just don’t do it…EVER October 11, 2011 – Posted in: Family
My life changed forever Sunday afternoon. We were having a fantastic weekend…it was the first time in months The Hubs had been around on the weekend and we were enjoying a blissful few days together as a family. He’d gone to work that morning, but came home mid-afternoon and we all loaded up in the car to hit the outlet mall for new cold-weather clothes.
We got 1.1 miles from our house, to the first major intersection, and we proceeded through the light on green. I was watching a movie on our center console and never saw the car coming. It came from the right, running the red light, and t-boned us on the passenger side, slamming our car into another SUV waiting to turn left.
There are parts of it I don’t remember. For me the whole accident is more like snapshots in my memory. I remember the movie, then I remember my arms flailing, I remember hitting the other car, glass shattering, then looking up at the traffic light. I remember the feeling of my head hitting the window, then my knee hitting the middle console. I “came to” and immediately grabbed my belly, thinking I was still pregnant. Then I heard the girls crying and I turned to see The Hubs already out of his seat belt, turned around and calming them, and I got my phone out and immediately called 911. Everyone else was already out of their cars and someone else was on the phone as well.
While I was on the phone with 911, a fire truck pulled up behind us, appearing out of thin air. It was about that time The Hubs started looking out the windows (instead of focusing on the girls) and noticed the driver of the car that caused the accident was out of his car and checking out where he hit us. He immediately knew the guy was “off” and announced to me he had to be drunk.
I started looking around and realized the drivers window was gone. Shattered. The driver side mirror was hanging by a thread. The police showed up and asked us what happened, took our info, and went off to ask the others. We later found out 2 people stayed at the scene to give statements to the police that we had the green light.
I noticed the police officer start questioning the driver of the car that hit us and I was SO thankful my window rolled down enough for me to hear their conversation! The guy could barely get a coherent sentence together and told the officer he was coming from a gas station in the total opposite direction of where he was. The officer asked him if he’d been drinking or had taken any narcotics and he denied both. Then he consented to taking a field sobriety test and we watched in awe as he failed the skills one after another. By that time, another officer appeared at the broken driver-side window and said he’d run me home to grab our other car (and I got to ride in the back of the squad car! That was my first and last time to experience that!). None of the doors opened so The Hubs and I had to crawl out of the car through his broken window.
I made it back to the scene just in time to see this:
We tried our hardest to remain totally calm to keep the girls calm. Chloe was behind my seat and we had her thoroughly checked out and she’s fine. Since none of the car doors opened, one of the firemen crawled into the car through the trunk and took the girls out one at a time, then got their car seats out, so we could load them up in our other car and get them home.
There’s nothing that makes you appreciate what you have like almost losing it. There are so many tiny things that could have been different that would have made the accident a lot worse. The Hubs and I have gone over the whole thing several times and the only thing we both explicitly remember is NOT hearing tires screeching. The guy never saw us. He never tried to brake. He never saw the red light he blew through. He had no injuries and showed no signs of remorse for the situation.
Luckily The Hubs and I are the only ones with bumps and bruises and stiff, sore necks. Luckily the girls were properly restrained in properly installed car seats. Luckily I’m a freak about car safety and we were all properly restrained. I went out that night and bought 3 new car seats for them because we wouldn’t allow them to ever ride in their old seats again.
So please, don’t drink and drive. Don’t let someone you know get behind the wheel after a few drinks. We were incredibly blessed to just crawl out of our car and walk away, but plenty of others aren’t so lucky. Hug your babies tighter and love on them every chance you get–we nearly lost ours in the blink of an eye because of someone else’s mistake. I’ll never take them, or anyone in my life, for granted again.
Stephanie Duboc October 11, 2011 - 11:55
I have been in many accidents where the other people were at fault i would love to talk to you to give you advice on certain procedures you should take when dealing with the other insurance company since i have had much experience in the department. If you are interested please email me at akgoods(at)gmail(dot)com
Kim October 11, 2011 - 11:59
Wow. I’m so glad you weren’t seriously hurt. It’s too bad other people don’t stop to think about what their choice to drink and drive might do to somebody else.
Laura October 11, 2011 - 12:03
Wow. Hopefully that guy realizes what he did and never drinks and drives again. I’m so glad you and your family are okay. It really does make you appreciate everything you have.
Stephanie H. October 11, 2011 - 12:11
Unbelievable. I highly despise drunk drivers from having my sister injured in an accident some years ago. So thankful none of you were seriously hurt.
Donna October 11, 2011 - 12:15
Thank the Lord you weren’t hurt any worse! I want to thank you for pointing out that you replaced the girls’ seats, too, because so many people just don’t know that they should be replaced after being in an accident.
Paula October 11, 2011 - 12:16
Oh my gosh. I am sooo glad you and the little ones are okay! How scary!!!
LovelyOlivia October 11, 2011 - 12:19
Long time reader, first time commenter…
Wow, that is so, so scary. Thank God you are all okay. That seems like a nightmare. Sending prayers to you all!
Meara October 11, 2011 - 12:41
I am so thankful you all are safe, and alive! People that make choices like that often have to kill before they change their ways… I hope that is not the case here!
Andrea October 11, 2011 - 12:48
OMG glad you are all well! Thinking of you and your family,
xo Andrea from Vienna!
Amy October 11, 2011 - 13:13
I am so sorry that you had to go through that experience, I am glad no one was hurt very badly!
Wendy October 11, 2011 - 13:36
I am so glad you are all ok and you shared this story. I to was hit by a drunk driver it was a terrifying experience. It is a shame that people knowing all the dangers of drunk driving still get out there and do it and allow others to do it also.
Katie L. October 11, 2011 - 14:15
I’m so glad everyone is ok! My sister rolled her car 8times when she was a teenager by avoiding a drunk driver. Then while I was in highschool one of my teachers was killed while riding her bicycle by being hit by a drunk driver…that had already caused 4 accidents but the police hadn’t caught up to him yet.
Thanking the Lord you and all of yours are safe.
Vanessa October 11, 2011 - 14:16
I glad you mentioned you got the girls new car seats but I’m pretty sure if you report to your car insurance company that they should reimburse you the money for the car seats or replace the car seats you had when the accident happened. I can’t be sure, it just something that I heard. Wouldn’t hurt to check up on it. Good luck and so happy you and your family are okay. ^_^
Pam October 11, 2011 - 15:13
Hi, I’ve been following your blog for a while. Thank God you and your family are safe! Must have been angels looking over you! Snuggle your babies extra tight and say a prayer of thanks.
Angela October 11, 2011 - 15:18
Thankfully you all were okay. This brought tears to my eyes just thinking about what would/could happen.
Kelly October 11, 2011 - 15:29
SO glad to hear you are okay! Drunk driving gets me more angry than just about anything else in this world. Thank God He protected you and your family!
lisa October 11, 2011 - 15:35
Thank the Lord for car seats! I’m so glad everyone was ok!
Amanda October 11, 2011 - 16:41
I only just stumbled on to your blog today, my goodness, what a first post to read!
So pleased you and your family are all okay, what a horrific experience for you all. The actions of this selfish individual are truly horrendous, will be giving my little ones an extra squish tonight.
Marie Gross October 11, 2011 - 16:54
Oh my goodness, Melissa! I am so glad your little family is okay!! Hugs.
Julie October 11, 2011 - 19:45
oh my goodness! I’m so glad you’re all ok. What a terrifying experience.
Bohemian Hijabi October 11, 2011 - 22:17
Oh my goodness! Thank God you guys are okay. I despise people who drive while intoxicated. And interestingly enough, they always manage to walk away from an accident unscathed.
seeks October 11, 2011 - 22:26
Holy moly! So glad you’re safe. And that your family is okay. And that they have taken the driver into custody. Wow. :-$
Kelli CPhotography October 11, 2011 - 22:59
I have been a silent reader for a while…just needed you to know how happy I am that everything turned out ok. God bless you and your family!
Jenni October 12, 2011 - 09:05
So thankful for your safety! We were side-swiped on the freeway downtown Chicago by a hit and run driver, and our car rolled several times in 4 lane traffic, finally landing upside down. I was driving, and it was the most terrifying experience of my life. We were all safe. My daughters looked like they were on a roller coaster ride, hanging upside down safety buckled into their car seats. I am still amazed by God’s mercy and grace! I still hug them a little tighter every time I remember that day.
Just wanted to tell you that most car insurances will pay for new car seats for your kids, so be sure to save the receipts and call your agent to find out your policy. Hope that helps!
Erica October 12, 2011 - 09:49
I have been a reading your blog for a while know. I have never written but could not be silent on this issue. First off I am so happy that your and your family are alright. It was by the grace of God that you all were not severely injured. Drunk driving takes the lives of many each year and the trend is continuing to grow. I just read an article in a magazine (Vogue I think) where more women are drinking and driving. It is such a sad sight to witness, and appalling that anyone would put their others in harms way because “they only had 2 drinks.” I agree with everyone that told you to look into the insurance company reimbursing you for the car seats. Most companies do now and it is a major relief after an accident. Take care.
Kathy C. October 12, 2011 - 11:20
I’m so glad you all are okay!!! I’m glad that nobody was seriously injured and the legal system can take care of the other driver….
My mom was critically injured back in June (her car hit head-on by a drunk driver)…mom survived, but is still not home due to the extent of her broken legs and arm (she will be able to walk again on her own)….I always believed in living each day to the most and NEVER taking anything for granted….mom’s crash and her journey of healing has helped many, many of our friend’s realize the same thing. Life here is short and precious. You need to make the most of everyday and be grateful for what you have….
If reading your blog will stop ONE PERSON from making the wrong decision of getting behind the wheel when they shouldn’t be…THANK YOU for posting this and again, so glad your family is okay!!!
Blessings from Oregon….
Melissa October 12, 2011 - 12:20 – In reply to: Kathy C.
Thank you everyone for your sweet thoughts and prayers. We’re incredibly grateful for them!
And thank you for your advice on the car seats. What you don’t know about me is that I’m a complete car seat freak and, among other things, I made sure we had car seat replacement coverage on our insurance when we had Sofie. The very first thing I did when we pulled into our garage Sunday afternoon was call our insurance company and start the claim, with my very first question being reimbursement on the seats. I talked to the agent on our claim this morning and she told me the info she needed from me and she’s going to file it through the other driver’s insurance for reimbursement as soon as she has all the necessary information. I’m just thankful we have the means to pay for 3 new seats out of pocket to keep our girls as safe as possible while we wait for all the insurance red tape.
paula October 12, 2011 - 12:44
This took my breath away! I am so glad you are all safe. Drunk driving is one of the most selfish things a person can do and I hope the guy gets the book thrown at him. I also hope he will get help so he doesn’t do it again 🙁
Thank God you are all OK.
REMEMBER PEOPLE: A taxi ride is a lot cheaper than a DUI!
Britta Swiderski October 12, 2011 - 12:48
God bless you and your family. The angels were looking out for you that day. Thank you for the reminder to all of us to hold our loved ones a little tighter. Much love.
amy tangerine October 12, 2011 - 12:50
wow. this is so very powerful. thank you for sharing this story and we are so glad you all are safe and relatively unhurt!
kendascrafts October 12, 2011 - 17:00
Wow, that is so scary! Really glad you and your family are ok! Also really glad they arrested that idiot.
Kristin October 13, 2011 - 08:57
So glad you and the family are okay, Melissa! <3
Jenna October 13, 2011 - 16:55
SO glad the kids are okay! I’m new to blogging and new to your blog in the last couple of months, but I had to say: I’m speechless after reading your post.. Just so thankful that everyone is alright! You’ll be in my thoughts!
Ines October 14, 2011 - 18:30
I was just thinking about you today and was shocked to see the accident.
I hope the girls are not going to remember a lot of the accident; it must have been quite scary for them. Such a frightful thing to go through especially with the new baby in the car.
Thank God that you all are okay!
Elisabeth October 14, 2011 - 20:07
I’ve read your blog for awhile now but I’m not sure if I’ve ever commented.
I’m so glad you and your family are safe! It’s so frustrating when other people don’t take driving seriously. I really just can’t imagine some driving that drunk and not even feeling bad about it. Despicable. Again, glad you’re all safe.
Sarah C October 14, 2011 - 21:12
I just stumbled across your blog and this story is unbelievable! It actually gave me goosebumps reading it. I am glad to hear that you and your family are all safe.
Tracy October 14, 2011 - 22:11
Thank the Good Lord you and your family were unscathed.
I had to read your blog to my hubby (especially the car seat paragraph). My three children are 9 7 & 3 and I am a real strong proponent for car seat use. My kids are tall for their age and I still require the older ones to sit in boosters. My hubby is not such a stickler and I rag on him all the time about his permissiveness.
I had a friend that had her 3 year old in the car during a serious car accident. Though neither had physical injures more than stiffness her son had nightmares for a long time afterwards and was terribly afraid of large trucks after the accident. Watch your girls closely and make sure they feel comfortably talking to you about the accident, they have their way. And give them lots of hugs, which I know you will.
Stay safe and we will see you at your keyboard soon.
Liz October 15, 2011 - 06:28
What a horrible experience! I’m so glad none of you were badly hurt.
Andrea October 16, 2011 - 11:27
So, so glad to hear that you guys are alright. I know exactly what you are feeling. My husband, myself and our 7 month old (at the time) were t-boned by a transport truck on the highway. Scary stuff. Car seat safety is so important, and I cannot believe the number of people out there who do not install or strap their child/ren in properly. Good for you for being so strict with car safety, and again, so glad to hear you are all ok.
Deborah October 19, 2011 - 09:40
How completely terrifying! I just stumbled onto your blog through Pinterest, and am tearing up reading about a stranger who nearly had the worst happen. I am so relieved to know everyone is OK, even though I don’t know you!!
Megan (Best of Fates) October 20, 2011 - 16:36
What a horrifying incident – I’m so glad you and your family are okay!
Stephanie October 21, 2011 - 18:33
I came across your blog after an image from one of your posts (a skirt tutorial, I think) was pinned on Pinterest. Thank God your entire family made it through okay!!
cucicucicoo November 04, 2011 - 16:24
oh my gosh, thank goodness all of you were ok and strapped in properly. how terribly scary.
Debby Peterson December 19, 2011 - 04:46
God protected you & your family that day.
It occurs to me that that man didn’t make a “mistake”, he made a choice – a terrible choice. I hope that he had serious consequences from his decision to put others in harm’s way. And I pray that none of you had any lingering injuries.
Danielle January 18, 2012 - 13:37
I’m sorry for your terrible car accident. I am a nurse. Thank the good Lord you and your children are ok. Your right not everyone is as lucky to come from those kinds of accidents w/ a drunk driver w/ just some bumps and bruises. Make sure you get new car seats. Even though the collision didn’t cause your kids harm you need to replace your carseats if they are EVER in an accident. There could be a compromised area in the carseat that you can’t tell until it doesn’t protect your child if in another accident. God bless as you heal mentally and physically : )