We stayed at the neighbor’s house for lunch and later, after the paramedics had gone, I went home to have a shower, change my shirt, and clean up a little bit. It was Christmas Eve, but it sure didn’t feel like it.
We stayed with different neighbors until Aunt Julie got off
work and came over to stay with us. Then we went home and the cleaning
began. The paramedics had made a big mess with muddy boots and plastic
and stuff. Not that it was all that clean before, but it was a relief
to get rid of some of the reminders of what had happened to Kiy.
We still hadn’t heard anything from my parents. We knew they were at
the hospital because Mom had called one of the paramedics while they
were waiting for the helicopter. We kind of figured that no news was
good news. If she had died, we would have heard about it already.
One hour later, Grandma arrived. Her drive normally takes two hours
without construction, but it only took her one and a half hours this
time. Aunt Julie and Uncle Mike left and we waited with Grandma for a
call from Mom and Dad.
That call didn’t come until nearly
dinnertime. When I heard Mom’s voice on the other end of the line, all I
could say was, “I’m so sorry, Mom,” then the tears just started to pour
out of me.
Mom was crying too. “Kira,” she choked out, “It’s
not your fault or Neal’s fault, or Nathan’s fault. Nathan didn’t know.
He was just trying to help.”
I sobbed quietly for a minute, then I managed. “Did Kiy die?”
sighed. “No. They moved her to the Intensive Care Unit and they have
her hooked to all kinds of machines. She’s still very cold and even if
they get her warmed up without damaging her internal organs or giving
her a raging fever, she could still have brain damage or physical
Mom was actually very calm as she told me all these things that could go wrong. “Do you think she’ll be OK?” I pleaded.
“I do,” whispered Mom. “I just feel like everything will be OK.” After I
hung up, I felt better too, but I was worried. It still sounded like we
needed a miracle.
The neighbors were worried too. They kept
coming over with all kinds of treats and goodies and hugs. They cried a
little with us and tried to make us feel better. Then I helped Kinsey
and Kiyna finish wrapping their presents. We cried again as we put Kiy’s
presents under the tree. We didn’t know if she would ever get to open
them or play with them. Kinsey and Kiyna wondered what Santa would do
with all of her toys if she never came home. We hugged each other and
cried some more. If Kiy died, how would we ever celebrate Christmas