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Pen Your Pride

3: Having Doctors For Parents

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The smell of smoke got stronger and I could feel my heart pounding. The crack of the tree and a scream from inside the car let me know it was falling, and I quickly prayed. I tried to turn my head to see who was screaming but a sharp pain struck my entire body and the screaming stopped. It was me. I waited for the pain to stop but it didn't it just kept pulsing through me and stabbing me from the inside. I couldn't breathe and the smoke got stronger. Then I blacked out. 

---- 

I awoke in a white room. I half opened my eyes and squinted at the brightness. The fluorescent lights seemed like stadium lights. I cringed as I tried to sit up. The pain repulsed through me and I sunk back down. I groaned in pain and I heard a gasp. I slowly opened my eyes and my mom and dad were sitting a few feet from my bed. "Sweetheart!", My mom exclaimed bursting into tears. She kissed my head a million times and my dad put his hand over mine, tears slowly streaming down his face. "Hey, champ." he whispered. I wanted to smile but everything hurt, and I couldn't remember why I was here. "Are you alright? Should we get the doctor?", my mom said, her voice breaking on the last word. I opened my mouth to try to speak but I couldn't.

"I'm okay." I choked out. "I..where am I?" I asked. My eyes darted around the room. I looked down at myself. I had an IV in my arm and a neck brace on. I tried to move my legs but they would barely move. "Mom..am I paralyzed?" My eyes widened in horror. This couldn't be happening. My heart raced and the machine next to me had a fit. My mom looked to my dad, and he swallowed audibly. 

"Jackie.." my father started. My mom quickly inhaled and said she was going to go explain things to the other parents. "It's not permanent. You severely injured your spine, and your neck is broken. With physical therapy you could be able to run again by..next..next..", he pulled up a chair and held my hand. I couldn't think. No soccer my senior year? "It'd be about a year." He looked down. This hurt him just as much as it hurt me. We talked about playing soccer at North Carolina since I kicked my first ball. 

"Dad..no soccer?" I managed to get out. The bubble in my throat grew. "Even if you were able to play..I wouldn't let you. As a doctor..I know that if you even got a minor spinal injury you could be paralyzed for life." Anger replaced the pain. "Dad, I have to..what about my college career?!" He pursed his lips, "Sweetie, you're a very smart and beautiful girl." I bit the inside of my lip and tried to supress my anger. "But for now..be glad you're alright." he said and let go of my hand. "What..happened?" I asked, my voice shaking. All I could remember was the smell of burnt rubber.

"You and your friends were driving..out in the middle of nowhere. I guess you swerved and fell off the road, then you drove back onto it at such an angle that you flipped onto the left side. Your momentum spun you around until you landed in a ditch. You hit a tree and it fell, but to the right of the vehicle. You have a lot of injuries as you can tell but you might have suffered the least amount." He spoke quickly and didn't look away from my eyes. He felt more like a doctor than a dad. As he spoke, I remembered more and more. "There was a deer."  

He nodded and spoke slowly, "I know." My eyebrows furrowed, "How?" He stood and walked over to the window. "Marie told me." My heart started racing. "Are they all okay? What happened to them? Where are they?" My mind and heart were jumping a million miles per hour. "Are they okay?" He still stood facing the window. "Dad! Are my friends okay!?" I screamed at him and he slowly turned around. "Jackie,.." The door opened. "Dr. Fisher. Your wife needs you. She's.." A young doctor walked in said quickly, his eyes flashed to me then back to him, "Not holding up." He made a apologetic face and I looked to my father. He stood with silent tears rolling down his cheeks. "Thanks Aiden." He said and walked past him, with long strides.  

"But.." I tried to call after him but he was gone. "Are you alright, Jackie?" Aiden asked as he held his clipboard to his chest. "I mean.." I looked down at my body, and back to him. "I guess." He laughed and wrote something down. "What I meant was is there anything you need..food, drink, some pain suppressants.." I looked up into his pale blue eyes, "How long have I been here?" His facial expression changed to serious and I felt bad for ignoring his question. "Just over night. We performed surgery at one in the morning and it's four o'clock in the afternoon." I nodded and he sat in the chair my dad sat in. 

"Can I ask you some questions? I'm in medical school, but I'm also studying to be a psychologist." Wow, talk about an over-achiever. "Sure..but I get to ask you some too." I answered, I had a lot of questions about the wreck. "Fair enough," he smiled a polite smile and I smiled back, "okay, were you drinking or smoking before the accident?" The smile fell from my face and I closed my eyes. "Um..not..drinking," I opened them and he was nodding, "but Marie and Caleb and I just lit a cigarette right before. But Brody wasn't. He was driving." He nodded. "Good okay--" "When will I be able to walk?" I cut him off and he closed his lips.

"With intense phsyical therapy..you should be able to by school starts." I inhaled deeply. "And until then?" I asked, "A wheelchair." He murmured. "Hmph." I said and pouted. He grinned and shook his head. "Anyway..Are you scared?" He said simply, and I looked around the room. "..Of..what..?" I wondered aloud. "Of..deer..of..anything that you weren't scared of before. Maybe cars?" He motioned with his hands and I shrugged. "Not really." He gave his polite smile again and I swear he looked like Mark Salling. "That's very..intriguing." he mused and I shrugged again. "I'm glad."

He pulled a piece of paper off his clipboard and handed it to me. "It's my number. If you need anything, I will always answer." I took it and gave him a skeptical look. He took it to mean that I didn't believe him but what I really meant was why are you giving this to me when I'm only about to be 19, and you look 23. "I will answer, I work nights here too." He smiled again, and stood. "If you need anything else, just hit the button. I'll come." I nodded and looked down at his number. "Thanks." I said and he nodded slightly.  

As he walked away I wanted to call him back but he had already been gone for awhile. What happened to my friends?

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