Sometimes we forget just how precious life it...until God makes you have a wake up call.
My dear friend, Jessica, who has a son with Asperger's Syndrome and who is a great support for me when I need it most could have died last Sunday. She was riding in the backseat of a car when the driver lost control and the car flipped over several times. She was ejected from the car.
When I went to the hospital Monday, nothing could have prepared me for what I was about to see. No one should ever have to see a loved one in that condition. Her husband, my wonderful friend Aquino, showed me pictures to prepare me. I sat in the waiting room and cried. As I walked down the hallway to her room, the tears fell harder. As I entered her room, I could barely see. It's a good thing because the sight of her in the bed was so bad.
Fractured occipital bone, 3 broken ribs, fractured vertebrae, fractured sternum, severed bottom lip and tongue, her entire body swollen 10x the size it should be, her face badly bruised. She laid there, eyes swollen shut, barely conscious...she looked like she was not alive. She had a breathing tube in and a tube to remove the stuff from her lungs. It was bloody and gross.
I kissed her forehead and I left, not knowing if she was going to get better or not. Seeing my friend Aquino in such a fragile state was heartbreaking. He just wanted his wife to be ok and to come back to him.
I could barely sleep that night. I kept picturing her in the bed, not moving. Every time I closed my eyes, that's all I could see.
By Thursday, the breathing tube was out and a feeding tube was in. She got up and walked to the bathroom! Miracles do happen. She came back to us. I went to see her that day and she looked so much better than she did Monday. Her eyes were partly opened and she could muster out a few words. I went back in today, Friday, and she was doing even better. She said that she may get out of ICU in the next few days! I told her how bad it was on Monday and she said that other people said the same thing. I'm just so amazed at how well she is doing.
Since Monday though, I am terrified to be in the car. Every time I look in the rearview mirror, I think that a car coming up behind me could kill me. It's nerve-wracking but it's ok. Maybe we all needed a wake-up call.