There was quite the learning curve. It was a struggle for both of us on either end of the spectrum. He struggled because he was lonely and he missed us. I struggled parenting mainly alone and missing him. Our plan was for him to fly back at Thanksgiving. Which turns out is a LONG way away from Oct 2.
I learned to do things on my own and thankfully overcame the panic attacks that had often plagued my nights when he was on business trips. (My anxiety is awful at times) I also learned how to ask for help when I needed it.
Monday Oct 27th was one of those days. The night before, Will threw up all over the living room floor so I called Kate, Jim's sister (She stayed with him for 2 weeks then came back) and asked her to watch Will while I drove Ben and Ellie to school. Then I needed to take my mom to the airport. My dad was working and wouldn't be able to take her. The kids school is right by their house so it was no problem at all. I got the kids loaded into the car and left to go pick my mom up. I took a different route this morning because this one was easier to get to their house. (I was going to pick her up first then drop the kids off)
As I was driving down the road a car pulled out of a side street and ran right into the front passenger side of my car. The car was completely dead. Air bag deployed, electrical system was gone, I couldn't even get the key out. I scrambled to find my glasses that had been knocked off my face, got the kids out of the car and across two lanes of traffic to the curb. I made sure they were ok and no one was bleeding. Ellie had a big bruise on her neck. Ben was shaken up but fine. I was sore where the airbag hit me and my arm was bruised and burned. But overall we were fine. Much better than the car was.
Sadly no one stopped to help myself or the other driver who also had a child in the car. I called Jim right away but he didn't answer I don't remember if I left a message for him or not. Then I called 911 to get help. After that I tried Jim again. I knew he was probably in a practice so he couldn't answer. I called my parents house to tell my mom I wouldn't be able to take her to the airport. My dad answered, it turns out he wasn't feeling good that morning so he had decided to wait to go in to work. He was able to take my mom to the airport. Then I called Kate to let her know what had happened and I needed her to come and get Ben. The police had arrived at this time and were planning to take me and Ellie to the hospital to check us out. Jim called me back and I told him what happened. Poor guy was so distraught. He had talked to Kate and knew we were in the accident but didn't know how we were or what was happening. He felt completely helpless being so far away. At some point during this whole time I think I called the school to let them know the kids wouldn't be there and to let the PTA know I wouldn't be there (I was in charge of Red Ribbon Week and obviously wouldn't be there)
Kate arrived at the accident scene and picked up Ben. She let me know she had called her dad and he would be there to help me however I needed too. Ellie and I got to ride in the ambulance to the Emergency Room. Almost immediately my brother arrived to make sure I was ok. I think my dad had called him. He stayed with us until my dad and Jim's dad got there. Because Ellie and I were both patients we both could have 2 visitors at the same time. Two of my friends from the kids school showed up as well to make sure we were ok.
They checked out myself and Ellie to make sure we were fine. They took me down to get an xray on my hand because it hurt to move my finger. Thankfully we were both fine. They released us with prescriptions for pain medicine. My dad said he would go pick up my prescription and Jim's dad took us home.
During this time, Jim talked to his manager who told him it was fine for him to take the time off to come take care of us. He booked a flight for the next day. He really wanted to get on a flight right then but he talked to his dad who told him everything was taken care of and it was ok to come the next day. We were both so grateful for the love and support we received. It was humbling to see how much we were taken care of. Knowing that our families were there and our friends were there to help was such a relief to myself and to Jim.
We were now out a car though. Our friends offered to lend us their car. My parents lent me their truck until the insurance got it taken care of. We went down Tuesday to see the car and find out what the actual damage was. It was surreal and kind of sickening to actually see the car and know how close we were things being so much worse. You could see the Lords hand in everything that happened. Had Will not been sick he would have been in the back seat on the passenger side and Ben would have been in the front passenger seat. As it was, Ben was sitting in the back row in the middle seat and Ellie was behind me so thankfully my children were as far away from the impact as possible. Then my dad wasn't feeling good in the morning so he stayed home which made it possible for my mom to still get to the airport. So many people were there to take care of us. No one was seriously hurt. In fact, there was no blood at all. The other driver and her son, as far as I know were fine. They also had gone to get checked out but both were fine.
Our insurance AAA was amazing! They totaled our car and sent us a check by Friday. On Saturday we went down and got a new car. (which by the way I LOVE!!!)
What was obviously a horrible situation actually turned out ok. We learned that we would be protected and taken care of, we were able to have Jim fly out (which was a much needed visit for the both of us - even without the car accident) and I got a new car that I love. :)
Jim flew back to Georgia on November 1 and we wouldn't see him again until Thanksgiving :(