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Saturday, May 3, 2014

ON THE 24th of April, I was on viber with my best friend, Camille. It was nearly two in the morning Eastern Standard Time. I was in New Jersey. She was in Cebu. Four hours earlier, I had been in a horrific car crash on Interstate 95, the main highway on the East Coast of the United States. And I was still in a state of shock.

The day started uneventfully. It was as chilly as it had been in the last three weeks we had been in New Jersey. After dinner, we went out to do some last-minute shopping. The following day, we were scheduled to return home to Cebu. It was about ten in the evening when cruising through I-95, we suddenly felt a shove. Simultaneously, we heard a loud noise like an explosion from the back of the car.

I remember my sister asking my brother if his tires had blown out. And I remember saying, “No, we’ve been hit. We’ve been hit from behind.” At this point, my sister then turns around and to our shock, the rear window of the car just a few inches behind our heads had been completely smashed and blown away. We didn’t even notice the wind blowing through the car.


We were in the middle lane of I-95 and I remember suddenly screaming to my brother, “Drive to the shoulder. Drive to the shoulder (an emergency stopping lane by the side of the road).” I was overcome with panic when I saw the cars zipping through us left and right. I was scared to death that another vehicle would ram through us.

As we inched our way towards the side of the road, two cars slowed down so we could safely navigate towards the shoulder. But it was only when we got out of the car to inspect the damage when we realized it was nothing short of a miracle that we had walked away from this accident, alive.
The trunk was a mass of mangled steel. My sister and I who were seated in the back seats were practically inches away from the mangled steel. Three kind Samaritans alighted from their cars to see if we were all right. When the kind, elderly lady asked if I was okay, I remember saying, “I think so.” At the back of my mind, I really didn’t know if I was okay. Or if we were okay.

I remember telling my sister and niece, let’s look at each other. Are we really okay? Did we have any injuries? Any blood oozing out of our heads or bodies? Maybe, we were just in a state of shock. We carefully inspected each other. We genuinely seemed uninjured.

We ended up standing on that highway for at least an hour. It took the state police more than 30 minutes to find us on the highway. The good Samaritans stayed with us till the cops came. When I returned to my brother’s house that evening, I asked God to grant these kind strangers a special blessing.

I thank God we walked out of that horrific accident alive and miraculously unscathed. I thank God for sending three angels to watch over us. I thank God for this second life I’m living now. My friend, Camille, tells me that the Lord still has work for me. My constant prayer has always been, “God, if there is something more I can do for you, spare me. If my work is done, then let me go.”

I’ve always believed in miracles. And once more, God in all His goodness granted me one. (email: sunstarcebucolumnist@yahoo.com, Twitter: http://twitter.com/melanietlim)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 04, 2014.


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