Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The Flashing Lights Angel

It all started one bright and beautiful Saturday afternoon in Dallas, Texas. I was meeting up with some friends that night from high school that I hadn't seen in many years. I was pretty excited as I was also waiting for a couple of my girlfriends to drive in from Austin that I once worked with. I was looking forward to taking them out and showing them a good time.

My two girlfriends arrived at my house in Dallas around 3pm. My husband was not home. He was out entertaining his mom for the afternoon so my two friends and I were alone.

We did the standard hugs and so forth and the next thing you know we're looking in the liquor cabinet. It's slim pickins, but we did have a bottle of tequila. Since getting out of college I had become a casual drinker. I virtually never drank on a work night, but on weekends I would have a couple drinks at home or when we were out to dinner.....

Well, as you have already guessed, we pulled out the tequila bottle and I thought what the heck, it's a special occasion. Let's get it kicked off with a shot. One shot led to another and then a 3rd and it wasn't even 5 o'clock yet. As the old saying goes though, it's always 5 o'clock somewhere.

We left the house and off we went to the restaurant where we were to meet up with my high school buds. It started off great. Ordered a little bit of food, introduced my girl friends to my old friends, and kept the party going with some margaritas! Hey, we were in Dallas at a Mexican restaurant. When in Rome...............

Unfortunately, as tequila has the propensity to do, it snuck up on me and before I knew it I was not fit to drive. This was the college me, not the mature wife and parent that lived 99% of my time responsibly. As the social gathering at the restaurant wrapped up, we decided we were going to continue the party at another place.

Next thing I know, I'm sittin in a bar with my 2 gal pals and a couple others we had met up with at the restaurant. By this time, I'm starting to gain a bit of my senses back as I realize I have had too much to drink and cut myself off. I'm guessing the hour is about 1am by now and it's been one long day for myself and my friends.

We decide to hit the road and head back to my place to call it a night. I get on I-45 driving while I shouldn't be, but coherent enough to get the job done, or so I thought. I was doing 70 miles an hour in what I thought was a 70. Geez, this is Dallas, Texas I'm used to people whizzing by me at that speed.

So I'm good right? Next thing you know I see the flashing lights in my rearview and my heart just sank. Turns out the speed limit was temporarily 60 and I was gunned at 71 and therefore pulled over. I got out of the car and tried to remain as calm as possible. I knew what was coming. I just hoped I would pass.

The cop did his thing and I did my best. Evidently, my best wasn't good enough, because he asked me to turn around and put my hands behind my back. I said YES sir, but thought oh NO, this can't be happening.

Here's where I think the story gets even more interesting. Now I'd never been arrested before and from everything I'd ever seen, I thought I would be plopped in the backseat. Nope, he put me in the front seat of the squad car next to him. I was being extremely polite and cooperative and actually asked him, "Is there ANYTHING I can do to talk you out of this?" I'm sorry maa'm no, I'm taking you downtown. I neglected to mention that he had already asked me to take a breathalyzer and I declined, stating that I didn't know if it was in my best interests to do so. He then said well, you don't have to take it now, but when we get downtown you MUST take it or have your drivers license suspended.

We were a little ways from downtown (maybe 15 miles or so) and for some reason I decided to strike up a conversation with this officer. He seemed pretty darn nice except for the fact that he was taking me to jail. I found out we shared the same religion. We talked about family, his and mine. I told him about a retreat I had been on recently and he replied that he had been considering doing the same. I encouraged him to do so. So finally we ended up at the county jail and he searched me. He finds my anti-anxiety pills on me and escorts me into a nurses office to determine how to proceed. After some discussion, they surprisingly allow me to keep my medication even though I didn't have it in my prescription bottle. And yes, these were legally prescribed pills, but I was shocked they let me keep them without my name on a bottle.

Now he says ok times up. Either you take the breathalyzer or your license will be suspended for at least 6 months. I thought for 1 quick second and said alright, give it to me. I blew softly into the machine, but he didn't fall for that one. He said he needed a big breath on this next one. I gave it to him and literally held my breath for the results. They came instantaneously....I PASSED. Point 58.

The amount of time that had elapsed since my last drink had been hours and I got lucky. What was next I thought? I pondered that I would have to call my husband in the middle of the night with the bad/good news. That is not how this incredible night went down.

The officer drove me home himself with me again seated in the front seat. I walked in the front door and my friends couldn't believe I was standing there and not in jail. My husband had never gone to sleep, as he was still up praying that this sitation would turn out ok. I hugged him, told the story, thanked God and went to bed. One final footnote to the story: I had forgotten my drivers license at the station and that same officer came by the next day and dropped it off to me. Do you think he could have been an Angel?

thank God


Teffanie said...

This is a great story, however it is not mine. I don't want to take the credit. The great thing about this blog is ANYBODY'S story could be ANYONE'S! Happy Reading.

Sarah said...

Wow! What a GREAT story! I got chills at the very end about her husband praying for her to be OK. God listens and answers!

susliva said...

we all make choices... not always good. thank you for sharing your story. it's a reminder for all of us that good people can sometimes make bad choices. by sharing you might just have saved a life.

Anonymous said...

I think you should be thanking God that you didn't kill someone. Not that you didn't get a ticket or arrested. What is the lesson to be learned here? That a nice cop let you go or that you gor behind the wheel of a car when you shouldn't have?

Kev said...

While I agree with the last commented's sentiments, let he who has never sinned cast the first stone.

Anonymous said...

I am not saying that I am not a sinner. I have sinned. This person does not admit fault in any way. I think they are thanking God for all the wrong reasons. I don't understand the moral of this story.

Kev said...

Well, you can take from this whatever you wish. I disagree with you. I don't think the person is glorifying drunk driving or confining it. I believe the author makes it clear that they made a mistake. I think it would be borderline ridiculous to expect the person not to be "thankful" that they didn't suffer severe consequences. It OS my impression that the author learned her lesson from this. Not only this, but who are we to say that and wasn't also thanking GOD for not having hurt anyone else by her mistake

Kev said...

I meant to say condoning it, but was typing from a phone. Also, meant to say it "is" my impression. One final comment. The officer forced her to either take the breathalyzer or have her license suspended. She took it and passed. I WANT the lesson from this story to be that one shouldn't drink and drive at all. Clearly, this was a stressful situation for her, her husband and her friends. I think it's obvious what the "moral" of the story is, but as I say, take from it what you will Mr. or Mrs. Anonymous.