Monday, October 17, 2011
I pulled up to the red light and waited. In the back seat were my 5 year old son and the 3 year old son of a friend. The light has a long cycle. The boys were chattering away to each other while we sat. The light turned green just as a car was coming from the right. I hesitated for an instant, as she didn't seem to be slowing enough to stop for the light. She did stop though, and I moved forward, about to turn left.
I heard the truck before I saw it. The giant dump truck had blown the light, probably not even seeing it as it was next to another busy intersection. I heard his wheels locking up and then saw him as he turned to the left to avoid me. I was pushing the brake pedal through the floor, sure that we were going to collide. His tires were smoking and screaming as he stopped.
Then silence. Deep breath. He hadn't hit me. Our vehicles were so close that I couldn't even see the driver above me. The boys were still chattering. I thought I was going to vomit, but as he moved out of the intersection, I moved too. We were okay.
A minute down the road, I pulled over. I didn't think I should drive until I stopped shaking and crying. The boys continued to be unaware of what had happened. I pulled myself together and took them to school.
That moment could have changed our lives forever. It didn't; God spared us. I thought about what this could have done to my family and the family of the child whose care I had been entrusted with. I thanked God for the brand new brakes in my husband's brand new car that I was driving. I thanked God for the woman who hadn't been slowing down for the light, which made me hesitate before going through the intersection. I doubt that that woman knows she may have saved our lives. The young men in the car behind me were undoubtedly stunned by what they saw, as I saw their eyes wide and mouths hanging open in my mirror at the next light. Did God use what they saw to remind them to be safe & alert drivers?