Saturday, February 11, 2012

January 31, 2012

A day that shall forever live in infamy in my life. Ever since that night, on my nightly drive to work, I have been transformed. For the time being, I cannot even retreat to my favorite pastime of crochet. I was driving to work on a dark, unlit "country" road; this is a misnomer, as it is a well traveled road between Ocala/Dunnellon and Gainesville. Many people travel this road daily; the pay is better in G'ville than Ocala, not to mention Gator Fever resides up there.
I left for work at my typical 9:45-9:50 pm time frame. I am supposed to be at work at 10:30, and typically arrive 10 minutes late; so does everyone else. I got in my car, and decided to take the route of Hwy 40 to Hwy 41 North. Sometimes cut through Lake Tropicana, a subdivision that is 1 mile shorter and 5 minutes faster, but a lot of turns and curves. At Christmastime, it's fun to see the lights (BTW, some of them are still up....and on! Mine are up, but hubby doesn't want them plugged in......sigh....)
Anyhow, I set my cruise control at the Levy-Marion County line for the set speed limit of 60 mph. I was following a nondescript SUV that was either black, green or dark blue. About a mile north of the county lines, the lead vehicle swerved to the left; I followed suit, thinking I was going to avoid some silly possum curled into a ball or deer or fox. The next thing I know, I see a figure put up his right arm and take a step toward my car. THUMP.....I hit the figure, continue to travel to the left, come to a hysterical stop on the southbound side of the road. To make a horrifically long story short, I had hit and killed a pedestrian who happened to be standing in the middle of my travel lane. It took me 20 minutes from impact to the time the sheriff's dept. arrived and found the gentleman laying in the ditch.
The dispatcher had called my husband, who thankfully was still awake to come to my side. I have nothing but praise for all of the rescue personnel who not only stood by me to console me, but stayed with the victim of the crash. It has been a horrible 10 days for me, but I'm sure it is worse for this man's family. I have no words to describe the loss I feel. I cannot concentrate on many tasks; I can work for two days and need a day off. Luckily, everyone I know and love has been very supportive to make sure I'm ok. I was reassured that evening by the police, FHP, and EMT's that I did all I could to avoid and unseen person in the road. From the damage to my car, I can see that if I swerved another two feet to the left, I would not have had this happen. I wish I had had the foresight to swerve farther to the left. Thank goodness there was no other traffic in either direction....
So please forgive me if I am absent from the crafting world for awhile. I find it difficult to concentrate and focus on many tasks. The one thing that gave me solace, crocheting, I cannot even bring myself to pick up a hook. I know this road will be a tough one; luckily, I have a great support system of family and friends who are willing to listen at the drop of a hat. I hope and pray every day that this man's family can find solace. I mourn their loss deeply, knowing that if I had been 5 minutes sooner or later, this horrible tragedy may have been avoided.
God bless you all and thank you in advance for your thoughts and prayers, not only for me, but for the gentleman and his family.


Bethany said...

My heart goes out to you. Try not to be to hard on yourself. God knows your heart and knows it wasn't intentional. I will remember you and the man's family in my prayers.

ponykeg19 said...

thank you, Bethany. Everyone's good thoughts and tons of prayers are doing wonders to help me through this!!!