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It Can Wait

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It was a sun drenched day in North Carolina. You could smell the sweet blossom of wildflowers in the air. It seemed like one of those days where everything would be beautiful and clean…not too humid, not too cool, everything alive with color.

My son, his father and I packed ourselves into the car to head into town. We were living out in the country at the time, and town was a few miles away.

I remember as we were approaching the main highway, that I was staring off into a field with an old, huge house at the end. We were just getting ready to make a right onto the main highway.

That’s when I heard my boyfriend gasp and point. I was shaken out of my poetic bliss and looked in the direction he was pointing. There was a mini van on its side in a ditch that sat in front of one of the homes lined across the opposite side of the highway. There were no emergency vehicles nor police at the wreckage. It had just happened.

I mentioned that, and my boyfriend, being a former EMT, asked me if he should stop to help. Of course I said yes. He pulled over on the right shoulder and hurried across the highway.

From our car, I saw a thin, leggy, time stricken woman walking around in a tank top and shorts, looking confused and shocked.

Others had pulled over by then, and I saw them lift a baby from the rear of the van. My boyfriend was at the front passengers side, where the van was impacted the most. He appeared to be talking to someone.

I decided to get out and told my son to stay in the back seat of our car and keep his seatbelt on, even though we were parked.

As I began to walk across the highway, my boyfriend rushed across with his hand up and said in a choked up voice “Go back to the car, you don’t want to see this”. Not used to seeing him near tears, I went back to the car and watched him as he walked back to the passenger side of the van, his arm outstretched to the inside and his lips moving.

It seemed like it took too long for medics to arrive. And I suppose, with a wreck far out on country roads, it did take them awhile.

My boyfriend returned to the car some minutes after medics, police and a helicoptor arrived. He was clearly shaken and so was I, and our son was of course full of questions.

My boyfriend said he was holding the woman’s hand and trying to calm her as she was dying. He later told me their was a gurgling sound when she tried to talk and that her other hand that he was not holding was hanging there, almost severed.

I learned later that the wreck happened because the driver answered a cell phone call and lost control of her vehicle. Her inlaw sister was the one who died.

PLEASE! IT CAN WAIT! If not, then pull over to a safe place. By doing so, you can save the lives of others as well as your own…

Heather Lenz

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