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Once you get your driver license in Germany at the age of 18, your Mum might tell you from the date before leaving by car “Fahre nie schneller, als dein Schutzengel fliegen kann.” It is a German saying and it means that you should never drive faster than your guardian angel can ever fly. I remember that I always answered “Yes, yes- nothing will ever happen to me, Mum. Calm down”, closed the door and left for going somewhere. You will never even try to change your behavior or think about it until something happens that might change you as a person and your way of thinking for the rest of your life.
One day, my brother, named Philipp, and I were invited for a birthday party at Caroline´s house, a friend of both of us. Philipp is my older brother, exactly four years older than I am. He means the world to me and he is on the one hand my brother and on the other hand my best friend at the same time, he has always been the one who protects me besides my boyfriend and the one who I trust most. There were a lot of people at Caroline´s house and it was pretty crowded. Whenever I had some space I was dancing with my friends and singing our favorites songs.
Everybody was laughing a lot and I felt being home among my closest friends. We had a good time there, Philipp and I decided to go around 4 am in the night. Most of the people left already and as usual we were the last ones. I was supposed to drive back home, so I didn´t drink alcohol at all. The streets had been flooded with water, what made it even more difficult to drive and keep paying attention. On the way back home we were laughing and talking a lot in the car, as well as listening to music. I was just very happy and loved to drive very fast while listening to my favorite Beatles´ song “While my guitar gently weeps”. After a while, I approached the last crossroads before home.
The best part of the song played and I turned my head to the right and looked at my brother´s face for one second. He started laughing, singing like crazy and turned up the volume. I felt the happiness flowing through my blood vessels and enjoyed the good side of life. Suddenly as I turned my head back for watching the road, I just saw a car on our side of the road in front of ours with its huge lights on. Accordingly I acted in the heat of the moment and turned to the left side of the road to avoid any collision.
I heard Philipp screaming my name while the car was slipping from the one side to the other and I tried to stop it on the left side of the road. A few seconds later the music was still playing, I succeeded in stopping the car with squeaky tires. Drenched in tears and sweaty palms, I looked at my brother´s face, he looked at me, gave me a hug and then he said “Sophie, we are still alive, thank you! I love you, little sister!” I have been still shocked and wasn´t able to say anything at this moment. I was just very happy to lie in my brother´s arms and feeling save. As soon we got home I didn´t stop hugging my parents.
From now on I am always afraid of driving when it is rainy and the roads might be slippery and more dangerous for passing over. This experience might have changed in some way my character and the way I am behaving in different situations. I am more thankful for life and appreciate more the good times and good days in life because it seems that it can be the last one from one second to the other. Life can change in split seconds without being in charge of it. I believe in destiny and maybe it just wasn´t our time to go because we were definitely too young. At the latest now I know how valuable life is. Even though it wasn´t my fault, I would definitely feel guilty if we got injured. I couldn´t keep on living, knowing I hurt my brother seriously, or even worse, killed him. Could you? I could not.