Always Wear Your Seat Belt…

At 9:18 pm on Tuesday evening, I had just finished dinner with friends in Oakland, when I got a phone call from my mother-in-law saying Arann, my husband, her son, was in the hospital.

She said… he had been hit by a drunk driver at 3:30 pm while driving home from farm camp.

She said… she had been driving in the car behind him and so she saw the whole thing happen. Meaning she saw her youngest child get hit head-on by another car.

She said… he had just gotten out of surgery, they were keeping him over night, and I should get to the hospital as soon as I could.

She also said… he had been wearing his seatbelt and both airbags came out… so he was going to be ok.

She was right… Arann is now home from the hospital and even though everything in his body hurts right now, he is eventually going to be ok.

Whereas the totaled car, which is now sitting in our driveway waiting to be towed away, silently reminds us that we are so, so very lucky that Arann will eventually be ok… because it easily could have been so much worse.

About the author paige green

Paige Green is a documentary and portrait photographer, whose storytelling approach to photography frequently addresses issues involving agriculture, land use, and food. Her work is featured in nine books and has been published in Glamour, National Geographic Traveler, New York Times Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, GQ, Country Living, House Beautiful, and Culture. Paige lives in Petaluma, CA with a house full of boys.

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  1. So glad he’s ok Paige. I hope he’s up and running very soon. Love to you both. Tx


  2. YES we are so lucky that Arann is alive…the world is a much better place with him in it!



  3. so scary!! thank goodness arann is all right….
    here’s to a speedy recovery:)


  4. How scary! So glad you are on the mend Arann. I would love to see a picture of you in your snuggie. Carol


  5. Thank heaven for good luck and seat belts and airbags. Im so glad that this too will pass and Arann will be OK forever.
    What kind of car was that? I cant even tell. Amazing that a human body of soft parts could withstand a crash like that.
    Blessings for a speedy recovery.


  6. Holy Fark! I’m in a toss-up about seat belts. I was thrown from a vehicle down the median of the highway at 70mph one unfortunate night. Had I been buckled up and tethered to my seat, the bones of my torso and — most importantly — my cranium, much like the entire cabin area of the SUV, would have been crushed to smithereens, flattened like a pancake, twisted and contorted to an unusable state, totaled, towed, forgotten.

    In another car crash years later, had I NOT been buckled up, the sudden interruption of the momentum of my vehicle crashing into the barricading walls of the overpass, would have ejected my body through the windshield and down a long drop to interrupt the momentum of speedy drivers on 1-85.

    Some people are meant to be here. Seat belt or no.

    Cheers to your team for being among the Divine Immutable.


  7. Sarah (Haberfeld) de Haaff October 11, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    Oh Man Oh Man Oh Man!!! That is awful. Those phone calls are heart stopping….So grateful it wasn’t worse. I’m an old friend from HS (lived around the corner) and was able to see this because you tagged him on FB! 🙂 I love technology! I hope you both recover from the emotional injuries and that Arann’s physical injuries heal quickly. Please give him a (gentle) hug from me when he’s ready for it!? That shoulder looks sore.

    Sending healing thoughts,


  8. Holy smokes. I saw this when you posted and had to come back to respond. Oh, Arann. Oh, Paige. You are both amazing and beautiful. I am so glad you are here and have each other. Love you something fierce.


  9. P & A,

    That is simply so unreal, I cannot believe the photo of the car. Thank goodness everything worked out okay, A- you are a trooper, good job on being sturdy and lucky. P- what a horrible phone call to receive, life is so insane. Thinking of you guys. Love.


  10. I feel so awkward leaving you an “I love you guys, and I’m so glad you had a miracle!” message in this impersonal format, but truth be told, I don’t even have your phone numbers these days. . . gotta track those down. Anyway, I’m thinking of you and how relieved I am that the seat belt and the airbags and the guardian angel were all on the same job that day. Big big love from afar. –Hannah & Co.


  11. Thank you, everyone. Arann checks my blog and the comments often, so this is a great place to show him you love him 🙂

    The car, Ralph, was a Honda Civic Hatchback. I loved that little car, it was the perfect size car and very fuel efficient.

    But I didn’t love the car as much as Arann. After this… I am sad to say that I do not want another small car. We are really lucky that the other car was not too much bigger than this one.


  12. How scary and lucky and unbelievable and heart wrenching all at the same time. I’m so glad Arann is ok…


  13. Arann! Cheers to a fellow survivor! I am so proud of you pulling through and shed a tear at the thought of what your mother had to witness. Paige- Your experience is no less traumatic- and perhaps you guys will consider a Subaru- without a doubt mine was the reason I survived a similar if more severe collision. My thoughts are with both of you as Arann continues to heal.


  14. The crumpled up car looks really scary. Glad to see Arann’s still in one piece. Get well soon! Remember to take your meds and massage your scars (the doctor in me speaking!) Take care the both of you.



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