Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Pilgrimage Has Gained Momentum

Here is Coadster with her bright pink cast on both legs. I'm wearing some totally attractive sweatpants to hide the lovely roadrash on the side of my leg that would later turn into an extremely sexy scar.

This is kind of late this year, but fifteen years ago on October fourth, Coadster (who was twenty weeks old at the time) and I got into a bizarre horse and buggy accident. Apparently, when I go through something horrible, my brain protects me by not remembering it. I don't have much recollection of the accident. I did suffer a concussion and Coadster broke both of her legs.

Many, many years ago, I wrote a little fictiony piece about it, to try and piece together what happened. I shared part of it last year on my other blog and then deleted it, (that was the post my friend Sara was looking for) so I'll copy a different part of it tonight. Just for fill-in, We were on with this woman named Marla who worked with me at the coffee/ice cream shop. A guy named Arlen was driving the buggy when the horses got loose. We just happened to be going down a steep hill at the time. Ready? Okaaay!:

"Ah Hell," Arlen says. I see the horses running off, no longer connected to the buggy. Arlen is yanked out of the wagon still steadfastly holding on to the reins and trails behind the horses before he is left with a dislocated shoulder and broken arm in their wake. The buggy keeps going faster.

"Shit!" Marla yells and jumps off the side. Coadster and I are alone. She is crying. I think I am too. We are going too fast now for me to safely jump. The horses are gone, so I figure at some point we'll reach the bottom of the hill and stop. I have to press my feet hard to the floorboards to keep us from getting propelled out of the buggy. I feel my stomach fall and I wish it would drop to my feet to add weight.

This is where things get hazy. It feels like we're flying. I can't hold onto the floor any more and out we go. I can see it all in slow motion and I know exactly where we'll land and how it will feel. I try to keep Coadster in my arms but she starts to slide down my front. When we hit the ground I hear a strange crunching sound and taste the strong iron of my own blood in my mouth. Everything goes black and disappears.

I wake up and hurt. All I know is pain. I panic. There is something awful that happened. I am very familiar with this feeling of dread. There is a loud wailing far away. It is somehow comforting to hear but I don't know what it is. Something very bad has happened. I'm too tired to think and then things get dark again.

I come to again and see Marla. She's crying. She is standing between two ambulances. "At first it looked like the wagon ran over the baby, but then I realized that it was just the white sweater she was wrapped in. I probably shouldn't have picked her up, but I wasn't thinking too clearly. Is Coadster going to be okay?" She is talking to a paramedic. I'm afraid to hear the answer.

I'm stopping it here, because this post is already way too long and you all know the answer since she's fifteen now, and you just saw her pictures from Homecoming. I think you get the idea anyhow, it basically sucked and was really scary. The end.


Remiman said...

Yes, that is some scary shit! Years ago, in our hippie days, we got into an accident in our VW bus. Almost went over a guard rail and down a ravene. D. wacked her head and doesn't remember anything about the accident, not even before we smacked the guard rail. I think that type of amnesia is quite common.

not fainthearted said...

omg that is horrible. sometimes it really is a good thing not to remember the details though, huh?

Stepping Over the Junk said...

I just about had a heart attack just reading this! Glad you all are okay by now!

Killer said...

So did they replace Coadsters legs with bionic ones?

Wait...you are probably not allowed to answer that truthfully.

The Lady Who Doesn't Lunch: said...

I'm glad story begins with a picture of you both together and smiling. I'm lucky that when I had my accident it was so fast I didn't know what hit me. I can't imagine (well, now I can since you wrote it so well) those horrifying moments of knowing, but still not knowing what is to come.

Margaret said...

have ya'll ridden in a horse drawn buggy since?

Tara said...

Holy crap, Churlita, how terrifying! Does Coadster remember any of it or still talk about it?

booda baby said...

I don't want to be the one to ask why you're playing Halo when you could be writing those short stories that are so, soooo simple and real and super loaded with 'come on in and sit down with me' entry points and all the emotional rewards a reader could want. No. I don't want to be that one, asking why you're not writing short stories. Not me. No way.

(okay. good god. why not? They're gold.)

David in DC said...

Dunno that booda baby but she sure makes a WHOLE LOTTA SENSE.

laura b. said...

That is an amazing story! Did strangers on the street stop you and ask you about your daughter's casts? I mean, I used to get that when one of my kids had a scabby knee....but double casts!

Mrs. Big Hairy Woman said...

Hey if its any consolation I got run over by a hay wagon when I was about 12.. I just missed the back wheel with all the weight on the back.. I could have been killed.. I walked away without a broken bone and mostly abrasions and cuts and bruises... Its unfortunate that you and Coadster were hurt.. Sometimes forgetting is better thana remembering...She has turned out just fine from the looks of things....

Neil said...

That must have been scary as hell. I wouldn't want to remember the details, either. Although I have to admit I've never heard of a real-life story involving a horse and buggy.

TLB said...

I remember this story from the old blog, and it was just as scary then. I can't imagine how scared you must have been.

Churlita said...


Wow. I think any accident sucks. I'm sorry to hear about you and D.'s.


Don't get me wrong. It's not like I want to remember it.


I could only post this because we're both okay now.


Totally. And they even make that weird noise when she runs too. It's awesome.


Can you write a post about your accident? I didn't know you had one.


The answer to that is never again.


She was only a baby. So, neither one of us remember it and I think it's just as well.

Booda Baby,

Thanks. Couldn't I do both? I still write stories now and again, but without ever getting published, no one will ever read them and I don't get any feedback. That's what the blog is for, to get me to write every day and so I don't feel like I'm writing in a vacuum.


Man you guys are all so nice.


Oh yeah. My friends used to call her the Y baby because of her casts.


Oh my gosh. That's terrible. I'm glad you're okay.


That's because you don't live in Amish country. I'm sure it's not as common in LA or NY.


I was totally out of my mind...Even more so than usual.