” I laughed, and she took a few photos.
Suddenly, I’m in the ambulance, the medics are asking me questions. I joked a little bit. Did I pass out? We’re at the hospital. Gypsy was there. I suddenly remembered who he was, but I felt like I was supposed to remember something else. Something much more important. My sister was there. I was on a stretcher. I tried to move a little bit to adjust my head off that uncomfortable knot at the top of the neck brace. My neck popped uncomfortably and went hot. I felt a tear go down the side of my face. My sister left. The hospital forgot I was there, I was on the stretcher for 6 hours total (Again, Gulf Coast Medical Center’s got you covered!)
Eventually, they X-rayed my neck, upper spine, and left shoulder. It was all sprained. I had to go home in a gown because they’d cut my tank top off (didn’t I make a topless joke with that medic? I don’t remember, I’m sure I did…I do that). I went home, and it took me about 2 weeks to catch up the last 2 years of memories entirely, including the job interview at Winn-Dixie which was supposed to have been the day after my accident. (Oops. Sorry, Stacy!)..And I remembered that I was still trying to find a way out of Gypsy’s house, and had just lost everything that could have helped me.
Happy Independence Day….