We have a testimony of God's protection and overwhelming care for our family to share with you.
Saturday evening Hubby and I decided to pack up the car and head up to Gigi's to finish up some things at our house that is for sale since Hubby had Monday off. We loaded up and headed out around 9:15 p.m. We turned on to the highway, the girls were all ready to snooze. I took off my seat belt to adjust blankets and pillows for them before they fell asleep. I got my seat belt back on and within a minute Hubby and I both saw a Jeep Liberty in the oncoming traffic cross the grassy median and head straight for us. We were driving at probably 65 m.p.h. and that Jeep had to have been heading at us at the same speed.
I remember seeing the Jeep jump the median and fly in the air at our car. This moment will be forever locked into my head as I could only think of my two precious babies in the back of our car and thought, "This is it! It's all over." It is surreal...it was exactly like what you see in a movie...NOT in your real life. I am still having a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that this really happened to us.
I am pretty sure I blacked out upon impact because the next thing I remember after hearing a crunching noise was Hubby SCREAMING at me, "The car's on fire, GET THE GIRLS!!!!" I am thankful for adrenaline and the rush that causes you to ACT. I looked up saw the air bag and flames bursting out of the front of the car that was pushed up to the windshield. I can not even begin to express to you the feeling that came over me when I was able to unbuckle my seat belt, get my car door open enough to get out and get Peanut's car door open, and see that Hubby was able to do the same thing for Pumpkin.
The first thing I thought when seeing the flames was, "Our doors...can we open the doors? The car's going to explode." Thank you JESUS that all the doors opened, nothing was jammed shut. I did have a difficult time getting Peanut's buckles undone because I was shaking so badly.
People started running to help us, I heard people screaming, "Call 9-1-1!" Hubby and I clung to the girls and watched as our car burned. Then I heard a woman yell, "That car is going to explode." At this point we ran far from the car and I realized my shoes had fallen off in the impact and I was barefoot. Daddy collapsed in the median with Pumpkin. I stood at the side in shock with Peanut clinging to me.
After a few minutes the fire went out and a very brave man ran to our car and got out the bags that were in the front and found Daddy's glasses. His glasses are fine. They have no dents, no scratches after being flung off from hitting the air bag.
Another kind man led us to his car to sit and wait for emergency crews to come. We watched as the flames began again. By this time the fire department was there and they put the fire out.
Peanut clung to me, whimpering if I tried to move her at all out of fear. Pumpkin clung to Daddy and was in shock not making any sounds, facial expressions or eye contact. As we sat in the car it became evident that we were hurting pretty bad but we were able to walk and answer questions clearly.
We were taken together in an ambulance to the hospital to be looked over. Daddy, Pumpkin, and Peanut had chest x-rays done. Daddy also had an x-ray on his knee done and a CAT scan. His report came back that he has a hairline fracture in his sternum. The girls and I have nasty burns across our necks and chests from the seat belt/car seat straps. I have major bruising on my right leg and all along my chest and abdomen where the seat belt was and my tailbone area. Did you know bruises can be just black? I'll just say that Pumpkin is officially weaned from nursing due to this...that is how bad the pain and bruising are on my chest. I kind of look like an abstract painting done in black and blue paint! I'll spare you photos of our yucky bruises abrasions, but here are a couple of the girls from where the car seat straps got them.
The fact that we walked away from this with no serious injuries is AMAZING! Sunday we were able to go see the car and get our belongings. While waiting in the office another family involved in the accident came to do the same thing. The woman's father said that when he arrived on the scene and saw our car, he was sure that someone was more than likely killed just by how awful our car looked.
When I laid eyes on our car, I cried. I can not believe that we just got out and walked away. I can't believe the doors opened because the front of the car was completely smashed in. The frame of the car held tight and did it's job. The air bags both deployed saving us from hitting the shattered windshield or dashboard. The girls car seats were still fastened tight into place.
Right after the accident, I was able to get ahold of Dobbie while we were on the scene. She got ahold of Gigi who jumped in his van with Special Friend and drove immediately to us. They got to the hospital just as we were discharged from the ER.
They stayed the night and day with us helping with the girls and helping us run some errands. We had to get new car seats for the girls as the old ones will be destroyed now that they have been through an accident. Those car seats did their jobs and held our girls tight into place.
Sunday evening we all headed to Gigi's house. Daddy and I are very sore. Daddy's chest is hurting quite a bit. I am in ALOT of pain in my upper body and can hardly move so lifting the girls and doing Mommy duties is going to be hard for a few days. We have help at Gigi's house so we will stay here for a few days before returning home.
According to the paper and from what we know the Jeep Liberty had two people in it. They were heading off an exit ramp that has a big curve in it. She must have been going too fast, missed that curve, sped off across the southbound traffic, come through the median, jumped it, the side of the Jeep slammed into the front of our car, sending us spinning, the Jeep hit a mini-van containing a mother and her 3 children, then went down the embankment on the opposite side of the road from where it began.
I believe all 10 victims were taken to the hospital. One of the Jeep passengers had a collapsed lung but was released. Everyone was able to walk away. Amazing!
On the drive to Gigi's I sat in the front seat and felt very skiddish most of the drive home. Peanut wanted the light on in the van after dark because she was afraid of the lights from the cars. Whenever I close my eyes I see that Jeep headed straight for us.
Daddy and I laid in bed in the wee hours of the morning praying and thanking God that both of our sweet babies were sleeping soundly in our home. We came home with both of them! Thank you Jesus!
Thank you to everyone who has been lifting our family up in prayers. We love you all and are so grateful for the phone calls, emails, Facebook comments and so on. It means so much more to us than you can ever know.
It ended up that the woman we met at the towing service who was also in the accident is a dear friend to another woman who knows quite a few of our friends from up north. That is crazy to me. She also knew that God intervened and protected all of us. It was encouraging to talk with her and share our experience together.
We are grateful for the strong frame on that little Toyota and that God held on to us tightly that night!