Monday, November 18, 2013

Monday Memory: The time my sister got hit by a car (and ruined my party).

(When I started this Monday Memory series nearly a year ago, I thought it was important that every post have an accompanying photograph. I've really liked have a picture to go with every story and give me a visual reminder of the event I'm sharing. However, this story needs to be told, and no picture can be found. I trust you'll all use your imaginations.) 

The 4th grade at our elementary school marked the change from being a "little kid" to being a "big kid." Fourth graders sometimes got to serve lunch in the cafeteria, had less-supervised recesses, and (most exciting of all for us little nerds) had an Honor Roll displayed in the hallway after grades came out every quarter. It should come as a shock to no one that getting my name on that Honor Roll was a challenge I took very seriously. Not only did high marks get you bragging rights in the hall, but all Honor Roll members were also invited to stay after school one day for pizza, ice cream, and roller skating in the school's multipurpose room. All of these things were the ultimate treat for a sorta-dorky 9 year-old and I was so, so very excited to go.

The party was everything I'd hoped it would be. Plenty of room for showing off my mad skating skills, tri-colored ice cream sandwiches (the best kind), and two pieces of cardboard pizza. My bliss was suddenly and rudely interrupted when one of the teachers pulled me aside. He was usually one of the friendlier, jokier teachers, but at this point he was very serious. He explained to me that he'd just gotten a call and that my little sister, Jen, had been hit by a car. After witnessing my shock, he must have figured I needed more information, and finally told me that although she'd been in a accident, she was just fine. (Lesson learned people. When telling serious stuff to kids, get to the point and give the ending first.) I wanted to leave and walk home immediately, but the teacher told me I was instructed to stay for the rest of the party and someone would come and get me. I couldn't believe it; not only had I been given very crappy and confusing news about my family, but I couldn't even leave to see them and make sure everyone was okay. I had to keep skating around in a circle to cheesy music with all these happy dorks and pretend nothing was wrong. I don't remember how long the party was scheduled to last, but it certainly felt like days passed by before my grandma picked me up.

Just like the teacher told me earlier, Jen turned out to be fine. I learned that she wasn't hit by a car so much as a very slow-moving car ran over her foot as she walked across the street while blatantly not paying attention. I don't know how anyone (even my 6-year old sister) could be so incredibly distracted that they completely miss a car driving by slowly, but somehow Jen accomplished this feat. (We later found out the driver of the car was equally distracted and driving so slowly because she was lost and looking down at directions in her lap.)

Jen didn't break anything and wasn't really hurt. The car did knock her over and her foot still has scars from some friction burns from the tire. Emergency personnel had been called in and EMTs checked her out and transported her to the hospital. When she came home later, her foot was wrapped in a giant bandage. She didn't even need a cast or a boot or anything. I suppose as far as my-sister-got-hit-by-a-car stories go, this one is pretty tame and has a happy ending. Sadly, most don't end this way.

Because Jen got hit by a car during my 4th grade Honor Roll party, no one really asked me about the party that night, or really, ever. Well family, in case you've been wondering for 25 years, the party was really great, ya know, up until the point it was ruined because my sister got hit by a car, then it pretty much sucked.

No comments: