My husband and I have a very special anniversary on Tuesday 27th April, it will be 10 years since we had a serious car accident which nearly killed Paul and changed our lives forever. This is not as depressing as it sounds, as you've probably realised by now I'm a pretty upbeat type of gal and so is my honey, so really what we celebrate on this day is survival and the joy of life.
We were on vacation and were travelling from Tuscon in Arizona to meet our friends in San Diego, up til that point we'd had a great time, we'd been to LA, Monterey, San Francisco, then on to Viva Las Vegas where we met and had a great time with lots of friends. We then went on to Phoenix, then Tuscon where we found the best vintage finds - all of which were lost dammit!
Viva Las Vegas 2000
But on that journey we had a car crash that did in fact change our lives, neither of us remember it, we were hit so hard and so quick thankfully we don't remember anything, I only remember the emergency crew bringing me round in the car, but even then I was in and out of conciousness. I wasn't so bad, although clearly not great, however my husband had very serious internal injuries and worse still a severe brain injury.
This was taken only about an hour before, little did we know what would happen next.
However through all this we felt lucky, we had each other, we were alive, Paul had not changed his personality, he hadn't forgotten me which was my biggest fear when he was in a coma (I know selfish huh? but true!), he wasn't the same physically as he was before, but personality wise he was, he just couldn't do some physical stuff that he used to do.
Of course I don't want to make it sound like it was a breeze, it wasn't, there were some dark moments, but our positivity about life and our love saw us through and still does to this day.
We have learnt a lot about life since this happened, we pretty much did live life to the full before and boy are we glad we did, there are some things that are so much harder for us to do now, but we've done them at some point in the past so that's good!
We learnt about people too, some people were amazing, the 'scene' that we are part of raised an unbelievable amount of money which really really helped us through the first few months, we could not have survived without it, some friends went above and beyond the call of duty, our best friends even converted their dining room to a temporary downstairs bedroom so Paul could come at weekends when he was in rehab, we lived in a maisonette upstairs which Paul couldn't access, Bloater and Lisa will never know how amazing that was for us. We also learnt that some people weren't true friends which was kinda sad, but hey you move on!
So the moral of the story? Live life to the full as you never know what's around the corner. I'm not one of those who says live life as if every day was your last, I personally think that's not possible, for a start I don't have that kinda money ;o) You also can't have any kind of normality if you always think like that, we got in a lot of money problems at first as Paul's favourite phrase when we were out shopping was 'buy it I nearly died' and we did live life like that for a while, but the reality is that you just can't live like that.
However I would say try to do things which make you happy, don't pander to people unnecessarily as often they are the people who wouldn't be there for you when the time comes, don't just go with the flow because of peer pressure it won't make you happy! I'm not saying that we haven't made mistakes in the last 10 years but usually we rectify them quicker!
Happiness is what truly matters in life, not money, not where you live, not what possessions you have, of course they all help as well, I'm not naive I'd be ecstatic if I won the lottery, but aim for happiness first, I'm broke, started a business in a recession, can't really afford to go out, but basically apart from being broke I'm happy!
Back at Viva Las Vegas in 2006!Anyway I just wanted to share my story, there's a lot more to it, but that's the short version and on Tuesday we will be celebrating life, oh and then on Saturday 1st May we'll be celebrating our 17th Wedding Anniversary, we're broke so we can't afford to go out, but I'll cook a damn fine meal and alcohol will be involved ;o)