So, me and my friends, used to have a good time riding our cycles all over the car park, chasing each other or forming groups and chasing members of the other group. In one such game where I was racing with another friend, we were required to go straight, take a U turn near one concrete pillar and then come back to the starting point. Both of us were neck to neck and somehow one split second just before we could take a turn, he went one step ahead of me, took a U turn, I was close behind him, he turned just in time to avoid colliding with the other pillar to our right. Since he came in my way all of a sudden, I wanted to avoid colliding, and turned right, the only alternative I had, and went straight for it. Bang. I succeeded in trying to avoid colliding with my friend and I went and hit the concrete pillar bang on. I fell down with my cycle with and the impact was more, mainly because of the speed with which I had hit the pillar, and fell right on the concrete floor with the left side of my face hitting the floor directly. I knew my face was bleeding and my I couldn’t see with my left eye. I was crying profusely, and the innocent child in me thought, that was this was the end, and I visualized the faces my Mom, Dad and Sis
For those who wanted to know the other 3 life threatening situations I’d mentioned in ‘Someone’s Blunder Your Tragedy’,this post is for you all. The other 2 incidents will also be posted, shortly.
I guess I had watched a lot of movies then, because, when I was 10, I thought Accident meant, any two moving vehicles crashing or a moving vehicle crashing with, irrespective of the place, irrespective of the intensity of the crash, irrespective of the speed at which they collide. And I’d watched enough cinemas to know that accident always resulted in death, however trivial it was.
It was just a few days after Diwali. We were in Cochin then, Me, My mom, dad and sis. Just the day before, we returned to Cochin after having a grand Diwali Celebrations at Chennai, my hometown. We lived in this flat, which had ample space for parking cars and two-wheeler. And there were 4 concrete surrounding every car.
My friends came running, but poor them, they did not know what to do, and were all more scared than I was. But I could hear them all saying, Ash don’t cry, its ok, nothing will happen. But I knew something really bad had happened. Since I think a lot, sometimes complicating even simple things, I immediately thought that I had been a very bad girl and that was the reason God chose to punish me( I was and am, God Fearing, and thanks to the stories where the good people are rewarded, and the bad ones punished, I concluded that way) and felt bad for not being a good person, like my sister, who by God’s grace did not have to endure the pain of such injuries, just because she was a good girl( Ignoring the fact that she was by nature, much more careful in handling things, than me).
Having heard the sudden commotion of a cycle falling, my friends alighting from their cycles and running, one kid wailing loudly, and many other kids talking loudly, The Watchman realized something was not right and came running from the gate towards us. The last of what I could vaguely make out was, the Watchman Uncle running towards me, asking everyone what happened, asking someone to call my Mother. After that I did not faint, I was fully conscious, but I guess I was engulfed by the fear of what would happen, that apart from the silent tears and the silent sounds of my sobbing, my face went blank.( I was told this, later)
Since my face was expressionless, my friends later told me that they got even more scared.Then my mom came downstairs, after my friends had called my mom and informed them of what happened. My mom and the Watchman Uncle spared no time in taking me to a doctor who was just down the street. My Mother realized that I was not in much danger, not the way my friends, in their fear had portrayed to them. Upon reaching the Doctors’ clinic, the doctor cleaned up my wounds, in my knees, hand and specially my face. Because of the impact with which I fell, the left side of my face, the skin between my left eye and left ear was completely bruised and my Left eye was almost closed and bloated.
I vaguely remember the doctor asking me something, and for the first and last and only time I can remember, I could not open my mouth and speak, or rather, I did not want to speak. He gave me an injection since I’d fallen on the pathway, to avoid infection. I was( to a little bit, even now) so damn scared of these injections, that even in my semi conscious state I tried to move my hands away from the needle, but my Mom held my hand tight, the doctor injected the needle and I was in excruciating pain. He then cleaned up my wounds, asked me to walk and shake all my hands and limbs to make sure there was no major injury to the bones, asked me to turn round in circles and tell him when I felt dizzy. After all this, he said, Luckily even after the fall, Nothing was wrong with me, except for some swelling in my ankle and elbow and then told me some stuff about I was lucky but he asked me to stay careful while driving cycle in the future.
He then went on to talk about something, I don’t exactly remember what it was, But I remember that I came out of the clinic feeling much better, the fear was evaporating and I knew I had survived that day. I came back to our Apartment, I was happy that I did not die, but there was this dizziness and pain, due to the impact of the fall. All my friends were waiting near the car park, waiting for my mother and me to come by, to confirm for sure that I was all right and that I was not in danger. I smiled at them. They smiled at me, again saying, don’t worry, come and play tomorrow, take rest now.
When I was thinking about this incident, while writing this post, I couldn’t help laughing and thinking of how innocent and how scared I was way back then. When I think about it now, I would not call this as a Life threatening situation, but for the Ash who was then, 11 years back, this was indeed a Traumatic Incident.