Wednesday, September 15, 2010

It’s been a while


********************LONG POST WARNING************************

Oh man, I know it’s been forever. I’m so mad at myself. The point of the blog was to chronicle my everyday life to remember my first year in Erie.

Let’s see, I suppose the biggest happening since my last post was the death of Daisy. I know it’s probably not news to anyone reading this, but I was in a car accident on September 3rd.

I don’t remember how we got in the accident.

If you are interested, here is what I do remember.

I only remember being in the left lane. Then impact. I remember spinning. Breaking glass. Metal scraping metal. Then stopping facing a different direction than I had started in.

Niki was in the passenger seat. The car hit her.

I looked over at Niki and she was in pain. She kept saying, “Jenna, you’re bleeding.” I didn’t know what she was talking about.


I was able to move a little, so I grabbed Niki’s phone and called 911. I was put on hold.

At that moment an angel appeared. Knocking on my window was Ann. Our angel. I couldn’t figure out if I should roll down my window or open the door. I rolled down the window.

Ann said, “Hi hunny. My name is Ann. I am a certified CPR instructor. I saw the accident. I am going to stay with you until the ambulance gets here. Is that ok?”

I just stared at her. I asked her what happened. She said she didn’t know. She told me I was bleeding. I saw blood on my stomach. Ann asked me my name and my friends name. She had such a soothing voice. Niki was still moaning in pain. The door was pinned against her right side.

Ann asked if there was anyone she could call. I told her I just moved here. I didn’t know anyone. I really don’t know why I said that. I know my coworkers and I would trust them with my life. I love them like family, especially after everything they did for me.

I told Ann to call Meredith. I knew Meredith was on duty so she would be around her phone. Ann called. Meredith didn’t answer. Ann left a message.

Then a police officer arrived. He talked to me, but I don’t remember about what. Then I heard the ambulances. A paramedic team was then at my door. A paramedic got in the back seat and wrapped a neck brace around me. Another paramedic team covered Niki in a yellow blanket and started cutting the door off of the car. Then my paramedic team told me they would be laying me on a backboard. Mr. Paramedic told me he was going to lift me by my belt loops. I remember thinking that was funny.


So before I know it, I’m laying on a stretcher in the middle of Peach Street staring at the night sky. I only had one flip flop on. I don’t drive with a flip flop on my right foot. I remember that I was nervous they wouldn’t put me in the ambulance with both flips – but they did.

I was loaded into the ambulance and strapped down. They asked me what hospital I wanted to go to. I laughed and said, “A good one.” There were IVs going in, poking and prodding and lots of questions. It was so hot in there. I thought I was going to puke. They gave me an oxygen mask. It was hard to speak. They gave me a hard time for being a Ravens fan. I hoped it wouldn’t impact their care of me. It didn’t. They were amazing.

So one of two things happened. Ambulances are soundproof or we didn’t ride with the sirens on. Not sure which is true.

After what felt like hours we got to the hospital. Apparently, Meredith had beaten the ambulance by a good 10 minutes. She was in the waiting room shaking. The message Ann left her just said her friend Jenna was in a car accident and was going to Hammot. Poor Meredith. She had so many scenerios going through her head.


So I’m being wheeled into the hospital and my paramedics are telling the nurses that I’m a Ravens fan. Mr. Paramedic gave me a tour of the ceiling of the hospital. It was funny.

So I get in a room and my vitals are taken, questions are asked, I’m put on a bed. The Nurse was very nice. She asked me where I hurt. She asked if she could put me in a gown. As she was putting the gown on me, glass was falling out of my clothes. It was everywhere. It was sticking to me.

The nurse leaves me to wait for the doctor. The curtain to my room is pushed aside and a nurse says, “A coworker?” I said, “A coworker what?” She said, “ A coworker is here to see you?” I said, “MEREDITH! PLEASE LET HER COME IN!” So this is where I learned that Meredith is squeamish and doesn’t like to be touched. (Love you, Mer :))

She looked at me and looked like she was going to cry or puke. I couldn’t tell which. This is a good time to say that I had a gash above my eyebrow. Headwounds bleed a lot. The blood was all over my face, down my gown and pooled on the stomach of the gown. I didn’t know that. Not until Meredith pointed it out. She said it looked like a movie.


Poor Meredith. She was such a trooper. I’m a hugger. Meredith is not. So brownies were made in lieu of a hug :) She apologized for calling Jess, the other coordinator on campus that weekend as well as our director. Our Assistant Coordinator, Bekah was in NY for the weekend. It was then that we realized we were all at the hospital and no one was on duty on campus. We laughed and did nothing about it. Sorry, Kelly!

Jess arrived and was followed by a med student who was sent to clean me up. We all had such a good time with him. It really stung to have cuts and glass cleaned off of my skin. I asked Meredith if I could hold her hand. Remember how Meredith isn’t a  hugger? Well, she made an exception for my hand, haha. She takes my hand and starts squeezing like she is in pain. I actually had to say, Meredith, he’s not doing anything to me yet. I’m not even squeezing your hand. We had another good laugh at that. 

The doctors wouldn’t let me or Niki see each other. So we talked on speakerphone to each other the whole time instead. It was fun. It was crazy.

After the cleaning I had to get more IVs and head to get CT scans of my head and belly. It took forever.


Then I met McDreamy. The doctor finally arrived to give me stitches. He was great. Except at that point Jess and Meredith were with Niki, so I was on my own for the sutures. What an experience.

Somehow, Niki was released before me and wheeled herself into my room for a while :) That’s when the waiting game started. That’s when that tired-drunk state started. That’s when we were given scrubs to wear home. That’s when the photo shoot started. We were really trying to make the best out of the situation. I think we succeeded.

me and nik

Meredith had left to deal with a duty call so Jess drove us home around 3:00 a.m. McDreamy told Jess we couldn’t be left alone because we had head injuries. We told him that was not possible. He said that we needed to be looked in on every 4 hours. I looked at Jess, and she said, “No problem.”

We drove home and I remembered I didn’t have my ID or keys. They were still in the car. Campus police met me at my door and let us in. Jess asked if we needed anything else, and we said no. I told her I would leave my door unlocked if she wanted to stop by in the morning.

Niki and I decided to sleep in my bed together instead of her sleeping on a futon. I think that was a good decision. We needed a good night’s sleep.

We went to sleep around 4:00. At 7:30 my bedroom door slowly opens and I hear, “Jenna, Niki, it’s Jess. Just want to make sure you’re ok.” I think Niki and I grunted in response. “Ok, I’ll call you this afternoon. sleep well.” How amazing is Jess?? I mean really – we live as far apart as you can get on this campus, and she was here 4 hours later on the dot. What a great person.

I woke up earlier than Niki and made all of my insurance phone calls. Jess came by to get our prescriptions. She came back with lunch, groceries, playdough, bubbles, spot cleaner to get the blood out of my clothes, neosporin and hello kitty band aids – and our filled prescriptions. I mean really, again, how great is Jess??

Meredith stopped by to hang out. That was fun.

The next few days were filled with relaxing, a few errands, cleaning out my car – where I cried, and saying goodbye to Niki.

What a weekend. Niki and I couldn’t believe we survived. We couldn’t believe we escaped without injuries. Someone was looking out for us.


I wouldn’t have been in that accident if I took a different job. I was meant to be here and meant to live through that accident. If everything happens for a reason, what’s this reason?