The screams. I can still hear them echoing around me, haunting me, plaguing me. I can feel the velocity of the car, the way it pulled sideways – hydroplaning before flipping over and over again. I remember the blood, the darkness. I remember everything, even the music that had been playing before the crash.
The spirits of the past haunt me and every day I am reminded of it. The moment I open my eyes to the very second they close, because that's when they start - the flashes of memories zoom in and take my dreams in to a night feared terror.
It happened nine years ago, every night when my dreams come they are filled with sorrow and regret. I am cursed, I am haunted. I am everything that shouldn't be. Yet, I'm alive. Four people were in the car when it lost control. I'm still here. The only survivor, one that shouldn't be.
No one knows my story, no one needs to know. I am dead inside, gone like my friends. A shell of me remains – buried in scars and jagged flesh. Tainted – and there is nothing I can do but accept the past, though nearly impossible, I still try.
I was in a near fatal car wreck, a wreck that left me scarred, both physically and emotionally.
The doctors performed multiple surgeries, some that I was coma induced for…others, a vague recollection in my mind but only a flash. That is why I'm only able to remember them – they come to me in my dreams but one memory, one that I remember quite clearly – is the day I woke up, the day everything changed.
The dark clouds that had surrounded me began to clear, they were soft and peaceful. I remember struggling to hold on to that peace – but eventually it left me. I was pulled along until the thick web of fog cleared, my mind hazy and almost unresponsive. A sharp hot buzzing sound was constant in my ears. It hurt, everything protested with my movement.
Eventually everything began to focus, I remember looking up at the swarm that surrounded me. Doctors, nurses – it was an entourage. I didn't know what was happening – just that there was a commotion - a commotion but no sound. I didn't know it at that moment but my life would never be the same again. I, Isabella Jade Termlocke had been rendered deaf at sixteen.
The doctors could not repair the hearing of my busted eardrums or the seared flesh of my body. I was damaged and it is something I would regret the rest of my life.
Everything was happening so fast that I couldn't comprehend it all. I remember opening my mouth, I remember screaming - the way the staff around me responded – I was the only one that couldn't hear. I screamed for my mom, my dad – for anyone that could hear me... but I was alone and have been ever since.
In the end they sedated me, bringing me back into darkness, back into peacefulness. When I woke up again, my parents had been by – they had signed me over to a facility under the advice of my psychiatrist that had been assigned to me at the hospital.
They never came to see me, to them I was dead – I was no longer their daughter. Their daughter was perfect, smart - careful. To them I was now an embarassment and murderer. God forbid they have that on their conscience.
I was alone in the world and didn't even have an understanding – but now, at the age of twenty-five, I understand more clearly than ever about the ways of this planet, how cruel and desolate it can be – but how forgiving and beautiful as well.
I met a doctor's assistant there at the facility. He worked with me day and night to come to terms with who I am, not what I have. Tristian Falls, I will never forget his name.
He was the only doctor that genuinely seemed to care. I became dependant on to him for support, he became my one and only friend. That was short lived, I left three years later. Not because I was ready but because of the drama that had happened. I couldn't stay there…I wouldn't.
Those three years helped me with the basics in life, ones I got really good with. Lip reading, signing – listening through touch. I was living in a new light but the shadow of what use to be would never completely leave me in peace. I was damned with it forever.
I moved from Arizona to Lampasas Texas six years ago after my self-release. I found a job an hour and twenty minutes away in Brownwood, it was a drive but it was also the only place that would hire me.
I can't complain – at least I'm alive.
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