How long have I been here? I feel like I am encased in a metal tomb but, still, it won't give up its twisted-metal grip on me. I try again to contort my broken body against the steady weight of twisted and jagged metal and the restraint of the seatbelt, but it hurts so much more when I move and my right arm is less help than before. I feel blurry. I don't know what to do. Should I give up? The world goes black again.
On Friday morning, just like every day, Tom woke up at five o'clock in their makeshift bed on the floor. They'd lived in an RV during construction and had only recently moved into the house, which was still bare bones, so Tom and Tanya didn't even have a bed. Tom got up, showered, and headed off to work. As the morning went on, he didn't hear from Tanya. He figured she didn't call because she needed to sleep. They always needed sleep.
Sleep only lasts so long. I wake up and try again and again—knocking on the window, clawing at the clasp, pulling at the seatbelt. Is it futile? I press against the pain and try and try and try until I am exhausted. I let my eyes close so I can rest my body, my aching head.
I jump. The phone is ringing! My cell phone is ringing! I look for the blue light. Where is the phone? I twist and pull my broken chest and press my body against the confinement of the seatbelt, trying to reach it., desperate to reach it Panic overtakes reason. I can't reach it! I have to reach it! God, please let me reach it! "Tom!" I scream. "Tom, I'm here!" The phone stops. I cuss and yell and tap my foot on the floorboard. Oh, my God! Tom, I'm here! I want to hear his voice of reassurance! I want to call 911! I want help!
I think about my dog, Lady, who has comforted me countless times in the past. Lady is such a good friend and she means so much to me. Where is Lady? Lady, are you with me? I love you, Lady.
I am hungry and thirsty. What's the last thing I ate or drank? I know! I got off work in the morning and stopped at Whole Foods. I felt so gross, after working all night at my dirty job. What did I buy? I usually trust whatever my body's craving and buy something to have later because I'd usually need to go to sleep when I got home. I'm sure I got a bottle of water, which is always my first priority. Since we're building our house, we don't have a fridge so, whenever I stop at Whole Foods, I'd usually get pancakes, make a salad in the deli, or sprinkle cheese on scrambled eggs…
I am so hungry, I feel weak. I don't understand why I can't have some eggs and a bottle of water. My lips are cracking and I am tired. I feel blurry.
I need help! I realize that I need to call for help. I reach through the steering wheel and pick up my phone from the dashboard. I call 911.
"911," she says. "What is your emergency?"
"I went off the road and I need help!"
"That's stupid!" says the dispatcher, laughing at me before she hangs up.
I am so mad! I can't believe it. I want to tell Tom, so I call him.
"Hey," he answers. He sounds happy and casual.
"What the hell, Tom?" I yell at him, furious.
"What do you mean?" he asks.
"Why are you taking so long to come and get me?"
He doesn't answer. The line goes dead. In an instant, the phone rings.