Impact. My mind and voice both scream as I slam on the brakes as hard as I can, put
the car in park, and jump out.
I see the bicycle. The boy just lies there. Unconscious, blood spurts from his nose and
runs out his ear. His right hand flops in the air. This can not be! I must die. I cannot
bear this. I can't look any more.
My parents live only one block away. "Someone help him," I scream. Please someone
I want to scream more, but don't. My mom and youngest brother come and both cry.
They are powerless to help the boy or me.
I did this to them. My young 15 year old brother tries to comfort me. Poor Mike. He
knows the boy. "I'm sorry," I say.
People surround me. Some older woman says, "It's all right. MAYBE he'll live." I want
to pull her hair out.
Screaming and babbling. What a spectacle I am. They take me to the neighbors. I
don't want to go. They're dirty and people say they have bed bugs. They sit me on the
couch, put cold wet washcloths on my forehead. They bring me a pan because I am
sick to my stomach. They are nice to me.
I am glued to their couch. I see nothing and no one. Everything is far away. I hear my
mother scream, "Cassie, you've got to calm down." The neighborhood people do the
same. Nothing seems to find its way into my mind. Later my grandmother says she
was there and talked to me. I never saw or heard her.
"Eddie, Eddie, why don't you come and take me away from here?" A man keeps taking
my blood pressure. An EMT. "Go away, leave me alone." What do they want? They
should be with the boy. "EDDIE, EDDIE! I need you." Finally, I see him. Him and
nobody else. "Hold me. Hold me. Hold me. I'm sorry."
They take me outside. I'm going home. But, no, they want me to get into the
ambulance. I fight and fight. There's too many of them. I sit inside the vehicle. They
want me to lie down. "I'm not hurt, he is! Leave me alone. Leave me alone!"
Continually they take my blood pressure.
"Eddie, we've got to sell everything, get away from here. We'll move to Florida. We'll
get a divorce. I can't do this to you. You shouldn't have to go through this just because
you had the misfortune of marrying ME." I talk and I ramble.
They try to get me to be quiet. I can't breath. The EMT props my head up and says,
"Cassie, stop talking, calm down. Concentrate on breathing." I can't be quiet. I've got
The EMT asks, "Does your head hurt anywhere? You've got to calm down, Cassie."
Why does he keep calling me by name? He doesn't even know me.
Please just let me go, it's for the best. The EMT shouts to the driver, "You better step
on it, her blood pressure is up to 220, 230, 240. The siren blasts, and I lie there. This
is crazy. What are these people doing to me? Let me go. Everyone will be better off.
You fools. Leave me alone.
We arrive at the hospital. A nurse gives me a shot. Immediate calm. Medicinal?
Psychological? It doesn't matter, it doesn't last long.
Once again I begin to scream. Ranting and raving, I scream to every one I see. "How
is he? How is he?" No one will answer me. I know. I know. I killed him. I can't bear
it. I can't.
A policeman comes. He's very nice. It wasn't my fault, he says. A minister comes. He
talks to me. He gives me his clean, white hanky. He's been through the very same
thing. The boy's mother is there. I know her. She's not hysterical. I'm so sorry," I cry.
"Cassie, we don't blame you. We know it's not your fault," she tearfully says.
My Dad comes and takes us home. I go to bed. When not in a daze, I cry. HIS
grandmother comes and wants to comfort ME. No, no, I can't see her. My brother tells
her. She leaves.
How I want to die. My family shouldn't be having to go through this. Especially Eddie.
Leave me, Eddie, you must. I won't put you through this.
Everything I experience, I think, "HE can't do this, see this, hear this, because of me!
ME! I look in the mirror and I say, "Murderer."
I receive so many cards from people. Why? I need to talk, PLEASE, let me talk, but no
one wants to listen. No one wants to listen to my tears. No one chooses to hear. No
It's so hard to leave the house. I don't want people to see me, I don't want to see
people. I don't drive that car again. I live in a dark, dark place.
Cassie Memmer © 1976
That was 24 years ago, when I was 23. A very hard thing for anyone of any age to go
through. But now I know the Lord was with me, every step of the way. Especially
evident by the minister sent to me by the nurses, who caught him as he was leaving the
hospital. Only God could send the very one who had experienced the same painful
Over the years the Lord has brought me out of that dark place. Little by little He has
healed me and taught me that He is faithful to continue to bring to completion what He
It is sometimes hard not to ask, "Why?" But we have to know that God is Sovereign
and in control of all things. Sometimes He allows us to go through difficult things so
that we are able to help others in need. Through trials we become stronger in our faith,
we mature, gain Godly wisdom. and acquire compassion. Necessary components for
ministering to others who are hurting. And when someone needs comfort and you feel
unable to help in any way, just listen. Letting them talk all they want will help them to
heal. "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of
compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we
can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have
received from God." 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV)
Addendum © 1999
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