Icy Roads

December 13, 2007. I got off of work at 1900hrs. When I arrived at my aunt’s home to pick up Hope, she told me the roads were going to get bad. She begged for Hope and I to stay the night where she knew we were safe. I said no. My bed and my clothes were at home. I just wanted to be at home. I drove eastbound on I70. The snow was coming down in blankets. I reached down and buckled my seatbelt. I observed brake lights about a ¼ mile ahead of me. I stomped my breaks. My car started to slide to the right. Then all hell broke loose. My car spun counter clockwise. We spun two and a half revolutions, and then the car went in reverse and across the center median. My vehicle came to a stop with the backend halfway into the left lane of the westbound oncoming traffic. I was afraid another vehicle would hit mine. I jumped out of the car, and threw the driver’s seat forward. Hope was asleep in her car seat. I quickly unbuckled and pulled her out. The snow was still falling hard. Hope was looking around confused. A champagne colored SUV stopped on the shoulder. A middle aged man rolled the window down and said “You and your baby come sit in our car where it is warm; we’ve already called for help.” I sat in their heated leather back seat with Hope in my lap. I asked if I could use their cell phone. I called Deedee. I told her I had a wreck but, Hope and I were okay. I asked if they would come pick us up. She told me Guy would be on his way. The firefighters arrived in what felt like no time at all. They blocked the roadway so another vehicle couldn’t come along and hit my car. A fireman told me I must have had a guardian angel watching over me. He told me there were six wrecks in that one mile span of highway. Mine was the only one that had no fatalities involved. They pulled my car from the median. My car was drivable and there was no property damage, they said an accident report was not necessary but, it was my choice. I could stay and wait several hours for a police officer or I could go home. Guy called the good Samaritans phone and said he couldn’t get to me because the traffic was backed up. I told him I would head to their house. I put Hope in her car seat. I gripped the steering wheel and drove extra slow in the direction of their home. I could tell that the vehicle behind me was my uncle’s truck. I approached the road where my aunt’s house was located. I was driving 5-10 miles per hour. I turned the steering wheel left. My car began sliding right. I crashed down into a 4-5 foot cement embankment. Yes, I seriously wrecked my car twice in one night. There was no getting out of the cement ditch without a tow truck. I got Hope out of the car. My uncle was standing at the top of the embankment. I handed Hope to him. I said “I am done driving! I am done with this night!” Hope and I rode in his truck to their house a block down the road. The next day my aunt and uncle told me my Christmas gift would be tow truck services. I felt grateful. The tow truck got my car out with no problems. I was terrified to drive. My aunt Deedee drove me everywhere for 2-3 days. She gently reminded me that they were moving soon and I would have to drive on my own. She was right. They moved to Texas just before Christmas. Hope and I were truly alone. We didn’t have a single family member within 1000 miles. I didn’t want to stay in Colorado alone. On Christmas day Hope and I spent 8 hours on the road to Denver. Denver was normally a 4 hour drive. The weather conditions were a complete whiteout. The cars on the highway were all moving at 35 miles per hour or less. That trip was brutal. I had no washer fluid in my car. Every five minutes I was holding bottled water out the window and dumping it on the window as I drove. My wiper blades were frozen and doing no good. Every steep grade I drove down or up along the way, I braced myself for my car to slide. I saw a sign that said “state law chains required” I didn’t know what chains were. I pulled off the highway. I was panicking. I asked a gas station clerk where I could buy some and what they cost. She told me they cost about $50. I didn’t have $50! I continued to drive eastbound on the highway. I was scared of getting a ticket I wouldn’t be able to pay. I was terrified of wrecking. I cried most of the trip. Deedee called to check on us and see how our trip was going. I told her I was stressed, couldn’t talk, and would call her back later. Hope and I made it to our hotel around 2130hrs that night. The snow on the ground was to the bottom of the doors of my car. I called Deedee and told her we made it safely and we were headed to bed.

 

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