June 20, 2011
One Year Ago
On June 21, 2010, our lives changed forever. As many of you know, he was nearly killed on this day. June 21, 2011 will mark the one year anniversary of his accident. He was nearly killed in an intersection on his motorcycle, being hit by a driver who was speeding, trying to make the light, and obviously not paying attention.
My sweet husband was coming home from work on this beautiful, sunny, warm 1st day of Summer. It was just a little before 3:00 pm. I wasn't feeling good that day. Something wasn't right, even the day before, I told all my Facebook friends I was going into hiding for a few days and even disabled my Facebook page.
On this 1st day of summer, I was laying on the couch taking a rest as I knew he would be home around 3:30. I had the TV on and was intrigued by a high speed chase live on TV and it happened to be right here in Long Beach on the infamous 405 freeway. We live walking distance from this freeway. I was so worried as I knew my husband traveled home on this freeway, however, the chase was in the opposite direction that my husband was traveling. I tried calling him on his cell phone to let him know about this chase, and to be careful. He never answered.
I kept glued to the TV as the helicopters flew overhead about 2:50 I knew my husband would be getting off at 3:00 and be on the freeway the same time as this chase. I was relieved when the chase ended here in Long Beach shortly after 3:00 pm, as I knew my husband most likely missed the commotion on the freeway. Whew. However, I kept trying to call him, he always calls me when he is leaving work! Something wasn't right. I later found out, Hugh forgot his cell phone that day. It was here at home.
3:30 goes by, I am laying there on the couch. 4:00 goes by, calling him, no answer. I am pacing. 4:30 my daughter comes home tells me she is going to her friend's house around the corner. 4:50 I get a knock on the door. I was in the restroom, as I was sick. The door was being pounded on, I was stuck in the restroom. I tried calling out but he didn't hear me. He kept knocking on the door and yelling through the door "LBPD, please answer your door". My heart sank. I knew something wasn't right. I was in the restroom and couldn't go to the door. I was frozen and felt faint. I kept hearing "LBPD, please answer your door". I couldn't. I felt nauseated. At this time, shaking, I walked to the door. It was all in slow motion. I saw this very tall, dark figure, everything was/is a blur. Saw the badge, he asked me to step outside, and I said "no". I knew something was wrong. I started shaking uncontrollably. I knew something bad had happened. I just didn't want him to tell me. I could see in his face it wasn't good.
I can't remember after that if I let him in, or I went outside. The officer (Officer M., I will call him) started to tell me either in the house, or through the screen door, if I knew a "Hugh Boyle", I don't remember what I said, but I do remember collapsing at my knees. He held on to me by my arms. I must have been outside because I remember him holding on to me. I knew what he was about to tell me was going to change my life forever. He proceeded to tell me that someone at Long Beach Memorial Hospital had been trying to contact me. That my husband was in a very serious accident. Remember, all I am writing right now, is from my blurred, shocked memory. All I can remember is I was shaking so bad, that I could hardly walk. Officer M., took me inside as I could barely stand.
I pleaded with him to tell me if he was alive or dead, I think. Or I dreamed that. I don't remember. Officer M., just said I need to get to Long Beach Memorial as soon as possible. I said, please do not leave me, I am alone. Please stay here while I make arrangements. "Can you drive me there." "Let me call my daughter" etc., I was blubbering. Anyhow, I picked up the phone, called Samantha, my daughter. I knew she was right around the corner. I don't remember what I said to her. I just knew she was home in an instant. Her best friend Amanda was with her. I remember Officer M., asking if she (Amanda) would drive Samantha and I to the hospital. Neither one of us was in any condition to drive. At this time, while Officer M., was talking to the girls (I think), I called my Mom, I don't remember what I told her. Then I called my best friend Melissa. I don't remember what I told her.
Officer M., waited at my house for my Mother and Dad to arrive as I think I told them to come here for some reason instead of the hospital. Officer M., waited here and directed them where to go as I was already on route to the trauma unit at Memorial. Amanda drove Sam and me, and that is all I can remember.
Amanda dropped us off at the ER and we ran in. I was lost, frantic, shaking, nauseated, crying, sobbing, you name it. ER didn't know where "Hugh Boyle" was. I remember saying, "what the fuck" you don't know where Hugh Boyle is? My daughter was crying. We were frantic. After a few phone calls, ER said he was in critical care until 7th/Floor. I heard "critical care" and lost it.
We got up to the 7th floor somehow, went to the 7th floor reception. 7th floor, you don't want to be there, this is the ICU/CCU floor. Not good. The receptionist said "Hugh Boyle" was not there. I freaked out. She made some more calls, and found out he was down in xray. Ok, breath...he's alive. She was kind enough to leave her post and take Samantha and I down to xray.
I do not remember what happens after this. All I remember is my Mom was there, Melissa, Papa, Amanda and her parents, and Samantha. At this point I don't know if Hugh is dead or alive, on life support, anything. I just know he is in some room that I cannot get in to. At some point someone, a nurse, or doctor let me peek in on him. I walked in around this divider thing, and there he was. I wasn't prepared for what I was about to see.
I walked in I had to stand back, and was allowed to see him from about 6 feet away, and the 1st thing I did was look to see if it was him, his face. I only assumed it was going to be destroyed. I thought he had his open face helmet on that day. Thank God he did not. He had is full face helmet on. Next thing I saw was this big yellow thing around his stomach. I later learned that was a brace/devise to hold his pelvis in place, because it was completely broken. There was a massive amount of blood on the floor, and his jeans laid there soaked in blood, I thought to myself, he wasn't wearing black jeans, then realized it was blood soaked jeans. I lost it, and they made me leave, I think.
Again, my memory is a fog. I just remember at some point Dr. Jones, the trauma doctor coming out and telling my Mom and I what they knew about Hugh's condition. I don't know what time this was, but we spoke down in the xray area. He proceeded to tell me the life threatening injury was the broken pelvis, internal bleeding, that he had a broken femur, lower back, ribs, shoulder dislocation and break. At this point didn't know if there was brain injury or neck. I think. He was put on a breathing machine because his breathing became very labored. I could see Dr. Jones shaking his head when speaking to my Mom, like "this doesn't look good".
My sweet dear husband spend 3 months and 10 days in the hospital. He lived, but if forever changed and disabled. I lived, and forever changed and mentally disabled. I suffer from PTSD now and each day is a struggle for me. Yes, he is alive. Yes, I know that is what you are thinking, "Shelley, at least he is alive". I get that. I got it. I don't need reminded of it. Thank you very much.
Hugh ended up with a complete broken pelvis (3 surgeries on that so far), internal bleeding, broken and dislocated right shoulder and right arm, most broken ribs, broken lower back, broken right femur (thigh bone) left knee and fibula, broken right toes, a paralyzed diaphragm, spinal nerve damage causing bi-lateral foot drop, nerve damage in his right arm and cannot lift it, and left arm nerve damage and minor brain/head injury. He has had 3 surgeries with 3 more procedures including 2 more surgeries needing to be done still. Endures all sorts of different physical therapy, balance therapy, and lymph-edema therapy. As time goes by we are still finding out more and more medical problems, and "conditions" resulting from this accident.
I am full of hatred and anger for this "man" who nearly killed my husband and left our lives turned upside down. I have since found out he is a very careless driver and has bragged about being pulled over by the cops on his Facebook page and getting away with use of cell phone and moving violations, and brags about how the cops let him go and get away with it. Dude, if you are reading this, I hope you realize your careless act that day on June 21, 2010 has made my life a living nightmare. May God have mercy on you, because I sure the hell do not.
Don't Tell Me...
Don't tell me that you understand, don't tell me that you know,
Don't tell me that I will survive, how I will surely grow.
Don't tell me this is just a test, that I am truly blessed,
That I am chosen for this task, apart from all the rest.
Don't come at me with answers that can only come from me,
Don't tell me how my grief will pass, that I will soon be free.
Don't stand in pious judgment of the bonds I must untie,
Don't tell me how to suffer, don't tell me how to cry.
My life is filled with selfishness, my pain is all I see,
But I need you, I need your love, unconditionally.
Accept me in my ups and downs, I need someone to share,
Just hold my hand and let me cry, and say,
"My friend, I really do care."