Post # 1
As I finish my last semester of college, I am left to write one last research paper. Directed to choose something of particular meaning for the topic, I chose Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. At times, it stills haunts me. I remember a day I shouldn’t have lived to tell about, yet I walked away completely unharmed. Here’s my story, an exerpt from my final research paper:
When I was seventeen years old, I saw my life flash before my eyes; sometimes I wonder how I am still alive. My cheerleading squad began practice as always; we headed to the school’s upper level gym and began to compact the expanded bleachers as is done almost daily. The lock mechanism broke, and as the lower half of the bleachers moved inward, the upper half remained teetering, suspended above our heads. In a lapse of judgment, our coaches directed several girls to scale the bleachers and try to unlock the mechanism. No sooner did most of the girls reach the floor did the metal give way and the massive metal wall crashed down toward my squad. Without thinking, I ran to the side to escape the falling debris, underneath the second set of bleachers. Somehow, the metal connecting the two sets broke.. it miraculously remained standing. As the girls stood around in tears, a small leg was noticed protruding from the rubble. In a last ditch effort, I begged the girls to help me lift the metal from her frail body. To no avail, I sprinted, though it seemed more like flying, to the trainers office to call for help and led the girl’s basketball team to the scene. Together we freed her from the prison that held her body and waited anxiously for the medical and emergency crews to arrive. Amiss a mass of pointed metal and heavy bars, her tiny body squeezed into a hole only big enough for her to fit. Though terribly injured, she eventually made a full recovery. Only several were majorly injured, but each of us were scarred psychologically. At the sound of metal crashing I cannot help but break into tears, remembering that day. I honestly have no idea how I survived.
While I was always a Christian, this day taught me true faith. I believe in God.
Have any other bees ever survived insurmountable circumstances?
** Just to edit: It stills makes me sad. I can still cry over it. But really, I’m fine now. It gave me peace in my life. It taught me to appreciate every day, every hour, every minute. I just wanted to share my story, and see if anyone else can relate!
Post # 3
I am really sorry that that happened to you, and wish for you peace and an eventuall full recovery.
Post # 4
I’m sorry you and your friends had to go through this terrible accident and i’m so glad no body was killed. My SO was in a major car accident 2 years ago and him and his friends walked from it, the emergency services couldn’t believe it, my SO has an ongoing injury vdue to the crash but he escaped with his life.
He is still suffers with the post traumatic stress now, he mainly has nightmares and wakes up in a sweat and has trouble when in cars with ppl driving that he isn’t used to like taxi drivers, or when I accidently clip the wheel on a curb.
I do hope you feel better soon big hugs x
Post # 5
- Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House
It isn’t a matter of should and shouldn’t- you are alive, and therefore you should be. Just be grateful every day that you weren’t hurt and that your friend recovered.
Post # 6
In January of last year, I was walking home after work on the day of a snowstorm that had dumped about a foot of snow. It had stopped snowing but the wind had picked up. In my memory, one moment I was walking down the sidewalk, and the next I was facedown in a snowbank. As I struggled to orient myself, I realized that I couldn’t get up because there was a huge tree limb pinning me down. I started calling for help, and some people came and dragged it off of me (I don’t know how long this took though). I sat up and someone called 911. In the meantime, the people who had gathered were worried about me getting cold and so they helped me walk to the nearest building to wait for the ambulance. In retrospect, I must have been terribly concussed because if I was anywhere near “with it” I wouldn’t have let anyone move me with a potential head/spine injury! I wish I could thank those people- I know they meant well even though it’s very wrong to move someone in that situation.
The paramedics collared and backboarded me and took me to the nearest hospital (thankfully, a top-ranked teaching hospital). It turned out that I had a 2 inch gash on the crown of my head, a concussion, and 2 fractured vertebrae (C7 and T1). Incredibly, I had no spinal cord damage. They stapled my head shut, kept me overnight, and put me in this horrible chin-to-waist brace that I had to wear 24 hours a day for 2.5 months.
My orthopaedic surgeon told me that it was a miracle that I was alive, let alone not paralyzed. With a lot of physical therapy and a ton of help from my boyfriend (seriously, he dressed me and learned to wash and blow dry my hair!), I made a full recovery.
Sometimes I still run by that tree and shake my fist at it as I go by!
Post # 7
@vermonster: Incredible story! So glad you survived and recovered fully!
Post # 8
@OnceUponATime: I hope you can eventually heal from the emotional trauma. Sorry that happened.
Post # 9
Oh that’s scary! I’m sorry you had to go through that but you are very brave for sharing your story. And it’s a wonderful thing it brought your closer to your faith.
I’ve had a few near death experiences and have developed PTSD from one and well I just don’t think I should get into it. I’m trying to move on with my life from that. But my experiences weren’t accident but were inflicted by human beings close to me and I’ve been working on moving on with my life.
But a couple years ago I was in a serious car accident. I was sleeping in the passenger seat and my FI driving and wake up to him screaming. I open my eyes and a tow truck is in our lane just feet from the car. We swerved off the road hit wet grass and went bck onto the road and tboned an explorer. Thankfully we were not injured but the people in the other car were just returning from the hospital from surgery and the accident interrupted their healing process.
A day before that FI and I were driving and witnessed a wreck before the paramedics arrived. It was incredibly sad. A car full of young adults on their way to a wedding. The bridesmaids were in the car. When we got close to the car everyone was outside and one of the bridesmaids was standing outside screaming while a man held her back. She was hysterical crying. I looked in the car and there was bridesmaid 3, head against the glass blood all over the car in the back seat, she wasn’t moving. It was so incredibly sad. I couldn’t shake the sorrow I felt for them. The cops showed up moments later.
The next day we had our accident. PTSD got really bad, I could cringe when I would be near a car even, too afraid to go in a car. But with a lot of work I’ve been able to over come it. I still wont sleep in a car though.
I’m sorry for your experience. Near death experiences are helpful in getting closer to your faith. I had two closer calls after the accident two years ago and my faith is stronger than it has ever been
Post # 10
Talking about it through the years has helped a lot. I hope it helps you ladies too.
@vermonster: So inspiring. Especially that you’re running right past it now. Way to push through!
@pinkgreenandyellow: I can only imagine how hard it must have been to see that and THEN experience something similar yourself. I hope that you continue to recover from those who hurt you also.
I know the feeling of now wanting to go into a car. None of us wanted to go back onto the court. We basically had a counselor make us sit on the bleachers to recover. It is definitely not easy to go through.
Post # 11
@OnceUponATime: It’s funny, because I have thought about the likelihood that I could develop PTSD from an experience like that, but I don’t have any symptoms. One of the reasons that I have come up with is that because of the concussion, I can’t remember the limb hitting me. I don’t even remember hearing it crack (and it must have been a loud one, it was a huge limb about 10″ in diameter and 25′ long and fell from about 16′). The effects of the concussion somewhat insulated me from the panic and fear that one would normally feel in that situation- I was just dazed.
The only thing that I think has changed about me emotionally is that I think more about the fragility of life now and how a total freak accident can happen at any time. I worry more when my guy doesn’t arrive home or call me when I’m expecting him to. I also make sure to always say “I love you” when I part from him or my parents- it’s a morbid thing to think, but you never know when those parting words will be your last. Same concept as not going to bed angry, I suppose.
Post # 12
My daughter almost died as a baby, (this happened suddenly, she was not sick prior to what happened, and I was shell-shocked) and I was in therapy for like two years so I would stop waking myself up every 20 minutes at night making sure she was breathing.
I didn’t find Jesus or anything, but it definitely changed my attitude about parenthood. I don’t stress stupid things, I never tuck her in without telling her I love her. It just changed a lot about me as a person.
Post # 13
We all have different ways of dealing with near death experiences. I’m sad to say mine has made me more angry than anything else.
I was hit by a bus when I was 16 and have complete memory loss of what happened. Because it happened in a country where it is very difficult to sue the government (and it was a public bus), I never got paid any reparations, my parents had to cover all my health costs and we weren’t even allowed to contact any witnesses to find out what had happened. They basically denied me closure, or even an explanation.
The worst however, for me, has been the fact that, while traffic accidents aren’t in themselves terribly rare and that, all in all, the odds of getting hit by a vehicle (even if it is a bus), aren’t really all that ridiculous, it is for some reason something that movies are able to portray, over and over again, as this silly pratfall kind of joke (c.f. end of Mean Girls, end of One Day, a bunch of TV series’..)
In fact, it’s so much the case that when I returned to school after it (I was never a popular kid), the idiots in my class thought it would be funny to refer to me as “the girl that faceplanted into a bus” and other crap..
Sorry, my anger’s showing again. I’m really not an angry person, generally, but I can’t help but be resentful that out of all the near death experiences, I somehow ended up with the one it’s ok to make fun of. ………………….. ugh
Post # 14
Years ago, I was in my school cafeteria when a man walked in armed with automatic weapons and started shooting students. I had a hard time being in crowds for a while, or feeling safe outside of the house. Loud unexpected noises like a door slamming could reduce me to tears and I was constantly terrified that I or someone I loved would get hurt. I remember that in the days after the shooting, while we were all trying to come to grips with what happened, I was just really cold. I couldn’t stop shivering. Two things have stayed with me through the years. One is that I really don’t like things being pointed or thrown quickly in my direction and the second is the memory of running past a guy who was alive but who I had seen get shot in the neck. We made eye contact and the look in his eyes has stayed with me. He didn’t looked scared, he just looked sad.
Post # 15
@mousewife-in-training: I would be angry about that too. Clearly in your case it was negligence- as well as being preventable and reconcilable. The fact that nobody was held responsible is wrong and I think it is natural to feel angry about it.