I never saw a light or even a slight flicker at the end of my never-ending tunnel. At this time in my life, I desperately needed some independence. I couldn’t stand having every move I made watched; I wanted to have my own apartment. Everyone said that I couldn’t so I put another ad in the paper for a driver.
A girl named Beth called me for an interview. She later revealed that she was afraid I was going to be some boring old lady, but as soon as she met me, we hit it off. Beth was great; we would have so much fun together. We took trips and she gave me back so much of the independence I had lost. She gave me such a boost of self-esteem that was missing from my life. I felt confident with her by my side: it didn’t matter how I walked or talked.
Since I had a driver I signed up for a couple of college courses. I knew one of the girls taking the class who took notes for me, and I met several other people so I had a nice time, (yes, a nice time) in school. I became very involved with the handicapped student meetings. Everyone who came to these meetings wanted to make school life a little easier on themselves (note taking, ramps, etc). We also wanted to bring awareness to our classmates and get involved with their activities. At one of these meetings I met a young lady that I became instant friends with. Her name is Mary and we both got injured at the same time and were going through much of the same shit. Her then fiancé was drunk and drove her home even though she begged him to let her drive. Two blocks from her house he hit a lamppost and she flew out of the car and broke her back. She is now a quadriplegic.We felt like two normal college girls and went out for a night on the town. We went out and had dinner and I wasn’t driving so I figured I’d order a long island tea. We started laughing and joking, I had another long island tea, and then another, and another, and another…. We were having so much fun but it was time for us to head home. I was bubbly and talkative all night but once I got in to Mary’s new van I went deadly silent. Mary said something to me and I responded by throwing up all over her van. Mary started screaming “out the window, Sue, out the window!”