Kaleigh's Angel

It was my 32nd birthday, November 1, 1997. My only child (four-year old daughter, Kaleigh) and I were on I-894 in Milwaukee. My boyfriend (now husband) was in the car behind us. Kaleigh wasn't feeling well, so I told her to take off her seatbelt and recline the seat. My frame of mind at the time, was in case something DID happen, she wouldn't be strangled by the seatbelt.

We were traveling in the center lane of the highway, when out of nowhere it seemed, a car was in the left lane, overtaking mine. I swerved to the right to avoid being hit. I know you should never swerve; but my reflexes took over. I felt like we were spinning. Then I heard my little girl screaming..."MOMMY!!!!!!" I looked over and saw a bundle of pink tumbling around inside my car, as if I were looking in a clothes dryer. I felt helpless...I needed to help my baby; but I could do nothing.

The next thing I remember is lying in the left lane of the freeway. (I had been thrown through the sunroof) I saw my daughter lying in the lane next to me. I reached for her, unable to touch her...she was only a few feet away. "I can make it to her," I thought. "She needs me." I tried to get up, but my legs wouldn't hold me; and some people who stopped to help kept yelling at me to stay where I was. I wouldn't listen. My little girl needed me! Then I heard my boyfriend tell me to lay still. He said, "Kaleigh's okay. I'm here with her."

She and I were taken to the hospital in separate ambulances. I had no idea where she was or how she was doing, until a nurse came to me and told me I had a phone call at the nurse's desk. They wheeled me over there, where a doctor on the other end of the line told me my daughter needed surgery. I asked if it could wait until I could get there; and he said he didn't think so. I told him, "Her life is in your hands."

I came out of the car accident with a broken finger and severe road rash from sliding down the freeway. Kaleigh had a fractured hip and a bleeding artery, for which they had to shave her head, and drill away part of her skull to repair. Her neurosurgeon later told me that with or without my consent, he would have performed that surgery, because if they would've waited even two minutes more, she would have died. I truly believe he was an angel in disguise. He saved my daughter's life.

However, the story doesn't end there.

Shortly after arriving home from the hospital, Kaleigh and I were talking about the car accident. She said, "Mommy, the lady who helped me was so pretty, wasn't she?" I wasn't sure who she meant. There were a lot of people; but I remember only one female paramedic at the scene. The rest were men. I asked her, "You mean the lady from the ambulance?"

"No, mommy." Kaleigh said. "The beautiful lady with the long, blonde hair." I told her I didn't remember anyone with blonde hair. The female paramedic had shorter dark hair. "Mommy...she had a pretty red sparkly dress. She caught me and laid me on the ground. She told me everything was going to be okay." I told Kaleigh, "I do believe you saw your Guardian Angel!"

I believed in angels before I ever had a personal encounter with one. Now I believe that God sent His angels to keep my daughter and I together. Kaleigh is now 11 years old...she's in 6th grade... is a B student; and taking voice lessons. There were no lasting problems as a result of her injuries.

Thank you, God, so much for the best birthday present I could have ever asked for that day...letting me keep my little girl on Earth with me!

Lisa E.