Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Forgiving and forgetting just isn't an option sometimes

It's been a bit over a month now since my friend, Kerry, was killed in a car accident. For you to understand my frustration fully, let me tell you a little about Kerry.

I met Kerry at work. She was very different to other people. Very innocent in her thinking yet surprisingly wise about things you'd think she knew nothing about.

Kerry loved to laugh and tease and just generally make people feel good. She was always there if you needed a voice of reason or a hug or just a mischief companion.

Kerry was also very devoted to her church and her beliefs and lived her life in such a manner as there was no mistaking what she stood for. I didn't always agree but I respected her for staying so true to her values.

On the Wednesday evening, Kerry drove to a church meeting in Benoni. While she was doing this and in her meeting, 2 guys sat in some pub or some restaurant or some place somewhere getting drunk.

At around 9pm, Kerry left the church and started to head home. At the same time, these two drunk men climbed into a black BMW and raced through Benoni town, not bothering to stop at the red traffic lights.

As Kerry was crossing a main road in Benoni where the light was green for her in a Ford Bantam Bakkie with no airbags or major safety features , the BMW came screaming at over 100km through the red light and T-boned her car from the passenger side.

All 6 airbags were deployed inside the BMW and the driver and passenger were uninjured.
Kerry, however, suffered head trauma and had broken ribs and was unconscious and not breathing.

Her uncle and cousin had been driving just in front of her and had seen the accident and were able to notify the paramedics immediately.
Kerry was put onto a ventilator and taken to hospital where her family were told that she would most likely not make it.

Kerry remained in a coma for 3 weeks with bruising and swelling around her brain and swelling in the rest of her body.

She was somewhat responsive whilst in her coma which gave us all hope. I went to see her and held her hand and spoke to her and told her how we all loved her and missed her and wanted her to wake up. She squeezed my hand and I was positive that she would wake up and be back to teasing us all in no time.

Kerry started making progress after 3 weeks and was moved off the ventilator and into a normal ward.
After two days, she died from a blood clot on her lung.

I was so angry and puzzled and upset about her sudden passing and although I knew that she was pain free and was in a better place, etc, it angered me that somebody who lived such a good and pure life was murdered by people on a drunken joyride!

I asked her family members if anything had happened to the driver and they couldn't tell me much except that the car had been reported stolen and hijacked a few hours after the incident. The two men had fled from the hospital and had yet to be seen.

I was told that I should just let it go with regards to the men who killed her and find it in my heart to forgive them.

I can forgive most people for most things but this is something I find extremely difficult to let go of. I am not divine, I am human and I am angry.

I do not call many people friends and call even fewer close friends but she was one of these and she had her promising life ripped away from her and all of us here who loved her and for what?! It's not fair and yes, life is not fair but sometimes it isn't because we don't let it be.

I know it will never bring her back if they sit and rot in jail forever but it will prevent them from causing any further tragedies.

On the subject of drunk driving:

I am not even asking, I am begging those people who are social drinkers, please, if you've had too much, please do not drive. For the sake of your friends, your loved ones and for the sake of everyone else who has a friend or loved one out on the roads at the same time as you.

Please also be a real friend to your friends and don't just phone them later to make sure that they got home alright, rather advise them not to drive home and organize alternate, sober transport.

Alcohol impairs judgement and affects a persons motor skills and although someone may think they're fine, they are very possibly not. Alcohol also takes an hour to be processed by the liver into the bloodstream so by the time a person feels a little drunk, they have already had too much.

Please drink responsibly.