Car Wreck Update

It’s been a week and a half since our wreck, and I thought I’d just give a little update as to where everything stands.

God has blessed us with a vehicle! We wrestled with the decision about whether to get the very best thing we could afford, or to find something cheaper but reliable while we saved up for a long-term family car. In the end, we settled on a middle ground, deciding on a budget of $4000, which would leave us with some money leftover from the insurance payoff, and wouldn’t require us to dip into our savings at all.

A Google search for “Best car under $4000” revealed several lists, all of which contained the early 90’s Nissan Pathfinder. I found a ’93 Pathfinder on Local Sales Network that was selling for a little over two grand, so Laurie and I drove out to see it. The guy selling it was a semi-retired gentleman who sold cars “as a hobby” from a little lot on  his farm. When we explained that we were looking to pay cash for a reliable vehicle while we saved money, he said he admired our desire to stay out of debt.

“What’s the point of getting old if you can’t help out young people from time to time?” he said, knocking several hundred dollars off his asking price before I ever even began to haggle. I’d hoped to talk him down to $2000, but he sold it to us for much less than that!

It’s got some minor mechanical problems (which he told us about before we bought it) that will cost several hundred dollars… mostly routine but due maintenance such as replacing the timing belt and some radiator hoses. Even after those repairs are done, we’ll still be well under our budget, which means we have even more to put into savings toward another vehicle!

The car is really fun to drive, and it’s in great shape. It was a company car driven by a Nissan employee who commuted to work from Cookeville to Smyrna for 15 years, so most of the 185,000 miles are highway miles. He took great care of it. The leather seats are still in great shape, and everything seems to have been properly maintained. Pathfinders run forever (here’s a ’93 that’s closing in on 400,000 miles!). Ours should last plenty long enough for us to save up to pay cash for a great family car. We are blessed!

Not our car (note the CA plates) but it looks just like this.

On the injury front, it turns out I was actually hurt worse than I thought. I’d had a bad headache starting about an hour after the accident, and the chiropractor that checked me out last week thinks I hit my head on the wheel or the dash, though I don’t remember it.

Because I had turned around in my seat just before the impact, my spine was severely twisted. I never had much pain, but began to have some stiffness after a few days. The doctor said it’s good that I went in when I did, because I was at serious risk of developing a bulging disc if I hadn’t. As he said today, positioning is the most important factor in determining the extent of injury in a crash. No one else in the vehicle saw the car coming, so they were all relaxed and forward facing. None of them have any spinal injuries (they’ve been checked). I, on the other hand, was facing the rear and very tense. I’m a mess, apparently.

During my initial examination, the doctor said several things that were interesting. First of all, when he got to my neck, he said, “Holy cow! Your head had to have hit something to get your neck this far out of alignment.” When it came time for the adjustment, he warned me: “Just be ready. This is going to make you REALLY sore tonight!” As I was leaving, he said, “See you Monday… and Wednesday… and Friday… for a looooong time…”

Most importantly, though, he told me that any impact hard enough to have caused the extent of twisting in my spine should have killed anyone in the car. Just another reminder of how God was watching out for us!

Ironically, I’m much more sore from my treatments than I was from the accident, but it’s good to know that everything’s getting fixed… and that I’m not having to pay for it. There shouldn’t be any long-term effects from this, since I got in to see the chiropractor just a couple days after the accident.

Life is slowly but surely getting back to normal. Whatever that is…

2 comments on “Car Wreck Update

  1. John Gardner says:

    You may want to seek some legal advice to ensure that any medical issues that come up now or in the future are covered by the other guy’s insurance company — or to get a reasonable settlement for “pain and suffering” and to cover medical expenses for now and future. It is good that you have been to the doctor.

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