Chapter 0 - Believing the Unbelievable
Comfortable and secure, I was working in my private, corner office overlooking the park in a suburb of Los Angeles when three clients called to reschedule.
I went from a full schedule as a private practice counselor to having several hours to fill.
My publisher had been nagging me to get a physical check-up as the research for my new book had health risks, so I decided to go to my local clinic for the check-up.
If only one or two clients rescheduled, I would have remained in my office for the day.
I exited my parking garage on my motorcycle and turned right instead of left.
In the several years of working in that office I never once exited turning right instead of left.
The right turn had traffic and stop lights and the left was a quiet side street into town.
To this day I do not know, and never will know, why I turned right instead of left on that particular day, but I did.
Four blocks farther, I paused at a stop light to turn left.
When the turn arrow went green I eased out to turn and an oncoming driver in a full size SUV, went through his red light and hit me in the face, killing me instantly.
Dead in the street.
Mangled, bloody, shattered and…
Going through the intersection at that very moment was a Lutheran priest. He held my head in his hands and read me my last rites.
Sixty meters (65 yards) away, two paramedics were in the front of a fast food drive-thru waiting on their burgers.
The two emergency medical responders saw the accident occur and were on the scene in seconds bringing my body back to life.
If they had wanted tacos instead of burgers that day
I would not be here.
If they had been in the back of that drive-thru line
I would not be here.
They brought my body back to life, but my condition was critical.
I was in a stage three Glasgow coma, defined as “deep-coma or death”.
Stage three is the lowest scale of living, virtually synonymous with dead.
I was rushed to ICU.
Had the accident happened near my home, I would’ve been too far to make it to ICU in time and I would not be here.
At the moment of the accident, my son’s close friend was passing through that particular intersection, even though:
He lives nowhere near there.
He is rarely to never in that area.
He had a sudden errand at Dept. of Motor Vehicles at that exact time at that exact corner.
He phoned my son, telling him paramedics were pushing me into an ambulance.
This is how my family was alerted to the emergency.
Paramedics had no way to alert anyone or identify me.
My phone and ID had been lost in the crash.
My loved ones converged at the hospital and were met by two doctors… and a priest.
They were told it was unlikely I would ever wake up and that if I did; my brain trauma was so severe that I would probably be bed ridden for life and need cared for as long as I continued to breathe.
My girlfriend collapsed and fainted