I Wish I Hadn’t Done That – Based On a True Story
The Response I feel my heavy breaths on my hands. I’m gripping the steering wheel of my car like it’s the only chance I have at a normal life. My body’s pressed aggressively on the driver’s seat. My heart’s a racing horse. It runs faster and louder with every minute that passes. There’s an unidentifiable liquid running down my face. It could be sweat or maybe tears but I think it’s both. I shouldn’t have done that. I want to go back but it’s too late. I want it all to stop. I wish it never happened. Weeks Prior I’m putting on my socks vigorously. I travel around my home with aggressive feet. I’m ten minutes late. I have to call my boss, Sarah, to let her know about my circumstances. I grab my keys, phone, and some money. I get in my car and make the call. S/he wasn’t sure about making the call while driving but it soon became a regular behavior. Almost a routine. The Incident I’m up. It’s Saturday. Oh no! I have to go to Aunt An’s house! I’m driving now. Buzz. It’s Sarah. I should take this. “Where are you?” She’s urgent and assertive. “I’m driving to my aunt’s house.” I take a right and wait at an intersection. “Can’t it wait?” She sounds annoyed and frustrated. “No, it can’t wait. It’ll be quick.” My turn. I head straight. Only two more blocks to go. “Fine. Fine. Get here at 8. Bye.” The call ends. . . . It’s 7:53 now. I better hurry. Now I’m at a three-way intersection. I need to go right. There’re too many cars coming. I see a way in. Buzz. I pick up the phone. “I’m almost there, Sarah.” I finally turn right. Thump! I stop the car immediately. No, no, please, no. I don’t comprehend what Sarah’s saying but it’s unessential. I involuntarily try to view what/ who I’ve hit. A woman’s lying on the road in front of my car. She’s not moving. Go. I have to go! I can’t be found here. I’ll have to pay thousands! I reverse the car and drive around her. She still hasn’t moved. “Uhh . . . I’m so sorry, Sarah. An emergency just came up. I . . . I can’t make it.” I end the call. I feel my heavy breaths on my hands Reflection This simple occurrence of an inattentive driver caused many people a lot of pain. My family and I were saddened by the event, the wrongdoer (I presume) felt like a killer, and the woman, my grandmother, impermanently lost her ability to walk. She is still recovering and has a lot of difficulties in her day-to-day life. She loved to walk. The day of “The Incident,” she’d been walking to my house to babysit my brother and me. She took a longer route because, as I stated before, she enjoyed walking. She was hit by an unidentified car and went unconscious. The incident was a hit and run. “The Wrongdoer” hasn’t been found. Phone calls themselves aren’t necessarily the root of deaths but the act of looking away from the road is. New cars allow people to take calls through them. Since it’s mainly about looking at your phone, texting is a large problem. Automobiles should be able to determine when the driver’s phone is being used to text or is on other sight-consuming applications, etc. This way there will be data collected relating to phone usage in the car. People would be fined for this use. Or, once in a car, the driver’s phone automatically goes on silent mode.
This piece is based on a true story. Not all of the content in this story is non-fictional. The names in this entry do not correspond in any way to real people. I’ve written this from the viewpoint of the still-unidentified “Wrongdoer.” The actions taken by the main character are a work of fiction (except for “The Incident”). The major event or “The Incident” in this story took place about four years ago. It affected me severely. I’d like to share it because perhaps it’ll make someone think, even for a moment, about the consequences of distracted/ reckless driving.