Me, Myself, and I

Emily - Nevada City, California
Entered on May 8, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in myself. This means that I believe in every characteristic that makes me who I am. Strength, determination and faith are all words that describe me. I did not know this until a year and a half ago when these traits were put to the test.

It was 5:38 pm on December 6, 2006. As I sat at the stop sign, I did not see anyone coming. After I stepped on the gas I saw him, but by then it was too late; I was already in the way. When our vehicles collided, I was knocked unconscious and my body was smashed. The truck hit my small sedan on the driver’s side door. I was showing barely any vital signs and the EMTs that arrived to the scene thought that I was going to die. The EMTs placed me in a helicopter and I was flown to a hospital nearly 45 miles from my home. Immediately the doctors performed surgery to save my life. When the doctor cut my lifeless body open, he found my spleen had ruptured, my left lung had collapsed, my left ovary was ripped open, and nearly every organ was out of place and damaged. My pelvis had broken in two places and shattered in another place. Eight of my ribs were cracked. My spleen was extracted and my bones were mended with screws. I woke up a week later in my hospital bed with metal bars, called an external fixator, sticking out of my hips, holding them together. I had no idea what had happened.

This is when I started believing. It was a shock to wake up in an unfamiliar place with metal bars coming out of my waist line and several tubes coming out of different parts of my body. There were more machines hooked up to me than I knew existed. I had to find strength and courage inside myself. I was determined to fully recover. For three months I was in a wheel chair and had to learn to walk all over again. I took more medication during those months than I could have ever imagined taking in a lifetime. This was by far the biggest struggle I had ever encountered.

After experiencing an event that brought me so close to death, I feel like I can do anything. I pulled through my traumatic car accident faster and better than was expected. Not only was the crash physically devastating, it was emotionally draining. Since I believed in myself and was determined to fully recover, I accomplished the most incredible goal of my life: I got better. I still believe in myself, and I can get through any hardships in life.