A lot of people have called me an inspiration, and some have called me a miracle, and some say that I’m strong or amazing. But I know I’m just lucky.
I’m lucky that the accident happened in a somewhat urban area, where there’s plenty of first-responders and they could get to me in time. I’m lucky to have been taken to a modern hospital, with enough well-trained staff to save my life. I’m lucky that the accident wasn’t worse, that the speeds weren’t higher, that I was driving my Jeep and not my Kia. I’m lucky that I didn’t get any brain damage and wasn’t rendered a vegetable for the rest of my life. I’m lucky to have the rest of my life. I’m lucky that the internal bleeding stopped and I didn’t have to have emergency surgery. I’m lucky that my spine was just fractured and not broken, that I didn’t end up paralyzed.
I’m lucky to have a husband who spent every waking moment with me in the hospital, just sitting there waiting, keeping me company, holding my hand, doing everything for me and the nurses’ jobs too. I’m lucky that I didn’t have to cut off all my hair because he spent something like six painstaking hours over the course of the first two days meticulously detangling and washing it. I’m lucky to have friends who visited and brought flowers and fun stuff for me to do. I’m lucky that I have friends who will drop what they’re doing to come to the hospital and cut up my pancakes and feed them to me. I’m lucky to have friends who texted me every day and sent me books and flowers and food. I’m lucky to be a part of a professional association with so many caring people that I got cards from all over the country.
I’m lucky that I had excellent doctors and a rock-star surgeon. I’m lucky that the scar for my massive pelvic bolt is only about the size of a pea. I’m lucky that all my breaks were relatively simple or repairable, and that I could walk just 5 1/2 weeks after surgery. I’m lucky that I can walk at all, that I can ride and run and drive. I’m lucky that I can smile. I’m lucky that only half my face was paralyzed, and I’m lucky that the paralysis isn’t permanent. I’m lucky that I can’t remember the last time I needed a pain pill.
I know how lucky I am. My luck, my life, and my health is a privilege, to be cherished and honored. I’m not going to waste a minute of it. And if my determination inspires a few people to try to become a little bit stronger than they were yesterday, to relish life just a little bit more, then I’m lucky to have made an impact.