The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

Every Moment Like My Last

Summer Barakat, Staff Writer

About four years ago, on the first day of summer, I got into a horrible car accident. My mother, sister and I were rear ended, most of the impact going into my side of the car. The car spun and hit another car, which then hit another car. I remember being a young, innocent child who didn’t think much of that little blackout I had. I casually jumped through the backseat to the front of car in order to get out.

I never thought the car accident was much, I didn’t think it even harmed me. But it did. Horribly. Not just physically, but mentally.

The day after the accident, my back continued to hurt. I went to the Emergency Room with my mother and sister. We didn’t get x-rayed and were sent home within two hours. My mother was in extreme pain and went to another ER where they had an x-ray and an MRI done. She was told that she needed surgery for her multiple discs; I did not need surgery, but still suffer from back pain.

I now imagine crashing almost every time I’m in a vehicle. I can’t help but fantasize about the glass shattering everywhere and seeing my car smash into another. It happens too often. My knees get weak and I go numb, imagining dying in the car accident this time.

Every time I pass by where the accident was, I begin to think once again. I could’ve died that day.

But I didn’t.


I worry about not being able to drive myself because I’m so scared of getting into another accident. The trauma that accident has left me with will never go away, but I convince myself it won’t matter. I have started driving. Although this accident still affects me, I have learned to focus on my surroundings rather than worry about getting into a collision.

As a ten year old, you don’t have the worries of ending up injured or dead in a car accident. At ten, all things are peaches and posies. The summer days bring about red, white and blue popsicles dripping onto your skin and coloring it as the blazing sun beats on your face. Afternoons filled with seagulls gawking and sand flying every which way; beach volleyball and swimming become a past time. You never think your life will change. Not at 10. Not when everything should be supposedly swell.

But even with the drastic change, my life doesn’t stop. I continue on. Thinking there are not many people with this experience, but truth be told, there are. And having a near-death experience like I did doesn’t change that fact that I can’t live life to the fullest. Cherishing every moment like it’s my last, as cliche as it sounds.

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