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Goodbye, Jess

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Fear, disbelief and disappointment filled my mind as I sat, bleeding in the passenger seat of the car. I could only see the red blood from my face and the smoke from the engine. My mind was buzzing. What had just happened?

The loud music of my alarm clock woke me as I slowly slid out of bed and ventured to the kitchen for breakfast. It was the start of my regular morning. After eating, getting dressed and doing my hair I walked out onto my front porch to wait.

It was a cold and cloudy Monday morning as I waited out front for my ride to arrive. Every morning my boyfriend would pick me up in his blue firebird, which he named Jess, and we would drive to school. It was a typical morning with mild traffic on Street Road. We had just made our right turn onto Newtown Road, where we would cut through the apartment buildings, when a black pickup truck swayed into our lane. With a quick reflex, my boyfriend swerved out of the way.

My body jolted forward with the car. We had hit a telephone pole head on. I opened my eyes to see darkness and feel blood dripping down my face and onto my clothes. I felt somebody pull me out of the car; it was my boyfriend. We stood on the side of the road watching cars drive by us. My boyfriend tried to help me remain calm while we waited for help, but I was crying hysterically. Finally, a man in a dark green pickup truck pulled over next to us and offered for us to sit in the truck while we waited for an ambulance.

I could barely hold my own head up. The back of neck was in excruciating pain and my face felt as if it were on fire. My boyfriend was not as injured as I was; he had a busted lip, a scratch across his cheek and chest pain. The man in the green truck helped me hold my head up while I tried to stay calm.

About twenty minutes later, one ambulance arrived along with a police officer. The police officer questioned my boyfriend and me by asking our names, our addresses, our phone numbers, our Social Security Numbers, our story about what had happened and if we were wearing out seatbelts. I tried to answer all of his questions, but I was in too much pain and could not think straight. My boyfriend told the police officer all of our information and disappointedly said that we were not wearing our seatbelts. Then, my boyfriend’s mother arrived and rushed over to see how we were. When she looked at me she said, “Try not to worry, honey, but I think your nose and cheek may be broken.” After hearing that, I began to cry again.

The two men in the ambulance hoisted me up onto the stretcher and attached a brace around my neck. It was extremely uncomfortable; the hard plastic was digging into the back of my head and the Velcro was sticking to my hair.

They rolled the stretcher into the back of the ambulance and allowed my boyfriend and his mother to ride with me. The man in the back of the ambulance comforted me by saying, “Everything will be fine. Don’t you worry. We will make your face look brand new.” Then, he stuck an IV into my right hand and we were on our way to the hospital.

When the ambulance finally came to a stop, the back doors flung open and I was quickly wheeled into the hospital. The female nurse who was pushing the stretcher rolled me into a white hallway and said, “Someone will be with you shortly.”

So I lay there, staring at the white and brown ceiling just waiting for somebody to come and help. Then, my dad came speed walking down the hallway to see me. He looked over top of me and I began to cry again.

A nurse in white and blue scrubs politely confronted us and said I could now be put into Room 212 where I would wait for a doctor to come and see me. My boyfriend was placed in his own room, Room 222, where he would also wait to be evaluated by a doctor.

It seemed like an eternity before a doctor finally arrived. When he did, he took one good look at me and said I would need stitches and my nose would need surgery. I had never gotten surgery before, and to be honest, the sound of it frightened me.

As I laid there in disbelief, the doctor attempted to clean off the dry blood that stuck to my face. The dry blood from my nose and cheek had stopped fresh blood from pouring out of the open wounds. When he wiped off the crusty, dry blood, fresh blood started to gush and squirt. The doctor had a difficult time trying to stop it, so he ordered a nurse to hurry and get him stitching utensils.

It took twelve painful stitches to stop the blood and close the wounds. Afterwards, the nurses wheeled my into a dark room where I would get x-rays on my neck, chest, face and back. My x-rays came back positive for a broken nose. Then, it was time for a cat scan.

Two nurses lifted me up onto a platform and slowly rolled me back into the cylinder-like machine. I had to stay perfectly still so they could make sure it was only my nose that was broken. Sure enough, that was all that had broken.

I was escorted back to my room where I had to wait for another doctor to come see me. When he arrived, he asked me if I could use the restroom and urinate in a cup. I agreed and began to walk to the restroom. My boyfriend’s room was across the hall from where I had to go, so I decided to go in and see how he was doing. When I walked through the blue curtain, his eyes widened in disbelief. From the look on his face, I knew my face was bad.

I quickly left his room and went into the bathroom. When I opened the door, I saw myself in the mirror. I busted into tears. My nose was completely turned to the left, my right cheek was missing skin and bleeding, there were huge gash marks all down my nose and my entire face was swollen like a balloon. I could not believe this had happened to me. I did not understand how things could go wrong so quickly.

It was time to leave the hospital; my boyfriend and I were dismissed at the same time. It became a beautiful day outside, but I was in too much pain to enjoy it. The last thing I wanted to do was drive in a car all the way home, but I did not have a choice.

Three days later it was time for me to get surgery on my nose. My appointment was for Thursday at 6:00 AM sharp. My mom and I arrived early and waited patiently in the waiting room. At 6:00 AM my name was called to go back and prepare for surgery. I was so nervous; all I could think about was not being able to wake up from the anesthesia, but I had to calm myself down before I had a panic attack.

The nurse in the back room asked if I could undress and put on a white hospital gown. Afterwards, she stuck an IV into the top of my left hand and I waited about an hour before being taken back into the surgery room.

The next thing I could remember was sitting in the same chair I was before surgery and having a tan, plastic covering over top of my nose and blue rubber splints in both of my nostrils. The doctor had told me that the rubber splints were there to keep my nose in line since it had shattered into many pieces; the tan, plastic covering was there to protect my nose. He said the splints and nose covering would be able to come off in about and week and a half.

The rest of the week I did not go to school. My face was still severely swollen to the point that I was not able to see. The worst part about it was Halloween was that weekend. I was not able to go out with my friends, but they came to me. My dad told me, “Well, at least this year you won’t have to go out and get a costume because you already have a scary mask on.” His comment made me laugh and smile, even though it hurt to do both.

A week after the accident, the next Monday, I went to school. I did not care what people might say when they saw me because there was nothing I could do about the way I looked. Many people gave me confused and dirty looks, but for the most part, people were very comforting and supportive. Teachers were very laid back on the work that I missed; they allowed me to take as long as I needed. Also, my guidance counselor was very supportive; he told me if I needed anything at all, I could go to him.

On Thursday, I had an appointment with my surgeon to see how I was doing. He said to leave the plastic covering and the rubber splints on my nose for another week. My mom made another appointment for the following Thursday to have them removed.

My nose was so irritated. The rubber splints, which were four inches long each, were pressing against the inside of my nostril causing them to bleed constantly. The stitches inside of my nose, that were holding them in place, hurt even worse. To top it all off, my face was still swollen.

The next Thursday, my mom and I went back for my other appointment. It was time for everything to come off. The doctor used extremely small scissors to reach into my nostrils and cut the stitches. Then, he used big, metal tweezers to pull the splints out. After pulling them out, blood followed. I had to sit in the chair with my head back for fifteen minutes before the blood stopped. Next, he pulled off the plastic nose covering. When I looked in the mirror, my nose looked completely different. It was skinnier than usual and tilted a little to the left, but I did not care. I was just glad it was over and things would start going back to normal.

Jess was destroyed. The front end was smashed in causing the hood to make a triangular shape. The windshield had a small crack in it from where my head smacked. It would have cost over two thousand dollars to fix her, but my boyfriend decided not to considering he only bought her for five hundred.

Getting into a car accident really opens you up to life. It shows you that anything could go wrong in the blink of an eye, even if you are trying to be careful. We were only going about twenty-five miles per hour and we still ended up in an accident. Also, every time I get into a vehicle, the first thing I do is put on my seatbelt. When my boyfriend started driving, my mom would always say, “Make sure you look out for the idiots on the road. It’s not you I’m worried about, it’s them.” I guess she was right; if that idiot never swerved into our lane, we would have never gotten into that mess.





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