Sunday, September 12, 2010
My Near Death Experience
On Friday morning, I was driving my new (as just bought, but not brand new) 2006 Mustang on interstate 68. It was about 7 in the morning. Why was I out at this time you may ask? Because my girlfriend and I had had a fight the night before and I left my house and spent the night with my friend in Hagerstown (about an hour away from Cumberland).
So the next morning I woke up and headed back to my casa when I started feeling tired. Really, really tired. I had even stopped to get a cup of hot java, but that wasn't enough to keep my from falling asleep.
So at around 65-70 mph I had a horrific collision on the interstate. As I woke up when my tires it the side margins it was already too late. My car was out of control and the only thing the steering column was good for now was holding on to.
Part of me realizes how lucky I was just to be in a Mustang. Any SUV or truck would have flipped when my car did a 360 at those speeds.
That was only one part of my luck in this accident.
I-68 is hilly. Therefore there are a few runaway truck ramps should rigs going to Wal-Mart or where ever lose their brakes or need to get of the road for an emergency.
Of course there are signs that say "Runaway Truck Ramp in 1/2 mile," etc. This runaway truck sign literally saved my life. As I was out of control on the right-hand shoulder I was getting closer and closer to the guard-rail, which in my opinion is a complete joke because it's only about 2 feet high. No much help to anything other than a SmartCar. However, the runaway truck sign is about 8-10 feet tall built with solid I-beams and cemented firmly into the ground.
I new that if I hit the guard rail I'd have blown right over it and tumbled maybe a half dozen times down the 75 foot hill to the road below. And I would have bought the farm in full. Luckily, my engine as I was spinning hit one of the two I-beams for this runaway truck sign, stopping me a few feet from rolling down the hill.
Had the I-beam slammed into my door I'd have probably died or at least been severely maimed. If I had missed the sign I would have flown down the hill and died for sure. But some how, the I-beam struck my car in the one place that saved my life.
I walked out, no broken bones, only a few lacerations and bruises.
The car was totaled, but I looked like I might have just hit my head a little hard against a wall or something.
When you have a near death experience, you start to think about the life you are leading and how you would feel about the deeds and choices you have made. Would I have been proud of my life if it ended the other day and such.
I quickly came to the conclusion that all that is worth anything in this life are the people you love. I would have regretted all the times I didn't attend a family function or yelled at a parent without warrant.
It is unfortunate that it took an event like a car crash to make me look at the bigger picture. It sometimes takes a near death experience to realize what matters in life. If it changes me for the best, then everyday I continue to live, I will be happier as I appreciate the gift of life, love and family that much more.
Be safe on the road. And pull over if you're tired. You don't want to go through what happened to me.
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