Not my baby, thank God. But, twice in the span of a week, I have found myself in the position of comforting a youth who was involved in their first car accident.
The first was a minor fender-bender last Thursday, when a sixteen year old boy accidentally put his dad's car in drive instead of reverse, resulting in the car jumping the curb and taking out a brick retaining wall in the parking lot across the street from Day Job. The poor kid was in total shock and I stayed with him until his dad arrived, talking calmly with him and reassuring him that he had done everything exactly right; he stayed at the scene, he reported it to police, he had his license and insurance card in hand, and he had called his parents. I also told him about Queen B's first accident (remember that time when the kid jumped out in front of her car and she broke his leg? Yeah, good times). He appreciated the story, I think.
Last night's accident was more serious, and, truly, could have been a complete tragedy had God not had his hand on the situation.
I was driving home from Denver, where I had spent the day at a retreat for Day Job. It was dark and the traffic was moving pretty fast on the interstate. I was about two and a half hours from home when I came up behind an accident that had just happened; a young girl had hit a deer and her car was completely disabled in the right hand lane. She had no working lights, so the car-a small, dark colored sports car-was virtually invisible until you were right on top of it. Luckily, a man had stopped at just the time I did and he had a reflective vest in his truck, so he was somewhat visible to oncoming traffic. I turned on my flashers and we did the best we could to keep an additional accident from happening until another gentleman arrived with flares and was able to assist. Once the traffic was slowed down, I spent the rest of my time comforting the poor kid- a twenty year old college student, in her brand-new car (insert sad face here), who was on her way to Neighboring City to spend fall break with her family.
She was a wreck, as anyone would be. So, I took her first into my arms and then into my car. She just needed a soft place to cry and to be comforted and I was glad I could be there to give her that. I stayed with her until State Patrol arrived, some time later, and then I continued on my way. Since I had loaned her my phone to call her phone (it was lost in the accident and we located it by calling it), I had her number, so I texted with her later in the night to make sure she got home ok.
I hate accidents. I hate that kids have accidents. But, man, I hope I threw some good karma out into the universe this week, because, if either of my kids ever needs a mom to help them and I'm not there, I hope it will return to us in the form of a good Samaritan.