second life

It was my first ever accident in my 35 years of existence.

Ganun pala pakiramdam. It was scary.  Wish I could use a more descriptive word or metaphor or be more poetic to describe my experience.  But it was really scary, that’s for sure.

It happened while I was getting out from a jeepney in Litex, Quezon City.  I was carrying my big, bulky bag and my netbook and the hassle of riding a jeepney is that the pathway is so narrow and its ceiling is low-level you have to be mindful not to step on anyone’s toes or hit a knee you have to bend yourself like a hunchback and see where you’re walking on in order to get in and out safely.  Riding a jeepney has been a part of my life.

As I tried not to hit any knee while I come out, while carrying my stuff, there were these steps that I had to climb down to.  So as I was climbing down, I just don’t know what happened, maybe I had a misstep or became out of balance that I fell and quickly dived into the pavement.  And there I was hugging the ground, with my things scattered all over, including my left shoe and shattered sunglasses.  It was embarrassing.

Then somebody lifted me up (I learned later it was the konduktor) and the driver of the jeepney ran towards me to ask me if I was alright.  I said I was okay thinking I only had bruises. Then he left. I remember  there were people surrounding me then I felt this excruciating pain at my left elbow it made me weak that I had to kneel down.  I thought I just suffered a large wound but when I checked I discovered something more shocking–the bone in my elbow got dislocated!

And while this was going on I remember the mediation that I was supposed to attend later that day between me and this “collenemy” to be facilitated by our director.  I am sad that it didn’t push through because of my accident.  While this was going on I worried more about my netbook, my work saved in there and not yet finished.

But my left arm hurts like hell so I asked one lady passenger (I learned later her name was Lorna), the one who picked up my things, if she could bring me to the hospital.  She reluctantly said yes. (She was in a panic mode when we got into a taxi so I tried to relax. She was the one assisting me to pay for my sling, my xray at the cashier, and to charge my phone at the hospital.  When she was able to contact my younger brother and my father, that’s when she decided to leave me for she has a meeting later that day.  I said thank you and asked for her number and address.)

At the hospital, a doctor requested me to lay on my chest.  And when I did he just suddenly grabbed my broken arm then did something to it.  I growled.  I felt or heard a snapped.  The doctor said my bone has been relocated (without anesthesia mind you!) but needed an xray to make sure.  I also needed a CT scan to check that there was no internal bleeding in my brain.  Thank God the results are okay–my bone is not broken, but since it got dislocated and it’s swelling I was advised to wear a cast and a sling for 3 to 6 weeks for it to return to normal.  For it to heal.

I am on  sick leave for three days now because of the accident.  I got abrasions on my face, an aching left foot, and a weak left arm in a cast.  In fact as  I write this, I am using only my right hand to type letters one at a time.  And there are things I’ve realized during/after the accident.

First, that even in desperate times, there are opportunistic people who would take advantage of your situation.  I didn’t tell you that the taxi driver who drove me and Ms. Lorna, who drove like an ambulance driver, attempted to overcharge us of P300 taxi fare instead of P207.  Ms. Lorna just gave the driver P220 while telling him to have compassion to me.

Second, that I am lucky I got extra cash.  I didn’t tell you that I paid for all my medical expenses (except for the CT scan wherein the other half of the expense was shouldered by my father), including the taxi fare, because I had P3000 in my wallet  intended supposedly for other things.

Third, that whenever I leave home, I must make it a point that my cellphone is fully charged and with load! Because when the accident happened my phone was dead.  Good thing I was able to turn it on and was able to retrieve the number of my brother which I gave to Ms. Lorna, the woman who helped me.  Seconds later my phone completely died.  But there was another problem.  Ms. Lorna didn’t have load! She was able to borrow the taxi driver’s cellphone with unlimited text and call but she couldn’t get through.  Signal problem, I guess.  But you know what, we really cannot say that we are ready to face an accident.  Nobody’s really prepared when an accident happens.  If it happens, it just happens.  And we just deal with it accordingly with a hope of surviving.

And last but not the least, that despite my misfortune, I am still alive and writing about it here.  My friend’s boyfriend told me that I was saved by an angel.  He said it could have been worse.  He said I am lucky that the pavement I dived into didn’t have any pointed object that could have pierced me to death.   Or a speeding jeep that would have ran me over killing me or if not, paralyzed me for life.  He said I am lucky I didn’t hit my head towards the cement and lose consciousness then become brain damaged.

I didn’t know that he believes in angels, something that I’ve already forgotten about because of too much preoccupation with some issues and problems at work.  He said this is my second life.  Because it could have been worse.

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