Being able to walk away requires faith, humility, and love. Some people walk away from material possessions to avoid assigning them too much meaning. Others walk away from relationships that are no longer reciprocal and support each other’s purpose in life. Many of us walk away from thoughts and ideas that have polluted our minds and have caused us to make decisions we would not have made if our minds were pure. Throughout my life, I have been blessed with the courage to walk away from all of these situations, and more.
It was not until yesterday when I was able to walk away from an accident that almost took my life – almost.
Going to college out of state required me to travel miles and miles to get to and from school. The 530 mile trek between Cincinnati and Columbia had become routine.
Wake up at 5:15am.
Go to McDonald’s for a medium coffee (3 cream, 5 Splenda) and oatmeal.
Get on the road.
Every long break, I’d look forward to the 8 hours of self-reflection, occasionally interrupted by solo concerts. However, this trip was different. This was my last time driving from South Carolina to Ohio. After deep cleaning my apartment, I packed ALL of my belongings in my compact car like Tetris and drove toward peace and freedom.
Passing through Spartanburg, Asheville, and Knoxville, I left all negative energy from years in South Carolina in the past, only taking with me the memories that will last forever.
Memories like the first time dressing up for a football game. Playing the role of Fresh Prince in the 2014 Step Show. Being made fun of for saying “pop,” instead of soda. Winning Homecoming King.
All experiences that won’t ring the same in Columbus, OH.
After driving 6 hours, I stopped in Lexington, KY at Exit 108 to get food and to take a break from driving in the rain. When I got back on the road, I was refreshed and ready to finish out the remaining 90 miles to my house. Wale’s, “The Album About Nothing,” set the tone as I merged onto I-75 North to Cincinnati.
As I creeped closer to home, I looked forward to seeing the next mile marker.
Exit 110. Exit 115. Exit 120.
After passing a car, I was driving in the outside lane on the three lane highway. Checking all mirrors and my blind spot, I was prepared to transition back into the center lane – then my life would change forever.
Without hesitation, my car began to hydroplane and uncontrollably swerve into the middle lane. I grabbed the wheel and tried to re-correct the direction of the car to no avail. My car spun out of control and crashed into the concrete median. Glass shattered and my belongings were literally flying all over the car. After hitting the median, my car and I spun back into the line of traffic.
I let go of the wheel, closed my eyes, and prayed without words as I prepared for a collision with another vehicle.
The car finally stopped.
I could hear semi-trucks speeding down the highway, along with the sound of rain hitting the ground through a giant hole in my back windshield.
“What just happened?” The first three words I could come up with as if I just got off a roller coaster wearing 3-D glasses.
My next four words? “I should be dead.”
I repeated this statement over and over and over until it no longer made sense.
I should be dead. I am supposed to be alive, because God’s got me.
Throughout the 20 seconds of chaos, I did not have time to think nor make calculated decisions. Yet, I purposely did things I had been taught at an early age and continued to practice throughout my life.
Let go and let God. Be still. This too shall pass.
After making contact with the median,
I let go of the wheel. I remained as still as possible. I prayed to God to protect me.
When I finally stopped, I open my eyes again and felt an overwhelming peace come over me. Yes, my heart rate and blood pressure were elevated – however I was okay. I unbuckled my seat belt, opened my car door, and walked away from my car with one minor scratch.
I called my mama who assisted me through the process of getting help. My brother made his way to the scene from his nearby university (s/o to Morehead State!) and waited with me for two hours until the police and EMS arrived.
Red and blue lights, symbolic of the holiday, shined on the scene of the accident. I watched as responders approached the car, inspecting it for damage and any injured persons. One responder, Sarah looked at me and asked who had been involved in the accident. Standing tall and with a firm voice, I told her that I was the only one involved, it was my car, and physically I am 100% okay.
Uncertain I was telling the truth due to the damage, I had to repeat myself twice more and reiterate that the only reason I was able to walk away was because of God’s grace.
Being able to walk away requires love, faith, humility, and amazing grace. I refuse to rationalize why this happened to me and seek to understand things I cannot control. From this experience, I have learned so much and will continue to develop relationship with God.
I cannot stress how grateful I am for anyone who has ever prayed for me and everyone who continues to support me today. Yesterday was a reminder that I am on this earth for an exclusive purpose. I am eternally grateful that God is protecting me from all weapons formed against me.
Everything happens for a reason. Everything.
Through it all, God is good all the time. And all the time, God is good.
Encourage somebody to be great today!