just another day. headed to my sister's house to take a walk we've taken many times before. my parents were in town to help her through a husband-less week with her 4 babes and we wanted to celebrate fat tuesday with a pancake dinner. kevin was in the midwest for work, we were ready for valentine parties at school the next day.
as we headed toward the playground on scooters, going south on the safe residential sidewalk, my sweet niece rode her scooter through a cross street without stopping for adult approval. eve paused long enough to say 'mommy i bet you're proud of me for being safe.' i assured her i was very proud.
one block later my eve was a house length ahead of me on her scooter when a pick-up truck headed down the street decided to hop into reverse and swing backwards into the driveway my little baby was scooting past.
in slow motion i remember my dad saying something under his breath about the driver. i have a split second of memory thinking he was worried about nothing. i didn't see what he saw. i didn't see what was about to happen. i could have never imagined it.
eve even saw him coming at the last second she hopped off her scooter to start backwards as i ran screaming down the street. the kind of scream that a neighbor cringes to hear. the scream of a terrified mother worried about losing the most precious gift she has ever been trusted to love. as i watched her tumble under the car my mind went white. i was clawing at my dad screaming 'call 911' so loudly i think it was nearly silent.
i climbed under the car to find her. she was trapped beneath the running pick-up truck with the metal bar of her scooter pinning her to the sidewalk. she couldn't breathe but she could scream. it was the hardest worst saddest scariest longest shortest minutes of my life. i couldn't stop the truck. i couldn't get her out from underneath.
i couldn't protect her but god did. he held her safely in the palm of his hand while the world tumbled around her. the accident was not a surprise to him and he held her tight and most of all SAFE.
once we freed the scooter from its wedged spot under the car, i clawed my way to her and i pulled her onto my lap shaking. i laid on my back on the pavement with her on top, too scared to look at her face to see where the blood was coming from. not ready to know if her face would ever look the same. if her physical body was changed forever. just holding her spirit i found myself praying out loud rocking on the sidewalk.
as the ambulance came the realization that i had two other children watching this horrible moment hit me hard. i saw them down the block being loved by my dad, mom and sister and i was immensely grateful that if i couldn't stop their tears, they were with the people that love them just like i do.
the ride to the hospital. the x-rays. c-collars. MRI's. pain management. retelling the one visual i wanted to completely forget over and over for each new professional who entered our room. how can a memory soften and have grace when you have to remind yourself every hour? hearing that cry. remembering the panic. my shaking hands. her beating heart.
today she is healthy and in good spirits. she has a skull fracture and three vertebrae fractures. we will know more and we will manage it.
us? kevin and i have our eve. my girls have their sister. we are the luckiest people in town. we have spent the last two days wrapped in the love and prayers of our friends in a way i never imagined possible. we are blessed.