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Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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Battling Back From Getting Beaned: Torvar's Story. (Part Two)
By Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado
Thursday, April 26, 2012

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The boy who accidentally beaned a boy on the opposing team with a baseball shares his side of the story and shares the guilt he still feels inside.

I haven't slept well ever since all this happened.  

I shut my eyes and all I can see is the ball I pitched smashing hard into the batter's head and hearing the dull thud: to me, it sounded like a watermelon being hit with a stick.  I then see the body of the boy crumple to the ground and then him lying there, not moving (at first).

I was the one who did this to Torvar Guttensjold.  Because of me, his life is changed.  Forever.  From a healthy, active boy, Torvar changed.  He is now unable to walk, has difficulty controllng his limbs on the one side, and talks haltingly.  He is nearly blind and will never be the same again.  He has longstanding brain damage that will last for the rest of his life and he will never be able to do a lot of things without some sort of help.

Guilty?  Yes.  Every day.  I feel responsible for the Beaning that took place and I have been trying to gather up enough courage to talk to Torvar's family, to apologize to them and somehow ask for his forgiveness, but like a million other times before, I chickened out, and the pain I still feel inside is eating me alive.

My parents keep telling me not to blame myself, that it was just an accident, but I have heard this sane song-and-dance before.  Well, I have news for them: it IS my fault.  If I had been more careful, more in control with my pitch, this would have never happened.  Torvar Guttensjold would still be playing baseball and acting like a typical thirteen-year-old, and not sitting in no g.d. wheelchair, unable to walk, talk, see, or move without any difficulty to speak of!

They don't know half the pain that I experience as a result of The Beaning, as people have come to call the incident.  I think of Torvar and what he is going through practically every waking minute.  I still see, hear, experience the incident, over and over again, in my mind's eye; it's as if I have a broken record in my brain that refuses to be fixed.  I have been going to counseling to help me deal with this, but it doesn't appear to be doing any good.  I still suffer severe depression and I wish that I was dead.  

How can I live with myself, knowing that I caused a boy to suffer permanent brain damage as the result of a bad pitch??

How can I make it up to Torvar's family and friends and gather the strength to apologize to them for injuring their son/family member/friend??  

The counselor at the clinic I go to  has suggested that I start writing, as a way to help me deal with this incident; maybe then I can release some of the hurt and pain that's been bottled up inside.  I don't see how it can do any good, but I'm willing to try anything to get rid of the guilt and shame that I still carry inside.  We'll see if it works; time will only tell.

Just keep me in your thoughts and prayers; I am really dealing with a lot.  Have been ever since I beaned Torvar Guttensjold with that rotten pitch!  I would greatly appreciate it!  Thanks!

~Ollie Timpkins.

~To be continued.~  

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Reviewed by Paul Berube 4/26/2012
Well told story, Karen.
Reviewed by j w 4/26/2012
I can so see this boys pain and anguish and sense of guilt that he will live with the rest of his life...I know this is a story, but these things DO happen more times than not...Great story...I would love to see the pitcher to man up and volunteer to help with the boy's daily care and others with disabilities and it would most likely turn his guilt into accomplishment and compassion and understanding...

Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 4/26/2012
A sad accident ... well penned, Karen. Feel this young man's anguish.

(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.

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