I am thankful for...lots of things, especially this year. Mostly for the fact that Cole is such a sweet, dear person. He had to write what he was especially thankful for this year in school.
He wrote, "I am especially thankful that my Bubbie is feeling better from her car accident."
(Bubbie is my mom) I was overwhelmed with pride, amazement and sadness that he thought enough about her ordeal to put it on paper.
In May 2008, my mom was involved in a "freak accident" as many refer to it. That day, an hour before it happened, I actually ran into her coincidentially. I was working with my manager that day. We were heading into a doctor's office to bring them lunch. My mom was just leaving her appointment in that same office. I introduced my boss to my mom, we laughed about what a small world it was. My mom was then off to get her hair colored, her once-every-three-weeks ritual to keep her grey roots from appearing.
The day went on, and because my boss was in my car, my cell phone was turned off till 5:30 p.m. Once we parted ways, I checked my phone to find about seventeen missed calls from my sister, Marcy. Something was up. My heart pounded as I spoke to her.
"Are you driving?" Marcy inquired.
"Yes, just tell me, what is it?"
"Pull over." she demanded. I was relieved she wasn't crying, so at that moment, I knew no one was dead, because I knew she would have been hysterical if it had been something totally horrific.
"No, just tell me." I stammered, still a little scared for what would come next.
"Mom was hit by a car today." she stated calmly.
"Hit by a car?" It didn't make sense since she drives everywhere.
Long story short, mom was sitting in the chair at the same beauty salon she has been loyal to for the past 25 years, processing with color on her hair, reading a book. A woman who was going to park and head in to get her nails done, allegedly confused the brake and gas and ran her Range Rover through a celing to floor glass wall, through a stuccoed 3/4 wall, hitting my mom, who was sitting on the other side and another woman, and kept driving 25 feet to the back wall of the salon. My mom and the other woman were pinned under the Range Rover, holding hands. The paramedics came and had to use airbags to lift the Range Rover up, so they could pull out my mom and the other woman.
The other woman's injuries were minor and she left the hospital and attended a baseball game that night, we heard. My mom had three fractured ribs, sixteen stitches on her shin and a severe contusion on her eyelid, which called for a very young plastic surgeon to work for three hours hours on the eye. We joked this was one way of getting an eye lift, although it wasn't cosmetic whatsoever. The driver walked away with a few scratches.
"Go home and feed your children dinner. I'm fine" she stated when I arrived at the hospital. After trying to remove the many tiny shards of glass and pieces of drywall from her hair, it was obvious that someone had to be the advocate here, and it was going to be me. As long as I could remain bossy to the doctors and the hospital staff, insisting they replace drugs that were not on their formulary with ones that were less sedating, constipating and other awful side effects, I was not upset. I knew that she would recover and that her injuries were not life threatening, and that made the whole thing less troubling for me.
Mom on morphine and other opioids was memorable. Calling the plastic surgeon, "Doogie Houser", because he looked like he was twelve years old was one classic moment. Yelling at uninvited, nosy, psychotic family members, to "GET THE FU%# OUT!" when they came to visit her out of sheer curiosity was another hysterical incident.
Her attitude throughout this whole ordeal has been, "Hey, I'm still alive." This is insanely heroic and realistic and I admire this outlook immensely. Although she is experiencing some post-trumatic stress at the six month mark here, her progress has been surprisingly accelerated.
I, like Cole am beyond thankful that my mom is still here to celebrate Thanksgiving and every other upcoming holiday and just because it's Wednesday and she is still around.