Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Crash and Burn Part III - Or why my daughter will never forget her 30th birthday

After five months of recovery, the last of which included multiple physical therapy sessions, pool therapy and much walking - my oldest was declared ready. On the last day of April we started the process of traveling to New York City so she could resume her life as a New York Apartment Dweller and Borough Commuter. She returned to her apartment building and confidently climbed the stairs (oh those stairs). I stayed with her for four days and observed her her walking from her apartment, down three flights of stairs, up three flights for the elevated train, down two flights for the subway, up three flights and walk to her office. I watched her do it again in reverse. I watched her walk around Manhattan during the evening rush. I watched her stand on the subway ride, giving a seat to older, more balance challenged riders (like me). I had to admit it: she was ready and I would have been holding her back if I had forced her to delay another few weeks.

And that is the last I have to say about her recovery and return to work. Several people who know her professionally also read this blog (Hi fellow friends of Thom Walsh) so to protect her privacy it is not my place to comment further on her personal life. Just know what she is recovered and doing well.

About the Crash:
Lauren's 30th birthday was the day we moved her belongings back into her apartment. Afterwards we wanted to have lunch and then return the rental car. We decided on a seafood restaurant on City Island in the Bronx. Sadly, I have been gone from City Island so long I forgot how backed up the traffic  can get on weekends.  The left lane was moving. I decided to move into the left lane so that I could exit the area when we reached the traffic circle. I did not see anyone approaching from behind in the left lane. I turned the wheel and stepped on the gas . . . and hit a car passing me in the left lane. My front bumper and driver's fender collided with her front passenger bumper and wheel well.

No one was hurt. THAT is the only important thing said me, the police, the other driver, insurance company and the rental car company. Neither car was moving very fast. It was a case of the noise of the crash far exceeding the damage. Because there were no injuries we had to wait for the police to be free to come. There must have been a great deal going on that day because it took over 2 hours for them to arrive and then 40 minutes to fill out the paperwork. Neither driver was cited. Both cars are being repaired. Thank God for insurance.

We never did get lunch. We returned the rental car to the airport in White Plains one minute before the late fee could take effect, then took a taxi to Metro North into Grand Central and then the subway to the apartment. We got to her home at 9:00 pm and ordered dinner from the local diner.

Lauren plans to spend her next birthday NOT getting into a car.



Scooter Hussy said...

Glad your daughter is healing and that nobody was injured in the crash!

Vickie said...

So great she was able to fully recover. And to recover to be able to handle NY level of walking, stairs. Because that is a lot. A whole lot.

Friend's daughter just finished recovery and is headed back to volleyball and college (this fall) which is a similar level of pounding feet. Different amount than a normal life. She seems to have fully healed and no residual pain/trouble. We all were holding our breath. Her biggest challenge right now is building ankle strength. They have her working with weights and pool walking in addition to PT exercises.

My youngest is just getting ready to get driver's license. We have been out parallel parking and backing in and out of spots. This is my third round of teaching a kid to drive. I am not a nervous nelly when they drive. But backing up, when anyone does it, always is a bit of a gamble, wondering if other people are paying attention to what they are doing. Motorcycles seem to be the worst, riders squeeze places they should not. If they drove as if the needed same space as a car (passing for example) they would be a lot safer.

Did you have a hard adjust to your daughter being gone again? AFTERS can be hard.

Jane Cartelli said...

Vickie: My husband taught my oldest to drive and then she would not go for the license because she didn't want one. She moved to NYC for college and never looked back at getting a licence. You could not have stopped me from getting my driver's license on the first day I was eligible so this is alien behavior to me. I taught my youngest to drive. She learned to drive in a cemetery. Less chance of causing damage there. :-) Took the stress off me. For highway driving and parking we got her a professional teacher (again, less stress for me).

I thought the afters would be harder but I was already so far down the rabbit hole I barely had them. It helped that my husband dismantled the office she established in our home while I was in NYC. It also helped that someone else came to use the guest room so that it transformed from her room back to other usage without a break.

When I see something of hers randomly around the house I pause and feel that sadness of missing her presence for a moment and then I thank God that she is returned to her life and try to move on.

I am five days sugar free now and doing the best I can one day at a time.