Page 61 - WCM 2023 Winter Flip
P. 61

of her. For a moment, I couldn’t breathe either, I was so afraid that she’d hurt herself—on my watch. She looked up at me, gulped for air, and started laughing. “Again!” she cried, and I said, “No way.” I think she was destined for skiing even then.
As they load her into the ambulance, I get out of my car and approach one of young men who brought her down the mountain. “Thank you,” I say. “This is my daughter. Should I go with her?”
“You’re welcome,” he says earnestly. “It’s better if you just follow them to the hospital.” As I turn away, he adds, “Don’t worry, sir, she’s going to be OK. They’ll take good care of her,” and it sounds like his voice is coming from the bottom of a deep well. I stagger to my car.
I consider calling my ex-wife but decide to wait until I’m at the hospital and I am certain Darlene is alright. No need to worry Jen yet, and she can
get pretty upset quickly. Plus, she’s in Portland today, which is why I’m the pickup parent. I tuck my phone in my pocket and think about that work email hanging out there. Maybe I can respond when I’m at the hospital. I mean, she just fell.
She looked unconscious but she’ll revive in the ambulance, I tell myself. When I get there, she’ll be fine, shook up a little, but fine. I hope nothing is broken. She would hate to miss a season of skiing.
I drive fast because I’m behind an ambulance, and my pulse is racing. I drive as focused as I ever have, straight, sober, scared, and as we drive down the hill into town, I think this may be the closest to skiing I ever come. Skiing has always kind of scared me, and besides, I hate falling down. I’ve never even tried it, and depending how this works out, I likely never will. My heart is pounding right out of my chest.

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