I left the barn that morning like many others, rushing to get things done so that I could get to the office on time. I rarely had time to change from my barn clothes or breeches and showed up many days with hay in my hair and mismatched socks. My boss had come to accept my appearance but would occasionally ask me if I ever looked in a mirror that morning. It was a valid question.
The light turned green and all the cars proceeded to move. Another car and I were waiting to turn left as the light changed to yellow. That car went and I started to turn, as I was already in the intersection. I saw the large SUV charging through the intersection, running his red light, at me. I remember screaming “Noooooooo!” and braced for the impact.
I came-to surrounded by some smoke (my air bag deployed) and was extremely disoriented. Someone was outside of my car and they were signaling to me to confirm that I was ok. My car was not facing the original direction I had been going. The wind had been knocked out of me and I could barely move. Suddenly I heard Kara’s voice. The ambulance was on its way. She had been in line behind me, also on her way to the office. Although at the time, I was too incoherent to understand why she was there.
By the time I was taken for x-rays, I was more aware of my surroundings. Much to my complete humiliation, I am addressed by a doctor who is not only drop dead gorgeous, but who was a regular customer at the feed store. Great. I was not prepared to be in front of this man in my underwear. Well, I’m sure he’s seen far worse.
Nothing was broken. I was being discharged. The front of the car and my knees had collided and I could barely walk. And obviously, I had whiplash. I was given crutches and told to go home. Geesh. Can’t a girl get a wheelchair to get to my car? That’s a no. Ted took me home and I loaded up on pain killers and slept.
My car was totaled. My cell phone had been thrown so hard in the crash that it was no longer functioning. My glasses broke when the airbag deployed. I was grateful to not have more severe injuries and to be alive, but I hurt and had a very limited range of motion due to the pain in my hips. My insurance company called me to follow up on my recovery. I was surprised to hear that physical therapy or chiropractic would be covered if I was still having trouble. I was no stranger to chiropractic from my previous falls and didn’t waste time scheduling an appointment.
More x-rays were taken to confirm that the doc wasn’t going to be adjusting broken bones. My hips were black and blue and my whole body ached. I was so ready to be put back together again. Dr. B was amazed that my femurs or pelvis had not broken on impact. He worked up a plan to help me gain mobility consisting of adjustments and massage therapy.
Next up was car shopping. Ted picked out a red 2004 Trailblazer. It was reasonably priced and a nice vehicle, but I didn’t want a gas guzzler. None of the vehicles I picked were of his liking. Due to the repeated trading in on past vehicles, we were extremely upside down on my car loan and had to carry over an embarrassing amount to the new loan. Top that off with an 18% interest rate due to bad credit, we were approved for a loan that was almost double the value of the SUV.
Two weeks later, as I was falling asleep in bed, Ted announced he wanted a divorce. My response was not one of a broken-hearted wife begging her husband to reconsider and not leave her. I was absolutely furious that he made me buy the Trailblazer all while knowing he was planning to leave. He refused to tell me who his new love interest was because he didn’t want me to hate her. My tears were a combination of fear, anger, and betrayal. I had given this marriage so many attempts and this was the final breaking point. I truly believe that God, exasperated, took the reins and said “Here let me just do this for you”.
I called my mother to break the news. Where was I going to go? What was I going to do? While I know I was always welcome to come back home, it just wasn’t where I wanted to be. I had built a life in Pennsylvania, with my horse and amazing friends. I would figure out a way.
I slept on the couch that night because I was not sleeping next to Ted. Shock came over me when he came down the stairs not even 12 hours after telling me he wanted a divorce, looking as if he was off to go have the best day of his new life. He walked over to kiss me on the head and said he was heading to breakfast with some friends. I’ll just let you fill in the narrative happening in my head at that moment.
My new life was about to begin with $30,000 in student loans, $12,000 in credit card debt, an overpriced car loan, and $30 in my bank account.
Catch up on past blogs!
I could feel it in my soul.
Man’s Best Friend
I was stronger than I thought.
I burst into tears and could barely control my sobbing. I couldn’t find the words to summarize quickly the state of my life and frankly, how would anyone believe me?