Friday, February 8, 2008


All the parents were late to daycare that day. It was a beautiful late June afternoon when I headed out from work. I packed up my office with bright thoughts of the coming weekend and what fun Sugarplum and I would have hanging out at my best friends B's house. I tossed my backpack and purse in the trunk, plugged in my cell phone headset and dialed up B on my way out of work as I so often do.

The children didn't understand why I was upset when I arrived. I assured them all as best I could that I would be alright. They were skeptical. They knew someone was hurt.

On the freeway there had been an accident. It was in a common spot with a short space to change lanes for oncoming and exiting traffic. I got past it and we all cruised back up to normal speed. As I was reaching full free-way speed, I saw the smoke. Someone had just rear-ended someone else. I instinctively took my foot off the gas. Then I saw her.

"Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. B I have to go" I heard my own voice telling her what I'd just seen still not completely believing it. I pulled over. I tried to call 911 but couldn't get through.

With traffic at a stand still behind me, I finally was able to get out of my car. I stood right next to my trunk and got through to 911. Emergency crews were already en route. Several people had stopped and were at the scene. A few crouched over her body searching for signs of life. Someone else was directing traffic off the freeway. The firetrucks arrived. The highway patrol arrived. I stood.. watching.. waiting.. unsure. There was no movement. I could see the red pool against the dark pavement. It was too big.

I saw the officer with the yellow tarp. Then gasps as she moved. She was waking up. I started to approach and was sent back to my car. The fire chief came to me. Was I witness? Kind of. The highway patrol officer came to speak to me. Did I know which car hit her? I stared back. Had I seen it happen? No. I honestly didn't know. I saw her fall and roll.. but I didn't see exactly where she came from. I was sent on my way.

For days I could not shake the image of the woman on the road. I drive the same route every day. Every day I think of her. Every day I pray for her.