Lucky is an understatement. Lucky does not describe how I feel.
I never share personal things about my life and I have a hard time opening up to people, however, this is an exception. I feel like I need to share this with everyone.
I was driving back to Tallahassee on Highway 19, a highway I drive all the time. About 60 miles outside of Tallahassee it started pouring rain, nothing out of the usual, nothing I'm not used to. I was driving 20 miles under the speed limit in the inside lane of the Northbound side of the highway. I hit a huge puddle in the road and immediately hydroplaned. I slid across the median, two more lanes of traffic and then my car nose-dived into the ditch. (The picture is terrible and doesn't truly show what happened.)
Everything was a blur. I remember trying to hit my brakes and trying to steer my car away from the ditch. I remember my car jerking from side to side and me screaming. I knew I was going to die. No one goes across a median and two lanes of traffic and into a ditch on the opposite side of the road and walks away unharmed. I remember throwing my hands up to just let it happen. But, it didn't.
After my tires stopped spinning, I got out of the car to assess the damage and call my dad. I was shaking uncontrollably and could barely dial my dad's phone number. I didn't know what to do. It was pouring rain and I was sure my car was totaled. I got out in the pouring rain, unable to feel the cold and walked in the mud all around my car. My car was completely unharmed, just stuck in the mud in the steep ditch. The same rain that caused the wreck created the mud that played a part in possibly saving my life.
After I called my dad I sat in my car waiting on the tow truck to pull me out of the ditch. All I kept saying to myself was that I should have died, how it was a miracle that I'm fine and how grateful I was to still be here.
The accident happened Tuesday afternoon and I've spent the past 24+ hours reflecting on it. I still don't know how I got so incredibly lucky. It just so happens that the median I went across was flat and paved, unlike the steep ditch that acts as a median that was not 10 feet from where I flung across the highway. It just so happens that this was the only time where no one else was on the highway when my car went across two lanes of traffic. It just so happens that the ditch was muddy and my tires got stuck in the mud before hitting a tree.
After thinking about everything, I have a completely different outlook on life and happiness. We seriously cannot take anything for granted -- happiness, friendship, health, our lives. All of these things can be snatched away in an instant. I am going to live my life pursuing what makes me happy and what makes me feel successful. I have spent my life trying to please other people and making sure that all my actions are dedicated to other people's happiness. While I believe it is still important to value your friends and value other people, I am going to start taking more time for myself and the things that make me happy. I have set goals for myself that include finding a fun new hobby and to designate one day out of each month to spend the entire day doing things that make me happy. It is important to be able to take a step back and realize how lucky we all are and to be grateful for everything we have. We cannot let our time here on earth be wasted or not meaningful.
We are here to love and to be loved.
Spread love and spread peace.
I know I am here to do more than just survive and go through the motions of life.
And so are you.