My son, Colton was 18 years old at the time and had just started his first year at the local community college two weeks before. He had not reached his potential in high school, especially during his senior year. Each day was a fight to keep him on course, but there is a limit to what parents can force their high school senior to do.
College seemed to be starting the same way that high school had ended. He was out in the evenings instead of home completing coursework. So, I was not surprised when he called home on a Tuesday night to let me know he was going to be out much later than he had planned. He told me he was just going to a neighboring city to eat with some friends. I was annoyed.
It seemed so unnecessary being that it was a weeknight, and after 9 p.m. So, of course, I was annoyed, but at least he let me know. At the time, I felt thankful for that.
About ten minutes later, I got a horrible, sick “butterflies” in my stomach feeling. I told my boyfriend I had a terrible, sick feeling about Colton going to the city. This feeling had never happened to me before, but I had heard about intuition, and I wasn’t going to ignore it.
I had to tell him not to go.
I immediately called and told him to come home. I told him it was late, I didn’t know the driver and was getting prepared for an argument. Surprisingly, he said the group had already decided not to go out to eat, but they had to stop at a friend’s house, and then he would be dropped off at home. Relief.
My phone rang about ten minutes later. Colton’s number appeared on the phone, and I assumed the group had changed plans again. When I said hello, I did not hear Colton’s voice on the other end. It was his friend yelling that Colton had been hit by a car, and was on his way to the hospital.
I don’t remember the next few minutes except arriving at the hospital, less than five minutes away. From there, the local hospital decided that he needed to be transported to the regional hospital that dealt with more serious traumas. The next hours, and even days, are mostly a blur.
Colton sustained many injuries, including a fractured back and sternum, a dislocated hip, punctured lung, road burn, and deep wounds and lacerations. After several procedures, staples on his head and neck, stitches everywhere, burn treatments, and other things my mind doesn’t want to remember, he was placed on the trauma floor.
After a month and a half, Colton was released to go home with wheelchair, walker, and assistance. He began the long journey of healing while working through nightmares of the incident. It has been almost a year now, and his recovery has been remarkable. He has a minor hip issue, a large amount of scar tissue, and random pain that wakes him up at night occasionally. However, he has started jogging, lifting light weights, and trying to get back into better overall shape. He is back in college and doing well. He takes his education much more serious than before and seems to value life more than ever before.
I later found out the vehicle did not just hit him. He went under the vehicle, which was later determined to be a truck or SUV, based on his injuries. The incident was labeled a hit and run. The police have never been able to find anyone connected to the incident despite all the available information.
He is lucky to be alive, and I am very thankful to have him. I am confused about my sick feeling, intuition, or whatever it should be called. Did my call prevent him from a worse fate, or did it do nothing at all?
We have heard repeatedly at his follow-up visits that he is a “walking miracle.” I have always thought of myself as an agnostic person, but now I’m more confused than ever.
If there are miracles, this would have to be one of them. I am not certain, however, that I had any part in it.