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Friday, 13 March 2009

What ifs and never minds...

uheldig Pictures, Images and Photos


Well, you've enjoyed (ahem!) a couple of days of Sturm und Drang and then sweetness and light, courtesy of my adorable 17 year old teenager, Grizzler, now...

What next? Well, you haven't yet told them about the car crash on Wednesday morning that nearly killed him... Ah yes, the crash...

Grizz left for school on Wednesday morning, just as he usually does; This time he was cadging a lift with our neighbour's son, which has been a pretty regular occurrence since our neighbour's son, Chris, and another neighbour's boy, Liam, passed their driving tests... They are a year older than my Grizz, and while Liam has access to his mother's car, Chris was able to pay for his own, as he has been working part-time in our local supermarket while at school...

I have never been happy with this arrangement, as you can imagine, while there is a perfectly serviceable school bus to ferry them to and from school. And yet, as you might appreciate, in the case of strong-willed young adults, sometimes the mantra, 'Listen To Your Parents,' just doesn't enter the vocabulary!

I waved him off, joking at the layers of deodorant he had applied, which had filled the room with perfume... I knew no more until two hours later, Grizz walks through the door, Chris's mum following close behind, looking as if she'd been frightened by all the 13 ghosts...

13 Ghosts Pictures, Images and Photos

"Fhina, there's been an accident...",

"But we're fine mum, really..."

At this point, I had shot from my sofa-inclined position and leapt into some kind of action, I don't know what; My voice trembling, as Chris's mum's was.

I checked out how Grizz was, touching his limbs and his head, asking after Chris too. I learned that the recently purchased, second hand, pristine, hardly used, silver car was now a complete and utter write-off... I gently ordered my neighbour back home to her son, as I knew she would want to see to him, as I could see she was overwrought, and would need also to rest from the ordeal. (Ironically, she is in a very similar position to me, being are both in post-op. recovery, waiting to return to full-time jobs).

Grizz incurred a couple of minor cuts, sticking plasters applied to wrist and fingers, cut from the tiny shards of glass they had to crawl out over to exit the car. He seemed otherwise unscathed. I fired questions at him, he replied, somewhat cagily:

We might have skidded on some black ice; Chris had kind of lost control of the car; We were pushed over onto to the wrong side of the country road; Thankfully, no other traffic was coming; We then left the road and crashed through some young trees, which slowed the car down; The passenger side tyre exploded, and the car did a forward flip, landing upside down, cradled on its roof, in a ditch; The airbags blew, and I smelled the gunpowder, and thought the car might blow up... I undid my seatbelt and collapsed onto the roof of the car, Chris carefully undid his belt and leading the way, crawled out through a back door, the only door that would still open; A passing lady motorist from the nearby farm called the Police and an Ambulance... Chris called his parents...

It transpired Grizz hadn't wanted to call me, for fear I would overreact and drive like a loon to the scene, worried to a frazzle, crashing my own car as a consequence... (I have driven it only once since November). All of this occurs on the first day that GJ is out of the county for work, miles away... So Grizz only had me to call up, and he took the decision not to...

crash poster Pictures, Images and Photos

Three Police cars drew up and officers took details of the accident, checking the road, and diverting the light traffic, not pressing any charges. They ordered a recovery service to retrieve the car from the ditch. Chris's parents had overseen the proceedings, and medics checked over our sons, one of them joking that he would bandage Chris's dad's hands for him, so that the raining blows later would not impact so heavily on Chris!

Chris's mum told me that the Ambulance staff were chipper, pleased on this occasion, to only be dealing with relatively minor injuries from such a bad accident...

"Fhina, they've been very lucky... They've been very lucky..." She kept on repeating to me... and to herself.

Grizz sat down, after helping himself to food and drink, and asked to ring his dad, to break the news of what had happened... He logged on to his laptop and began to download pics of the accident he had taken with his 'phone... Of course, I was incredulous that he had taken photos, and not stood sobbing by the side of the road, as would have been my reaction, sans doute!

I could not believe what I now saw, and was astounded they had not been more severely injured, and amazed by his somewhat bullish reaction to what looked to me like a near-death experience...

funny-pictures-plane-crash-lessons-.jpg Pictures, Images and Photos

He asked to sit with me and watch a film. He picked out Oliver Stone's World Trade Center! I wondered whether this was his way of putting the morning into some kind of perspective?

As I watched over him, lying across the sofa, under the wine coloured, sequinned throw, I witnessed how he grew distracted from time to time, staring out of the window, obviously mulling over what had happened to him... Sifting the what ifs and never minds...

Later in the day, more details did emerge, particularly when Liam called to ask about the accident... Word had spread at school, and via the Internet. Where else these days, you might ask?!

Invisible Bike Crash Pictures, Images and Photos

Grizz was more honest with Liam, than he had been with me, and the picture emerged of a young driver who had possibly taken the bend too sharply and perhaps too quickly, who had been inexperienced to deal with the hand the road had dealt him, who had pressed hard on the brake, precipitating the journey onto the grassy verge, bursting the tyre and cascading through thankfully tender trees amid metallic grinding and crunching, screaming, and the shattering of glass.

Until they landed and descended into silence, cradled by the earth...



And I whispered to him, as he lay on the sofa, "Thankfully you put all that deodorant on this morning. It must have protected you!"

comic relief Pictures, Images and Photos***



*** "Comic Relief is a charity - but it's also a business too.

The money we raise is allocated to a wide range of grants and social investments aimed at delivering real and long-lasting change to the poorest, most vulnerable people at home and across the world; as well as informing the public and young people in particular about global citizenship and the underlying causes of extreme poverty".

25 comments:

Suldog said...

My goodness. God was certainly on their side that day. Any time you flip over and land on the roof... Very glad to hear it was all OK, in the end, and that the worst (or best) from it was an interesting story.

Diane said...

Oh, honey... my heart was in my throat and tears were in my eyes all through that. I can only imagine what you must have been feeling. Thank heavens he's OK... and hopefully a bit wiser, lesson learned. XOXO

Carolina said...

See? And you didn't think they were sensible young guys! Your son crawled out of the crashed car and thought: WOW, I have to take some pictures, this will only happen to me ONCE in a lifetime (let's all hope so!). Gosh, that must have frightened the .... out of you all! At least they are okay!

Your story reminded me of my brother (about 20 at the time) and his friend who had a drivers' licence and a car, and they came up to see my parents and me on holiday somewhere in the woods in a cottage, and when they arrived, my brother had his legs stuck out of the windscreen that was no longer there and they had the greatest fun! Being able to rest your legs on the motorhood of the car while you were sitting in it was SO COOL! Turned out they had taken 'a shortcut' through the woods, the car had tumbled over and then back on all fours again, the windscreen cracked so they removed the whole thing and then proceeded with their journey.

I was about 12 so I thought it was cool too. My parents didn't.

blognut said...

God, Fhina! I'm glad he's okay, really glad. I bet that scared the bejesus out of you.

I'll be wrapping up my children in layers of bubble-wrap when they start going off with teenage drivers, and I'll be worried sick.

Derrick said...

Hello Fhina,

Hopefully, Grizz now knows how fortunate he is to have escaped relatively unscathed and to have such a lovely mum!

Have an uneventful weekend.

Scriptor Senex said...

Thank all the heavens.

(And don't blame Chris too much - he was probably overcome by deodorant fumes! I know that I feel light-headed when I come out of Rich's room in the morning.)

Belle said...

I'm so glad he is alright Fhina. The Director had his first crash a year ago. He had just got his licence and was driving through the Sussex hedgerows. I still remember the panic I felt when I received the call...

Protege said...

I cannot even imagine the anguish you must have felt; there is nothing worse than fearing for the life and security of your family. Children foremost.
I have just these past two days experienced the feeling of loss of control and a similar fear, as someone dear to me was taken to the hospital. So this post hit close to home for me too.
I am happy that your child is fine. Hopefully he can take something away from this, mostly knowledge, that will protect him in the future as well.
Thank you for sharing this personal story.

jinksy said...

I had a similar experience - both my kids were in son's first car when an uninsured truck drove into the side of it - phone call came from daughter's friend. She asked to speak to my hubby, when I answered the phone! Kids, eh? Glad nothing worse than lost car...and maybe dignity.

Aleksandra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
carma said...

thank God he is Ok. Scary stuff. I would say back to the bus after this episode. I think I'll have my son taking the bus until he is at least 23 :-)
I heard somewhere recently that 80% of first year drivers get into car accidents. Those are not good odds!
carma

Aleksandra said...

Grrr something went wrong again with my message,I ment,men hope it is not needed to learn from this kind of situations,but when we get out of them all right,than hopefully the lesson is taken.He will be better driver after this cause he is having experience of his life!You take care of eachother,have a greater than great week-end and what a wonderful thing you are doing with Comic relief,cool! Love from Sandra

French Fancy said...

Ibet you keep thinking - what if another car had been coming towards them down that country road. Oh Fhina, you're going to worry more each time he leaves the house now. What a shame this happened and thank heavens it was not worse.

Get him back on to the bus

Henry the Dog's Mum said...

Oh Fhina - all these car crashes. I think of Braja and your boy and what could have been. Life is so precious and so very fragile. Let's hope that was his one and only 'car scrape' - we've all had them. Some so very worse than others. Thankfully he's alive and well. I've just seen your comment on my blog about Braja. I don't know what we can do. I think I'll post a comment on that update blogsite and see if they'll respond..xxxxx

Michelle said...

Fhina I am so freaking happy that your son is OK!!! OK!!! OK!!!

That is scary shit but he came out of it smarter and wiser and needing his mum.

I love you!! ARE YOU OK????

Pouty Lips said...

First off thank God both your sons are fine. This is a really good post and I really liked the light-hearted ending about the deoderant protectorate.

A Woman Of No Importance said...

Dear all, I shall respond to you all tomorrow, hope that's okay -

My boy is well and healing - He is seeing friends tonight, once again I am worrying, as is only normal - Please accept my thanks for your love and wishes for our good health!

Please can you now go and send positive comments for love and healing at
Braja's place:

Lostandfoundinindia.blogspot.com

As Braja and her husband and driver have also been in a terrible crash. All are currently in hospital in a variety of stages of recovery.

Please send your love, and think of them this weekend, mes dahlinks. 'Bye and much love, Fhi xxx

Miss_Suz-x said...

just popped in to say hi! and to lurk a bit....and read a bit.....

talk soon...nah l'm not packing start tomorrow after we get the keys....am sitting with lovely daughter weeping and laughing ...watching comic relief!!

do yo think johnny will appear.....pah!
l'll pay if you can arrange it!!

A Woman Of No Importance said...

Saz - Johnny is on Sky Arts right now, darling - About Sun Records! Bizarrely a cosmic coincidence xxx

lakeviewer said...

Fhina, you and your son are in everybody's thoughts/prayers. Close calls like these are the experiences that will change his mindset. He is changed, has learned the limits, has seen death open its doors right in front of him. He's in shock. You're all in shock.

Enough.

You will be more cautious, more loving, more nervous. Teens are developmentally unable to make certain decisions about safety because their chemistry is all about stretching their wings, show off their prowess, and dare each other.

Parents and teachers must remain vigilant with their presence, firm with their rulings, generous with their praises, and united in providing alternative activities where children at this age can experience competitions and challenges.

We can't hide them in a cave until they can go out, slay dragons, and win their fair maidens. They need to test themselves, from the time they are eight or nine, incrementally. I think we need to work as a community to establish activities and programs, in and out of schools, in and out of churches and clubs. If we provide safer and yet challenging activities, we can be assured our boys and girls can develop and be tested appropriately. This is something I need to spend time developing on my post.

Fhina, take a deep breath, get good rest.

Lisa said...

when do we get to turn the parent hood switch off ?
so glad all is ok, Lisa x

ladyfi said...

Thank goodness they were OK! That's a call that any parent dreads hearing.

Also.. a bit poignant considering the news about our dear Braja. One of her fellow devotees who has been keeping us updated has given me the URL to the Apollo hospital where all three are being treated and there is an address there. He thought that it would be all right to send cards to her there. I'll be posting up an address later on for those who don't have it... So, go ahead and send a card if you want to...

sallymandy said...

Oh, how frightening. I'm so glad no one was badly hurt.

It takes a lot of courage to parent a teenager.

A Woman Of No Importance said...

Suldog: I know, Sir, and it seemed odd to write about it, but it helped weigh what had happened and how close we had come to something unthinkable. Bless you for your kind wishes.

Diane: Thank you for your support, Diane - It was traumatic, and you have to think carefully about what you say to them, and not apportioning blame, but hopeful that lessons have been taken on board, so that they will not take so many risks. Bringing up teens is a bit of a minefield, and I know there are folk in worse positions, but this was definitely a brush with bigger things... and brings you back to what matters - Love. xoox

Carolina: I know, and he did not wait to get his school bag out, he reacted as you ought in an accident, and I am so proud of him for that. I was worried at how bullish he was being at first, and then gradually he softened and understood, and taking the photos was a likely part of that process. Gosh, your brother's story was scary, as well as funny! What are they like, and what do they get up to that we just don't know about! Yikes! x

blognut: Bloggus, I think bubble-wrapping children, and tagging them (like they do parolees) is probably a good thing; Or chipping them and tracking them like you can do cats and dogs! x

Derrick: I think relations have thawed, Derrick, definitely! He appreciates us more and knows the great strength of our feelings for him, I think...

Scriptor: I know, I was very careful not to blame Chris, whom I've always called my adoptive son, he's come over to the house these past seven years, talking to me like Grizz doesn't, sometimes... Thank you for your support, Sir!

Belle: Thank you for sharing your tale of the Director! We love them, and we are in for a lifetime of worry, wonder and little miracles, I think, non?! x

Protege: My thoughts are with you, Z, at this troubled time - I hope the situation improves for your friend. Love and light x

jinksy: Oh, jinksy! These teenage stories are legion, aren't they? And I'll bet they still, even now they're grown up, give you the occasional flutter! Bless you x

Carma: I agree, and wanted to delay Grizz taking driving lessons at 17, and the pressure gets enormous - I think this episode has given them all pause for thought - I hope the thought sticks, and that they are more cautious in the future. I hope... x

Aleksandra: There you are, precious! I know that what you say is correct, that this will make him think twice about taking risks with his own driving - I really hope so! x Have a fabulous weekend, petal!

FF: I have been through all and every usual scenario, FF - This is a busy country road, with huge farm traffic and men in vans - What could be worse! He saw friends last night - Someone's birthday, and we were absolutely on tenterhooks, and sat up way past our bedtime, to await his return (and I could not resist also pestering him with texts, enquiring after his whereabouts and safety!) x

Henry the Dog's Mum: I know - this is just so strange, Henry's Mum - such an odd juxtaposition of events, and I can't help thinking of Braja, her husband and their driver and wishing them every chance of a full recovery... Thank you for all you are doing to keep us close to Braja's heart! xxx

Michelle: I am fine, thankyou, love! A bit more shakey, but not so's you'd notice! Hope you're enjoying your WALKS!!! xxx

Pouty: Hello you! I am glad you liked the 'ending' - it was a way of relieving the severity of the situation, in a way...
Sometimes what we leave unsaid is as important as what we say! x

Saz: I love it when you lurk - It feels very dirty! LOL. I have googlemailed you, precious and left comments on blogs too - I wish you every success today, Saz, all will be well! xxooxx

lakeviewer: LV, I always appreciate your wonderful wisdom, thank you so much for continuing to support my wibbles and wobbles! I hope, I hope you are right, my friend! I think that you are so right... And thank you for all that you have done and are still doing, to support teens and young people at these very vulnerable phases in our and their lives! Bless you, LV! In my former job, I used to push all the time for supportive activities for YPs, arguing the toss with the NIMBY officials, who forget they were ever, ever, that age! So difficult, and so important! I shall really look forward to your intelligence and posting on this, LV! x

Lisa: There isn't an off switch, dahlink! Ever! Bless you for your good thoughts! x

ladyfi: Thank you for trying to keep us updated on darling Braja - I shall be over to yours very, very soon, thank you, so! xxx

sallymandy: True, true! Courage and an ever-thicker skin! x

It takes a lot of courage to parent a teenager.

Woman in a Window said...

Glad he is alright and in one piece. Hope he recovers with lots of love.

Something I wrote earlier...

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