The Decision that Changed Everything
By Toni Marie
There is one night I will never forget, one decision I will always regret, and a lesson being learned every day; and it all started on a beautiful August evening in the summer of ’99. It was just cooling off from the sun beaming down on us all day, but it was perfect for the outdoor bonfire; birthday; end of summer party that the five of us headed to. The five consisted of myself, my best friend (still a good friend), our boyfriends (at the time), and a friend of our boyfriends (more of an acquaintance to me). At least sixty people were at the party and it wasn’t long before fights broke out. Shortly after everyone started scattering to their vehicles. Soon the five of us were back in the car, only this time I was not driving. It was very foggy outside and since I was a new driver and I didn’t really know my way around I asked my boyfriend to drive. He said he was too drunk and decided that his friend should drive. This was the mistake I made. About twenty minutes later we were headed down a rural highway. It was dark and so foggy that you can barely see the lines on the road. The driver seemed to be doing alright considering that we were lost. That was until my friend’s boyfriend started being a jerk. Name calling and swearing at the driver for getting us lost. Soon they were going back and forth, faces red and spit flying. They were arguing so bad that no one noticed there was a corner coming up or how fast we were about to take it. Things took a turn for the worst. Consciousness came and went periodically for me. I remember things as if I was looking at photos. I’m stuck in the seatbelt and smoke filling up the inside of the car, my friend yelling for help to get me out, then darkness. I can hear the CB Radio of the ambulance and hear a male voice saying “I’m sorry Toni, I’m so sorry”. Later I find out I was in the ambulance with the driver....