I was involved in a motor vehicle accident yesterday morning after dropping my kids off at school. I was alone in the car when it happened, thankfully, but I’m writing about it because it was an experience I’m having difficulty describing. It’s true what they say about things moving in slow motion when you’re in an accident. It’s like time is warped and curves around what is happening while your thoughts move in hyperspeed.
Milliseconds before the collision occurred I knew there would be impact, and what happened next wasn’t an out-of-body experience: it was more like I became so deeply rooted in the very depths of myself that the force of the truck hitting my wee little Kia knocked me into myself.
Metaphysical enough for you?
Let me go back to the day before for a moment. Those of who you have been following my divorce journey know the last few weeks were spent preparing for a settlement conference and I re-committed to a yoga and meditation practice as part of this. I kept up with my running and checking in with my support system, but I believe this dedicated quiet time of reflection fortified my body and soul for the events of this week. Setting aside 20-30 minutes a day to quiet my body and slow things down seemed to calm my anxiety and sent my mind trotting back to where it needed to be.
The day of the settlement conference I went for a run then treated myself to a chai latte and decked myself out in my royal blue Calvin Klein dress. This isn’t just any dress: it’s has the ability to transform me into a superhero, and I encourage everyone out there to invest in an outfit that does this.I received messages of encouragement and support all morning and I walked in that courthouse with the gait and grace of a woman who knows her worth.
When the negotiations ended without a resolution, I wasn’t shocked by his behaviour but more so by my own. I was calm. I’ve been so anxious the last 18 months that I’ve been losing hair like crazy and yet I smiled throughout the experience. I felt confidently rooted in what I knew to be right and true. I didn’t shed a tear. I didn’t feel anger. I felt peace. Ummmmm…who is this new person???
Back to the accident now. I felt the impact in the driver’s side and the side curtain airbag deployed and hit me in the head and I shifted sideways. The sounds were muted and I thought to myself how odd it seemed to feel. It was quiet and peaceful. I knew instantly that I was okay and that things would be okay.
I let a witness call 911 while I called my mom. I cried a little telling her what happened but I don’t feel like I shed tears. I remember being bummed that my friend Jamie, a paramedic, wouldn’t be the one to come to my aid and how much I craved a friend in that moment. I felt so still within that I haven’t shaken that sensation yet. The best way I can describe it is to say I felt a completely foreign sense of calm wash over me and a wave of gratitude crash into me.
I sat there and waited and things started to happen. I heard voices around me and I remained in my seat, unmoving, and let the ocean of humanity at its best drown me. The nearby garage owner directed traffic around the scene while a sweet LPN opened my door and covered me with my coat and reminded me to stay still. She checked me over and kept me talking and I acknowledged the chaos around us and told her that I was embarrassed to have created a traffic situation, which she quickly reminded me was not worth a second though. I know there was noise but all I felt was peace.
The LPN did her best to keep me warm and dealt with my insurance papers and the police. An ambulance arrived and the medic introduced himself and reassured me while cut away the airbag and put a collar around my neck. No one made a move without asking for my consent (I think I need speak to consent in another post) and I knew I was in good hands. In my head I was thinking that I should be bawling instead of smiling right now. WTF is going on here?
I was transported to the hospital where the medics covered me with heated blankets and my head injury concerns were taken seriously. I didn’t have my health card in my purse but the nurse found my records in the computer. My blood pressure was a bit high but my pulse was fine. My body may have been stressed but my mind was not. Someone was by my side the entire time.
When I was released from the ER and was settled at my parents’ house, I message my current “spiritual advisor” ( Love you, Chris!) that I was feeling oddly peaceful about everything and indicated that I felt like I had reached a new level of Enlightenment. I knew he’d understand and not roll his eyes at me like I’d finally lost it. I knew he would see what I had experienced, and acknowledge the freedom that literally crashed into me. He validated the gift I had received.
I’m full of gratitude for everything this week has brought me. I am grateful for a lawyer who sees the choice I made as one of strength and courage. I am grateful for the unconditional support of my family. I’m grateful for everyone involved in assisting at the accident scene yesterday. I’m grateful for the well wishes of the cab driver who picked us up at the hospital; for the insurance agents and towing company and auto body shop. I’m grateful for the flood of messages from friends and from people I only know on social media. I’ve been surrounded by nothing but love and kindness.
I am grateful for the strength I embraced within. I am grateful for the peace I have found. I am grateful for the acceptance of whatever the universe is sending my way. I am grateful that I have discovered the power of silence in a world full of noise.