Do you ever wonder why you have to experience some events in your life, good or bad? What I am about to tell you is a true
story about what happened to me and my husband on Saturday, November 26th.
It was an ordinary Saturday. My husband and I had been to a family members home for a small party. There had been mention, a few days prior to this event, that we might drive separately so he could stay longer. However, that idea became obsolete when the radiator in my car blew up the day before the party. Not thinking much of it, the car was towed late Friday night, to an auto repair shop thought to still be keeping Saturday hours. Alas, that assumption was wrong and it was now apparent that I was not to get my car back until the following Monday at the earliest. Okay, so it was predetermined that we would make the 45 minutes trek to the party together. When it was time to leave we said our goodbyes and got in the car. After a 10 minute drive to the freeway entrance I should have realized something was wrong. Now that I reflect back on our conversation, I realize he seemed to be agreeing with me more than usual at the standard chatter that usually annoyed him. Still not giving it a second thought, my husband interrupts me to say he isn’t feeling so well and he thinks it best we take the next exit and find a gas station. Not becoming alarmed, I strain to look for any signs of a a rest stop as we continue up the exit ramp to street level. You can imagine the relief when I see a lovely red Arco sign to my right. Thinking we are going to be “in time” for whatever emergency is about to happen I tell my husband to turn right and then immediately get into the far left hand lane so as not to miss the turn into the station. Everything is fine. He makes the right turn, but then doesn’t get over. I repeat the instructions in a more panicked tone, but as soon as I finish that statement the car’s right front tire mounts the curb but just as quickly returns to the street. At this point all alarms are sounding in my head and I yell, “Where the Hell are you going?” My husband says, in a very calm but small voice, “I don’t know“….and then he passes out! Keep in mind HE is driving and we are going about 40 miles an hour right now, without a conscious driver! Panic is setting in like I have never known and that is when the screaming starts. I am yelling for him to wake up. I shake him, and within a nanosecond I know he isn’t coming to anytime soon. He is a scary shade of pale and completely unconscious. The next thing I remember saying is… “Ohmigod!” The next thing I remember thinking is… “I’m not going to die tonight.” I grab the wheel and try to steer the car away from the oncoming traffic we are getting too close to. My mind is going a thousand miles a second and I know I have to get my foot on the brake and his foot off the gas! Forgetting that I have a seat belt on, I try to get out my seat but that doesn’t work, obviously. Thankfully I am somewhat calm enough to press the release button and fling it off my body. Now, the car is a small Scion TC and it has bucket seats and a middle console. Are you picturing this? I’m only 5′-1″ but thankfully my husband has a good 9-10 inches on me and doesn’t have to sit too close to the steering wheel. I am able to get my butt up and onto the flat part of the middle console and then swing my left leg and foot up, over and then down into area of the gas and break pedals. I am desperately searching with my left foot for the brake and manage to find it, only to realize, that pressing on it won’t stop the car because my husband’s foot has become a dead weight. The sound of the engine accelerating reminds me that unless I can get his foot off the gas…we’re dead. I really don’t know what our top speed was during all of this, but I am pretty sure it was more than 50 mph. I reach down with my left hand and start groping for his foot. Somehow, I managed to catch the hem of his jeans and am able to yank his foot off the gas pedal. At the same time I am pretty much standing on the brake and the car comes to a screeching sideways halt in the median section of this six lane road. Both of us are thrown forward, but he never wakes up. At this point relief has totally flooded over me. The car is stopped. I am not blocking any lanes of traffic and there are minimal cars going in both ours and the opposite direction. I know I have to get us off the street and as luck would have it, even though we had already passed the Arco station, there is a Circle K no more than a few feet to our left. Using my left foot I slowly press on the gas and am able to turn into the parking lot and steer into a spot in front of the building. It was a bad parking job, as I never fully made it up to the curb, but I really didn’t friggin care! At this point my husband has regained consciousness and is wondering why I am practically sitting on top of him while straddling the console. I scream at him, “You blacked out!” I am still screaming this as I jump out of the car and run around to the driver’s side. Here’s the interesting part about all this. I guarantee it took you longer to read up to this point than in the time it actually happened….10 seconds. Longest ten seconds of my life. At this point though, my poor husband is just oblivious to everything except my hysterics and is now telling ME to calm down.
The night pretty much went down hill from there. Oh, we are all fine by the way, but he blacked out again on the way to the hospital and I had to pull over and call for an ambulance. It was a scary night and at one point I really thought I might lose him. Now, go back to my original question at the beginning of this story. “Ever wonder why you have to experience some events in your life, good or bad?” See, if my car hadn’t broken down the day before, there is a really good chance that I wouldn’t have been in the car. As the “what-ifs” run rampant in your head like they did mine, you can only imagine the outcome. I thank my lucky stars for how it all transpired that Saturday night. I know that “Everything happens for a reason.” I was suppose to be there. Someone, made sure I was going to be in that car with him and I know Angels were with us that night. Too many things have happened in my life to not chalk it up to a higher power. Sometimes you don’t understand what your purpose in life is, but maybe mine was to save him. I’ve calmed down now, but my photographic/movie memory keeps hitting instant replay. I see it all and hear it all as if it just happened. You never know how you are going to react in time of crisis, but I hope I passed this test.