Family Memoir

A Strange Situation

It was Christmas Eve, 1964. My husband and 3 sons had bought me a bicycle for the holidays and were putting it together in the basement. I had just pulled a fresh batch of Christmas cookies out of the oven and was getting ready to deliver them to our friends, who live just down the street. There was a beautiful snowstorm outside, with large flakes swirling and floating to the ground. It’s always nice to have a white Christmas; snow is so peaceful.

After delivering the cookies and chatting for awhile, I made my way back to the house. All of the sudden a car came flying around the corner. The roads were very slick due to the snowstorm, so as soon as I realized what was going on, it was too late. The other car hit mine and threw me into a ditch on the side of the road.

The world changed at that moment. I literally seemed to be floating in space with the beautiful snow falling all around me. I glanced down below me and there was my body, lying in the car covered in blood. I wasn’t upset or afraid or anything like that at all. But, as soon as I saw this, reality began to pull me back to my body. I could feel the blood streaming down my face, and my eyesight became very blurry.

That feeling, that out-of-body experienc e, has always stayed with me over the years. It makes me wonder where I went during those few moments. I felt so peaceful and calm. Being that detached from the world is unlike anything I’d ever felt before and anything I’ve felt since. I don’t know if that was just my way of coping with the pain and shock, but, whatever it was, it has stuck with me ever since. Looking down at my own body was such a different feeling; I don’t think I can ever recover from experiencing that. I also recall feeling very grateful for a brief moment after regaining consciousness, remembering all those beautiful snowflakes surrounding me.

          I didn’t leave the accident unscathed. My knees were torn and four of my ribs were broken. Surprisingly, my knees caused me more discomfort than my ribs, but that was probably due to the fact that a cage was placed around them during the healing process. I really didn’t mind the ribs too bad, unless someone made me laugh.

My son, Greg, actually witnessed th e accident. He was taking a walk and saw the wreck from where he was standing on top of a hill. He was alarmed, but he didn’t realize that it was me in the ditch until later. Funny how things happen like that, isn’t it?

I will always wonder about that incident, and remember the unfamiliar, yet peaceful feelings that overcame me when seeing my own body. I hope that you never get in a car accident, but if you ever experience that out-of-body feeling, I’m sure it won’t be something you will easily forget.

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Published on February 23, 2009 at 7:37 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I really liked this! I loved how you threw in the beauty of the snow beside the whole car wreck. It made for interesting reading, because they are two different things. You put some extra spaces between letters sometimes, but it was still really good.

  2. Very nice story! I enjoyed the beauty of the snowflakes as well. I think it may be a little repetitive in parts and I was wondering if maybe you could come up with a metaphor to discuss the unique feeling in a new and interesting way? It might freshen up the story a little bit.

    Great job!!!


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