I would like to start this by saying - Emily and I are OK ... neither of us are hurt, a little shaken, and nervous to get in the car - but other than that ... we are okay.
Here's the skinny:
Tuesday Night, April 6th, on the way home from work, at approximately 5:48pm (yep I had glanced at the clock.) while stopped in traffic, I mean, complete stop - six cars ahead of us, at a red light - we were hit from behind. Now, I'm not talking a gentle nudge, and I'm not talking a slam that pushed me into the vehicles in front of me, or coming at me to the side, but just hard enough to know we were in fact hit.
I pulled over to the side of the road, as soon as traffic allowed, which wasn't very long in fact - and proceeded to call Mike, to let him know A) we were OKAY but just in an accident, and B) we were going to be a little late heading home. As I was getting off the phone with him, I asked the woman if she was alright. Her first words to me were not "are you okay?" or even "I'm Sorry" - they were " Oh MY God, I couldn't get my brakes to catch". She was driving a - You guessed it - Toyota!! The kicker is, it was an older (late 90s) model Toyota Camry ... which is NOT in fact effected by ANY of the recent recalls. Not even remotely close. Why she would come out with THAT as her first contact with me, well, verbal contact with me, is a confusing moment for me. I then told her I had to check on my daughter, and I had to contact the company I work for, as I was driving a company vehicle.
The MOMENT I opened the side door, Emily burst into tears - "MOMMA!! What was that big bump?! Is our 'wan' broken??" I comforted her, and told her it was just an accident, and that we were all okay, and I thought our van was okay too. I had to make a few more phone calls and speak with the lady that hit us, and I'd be RIGHT THERE if she needed me. I asked her if anything hurt, or if she was just shaken up. "Just scared momma, I be okay."
The woman who hit us, immediately upon seeing I had a child in the car, burst into her own tears and was that much more upset. She was already upset because she hit us, apparently, seeing a small child was in fact in the other car, made it 10 times worse. Which I completely understood. I asked her if she was alright again, and made sure her vehicle was in fact drivable, upon completion of the "information exchange" .. once she assured me it was, we got down to the nitty gritty.
Since my car is a company vehicle, I had to notify the owners (who happen to be my parents) and find out what route they wanted me to take. There didn't APPEAR to be a ton of damage to the back of the van, but the front end of her car - was completely smashed in. I took a few photos and contacted those that needed to be contacted.
As we were driving away, I saw the ART SUV from the Rochester Police Department (Accident Reconstruction Team) spin around and head our way - we did not call the police, and were well on our way at this point. I was afraid by not reporting it, I'd get in trouble, but he noticed we were okay, leaving, and turned back around.
The following day, Emily was incredibly nervous getting back in the car. She cried at first, and said she was nervous and didn't want to get into another accident, she also wanted to know if the lady that hit us, was going to hit us again. I calmed her down, talked to her and got her to understand that accidents happen, and hopefully, we wouldn't be in another one.
It has all since been taken care of - the van (or WAN as Emily calls it) has been repaired - we turned in her pink flowered car seat and are borrowing a friends, she's 4 lbs away from being in a booster seat - every thing is set and done. It was a less than fun experience, and I HOPE Emily has no residual fears ... thus far, 20 days later, she seems to be doing well.