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…the Ravena Gildharie story (By Mondale Smith)“In my quiet moments it hurts to think that I got a chance that a young mother didn’t get so now I live life and enjoy it being thankful for every second,” says Journalist Ravena Gildharie.On October 18, 2008, with watering eyes, fears of the worse enveloped the Georgetown Hospital’s compound, as media operatives and public-spirited citizens flocked to the medical institution,http: www.cheapnfljerseyswholesaleoutlet.cc cheap-los-angeles-angels-jersey-outlet-138 , seeking any information of who and how many were among the fatalities.A fatal accident had occurred and media operatives were in it. For sure, two persons were dead, but their identities were a mystery and that sparked tearful outbursts and prayers.After hours of what seemed like an eternity, an ambulance siren was heard in the distance.Seconds later with attendants at the ready, the hospital gates swung open and an ambulance drove in.As the door of the ambulance was opened, loud wailings permeated the air as scores clambered close to confirm the dreaded news.Back on my feet again: Journalist Raveena Gildharie On the inside, two women lay side by side on stretchers, one listed as critical but was talking and the other was dead.The dead person was 23-year-old, mother of one, Akila Jacobs,http: www.cheapnfljerseyswholesaleoutlet.cc cheap-oakland-athletics-jersey-outlet-107 , who was attached to the National Communications Network (NCN).The talking woman was Ravena Gildharie, a Guyana Times reporter, who was among several media operatives injured in the Soesdyke accident, but hers was the worse.Many feared that her life would never be the same again; worse yet, some said she was not going to walk again.Enjoying the best after the worst of times Monday last, after months of being mostly bed-ridden, the ever smiling Gildharie was back on assignment with much zeal, celebrating the chance to stand, walk and work again.“I still want to do my travels and I wouldn’t let this get me down. As soon as I’m well enough to go, I will go back into covering out-of-town assignments.”Prior to the accident, she dreaded walking, but she now says, “When something is snatched from you, then you realise the importance of it. Now I walk all over the place.”She told Kaieteur News, “It was a bit difficult for me to begin walking again, but while I’ll never be totally normal, I am walking and I’m happy that I can do that again.”Nicknamed ‘Miss Agriculture’ by her colleagues for her out-of-town travels, she said “Life is very, very different now, I see things differently.”Gildharie in a reflective mode, shadowed her watering eyes with a broad chuckle-filled smile and said, “In my quiet moments it hurts to think that I got a chance that a young mother didn’t get, so now I live life and enjoy it, being thankful for every second.”She said some of her friends cannot understand why she is so jovial and to this she notes, “When you reach to a point where you were close to death, you come to realise the things I used to worry about and may seem important, are no longer important.”The accident occurred while she was on a GT&T assignment and she said that in return, the company has covered all her medical bills. She said she is eternally grateful to Dr. Joseph, the physiotherapists, her family, friends and the strangers who stuck with and encouraged her along.To the point of anorexia, for some, the average 21 year-old woman is cautious about her weight and the beauty queen syndrome of looking pretty.Some are obsessed with their diet and dread weight gain, but most eventually realised that life is simply worthwhile living, knowing that they will never be a size six.Gildharie can neither stoop nor bend, and she has to watch her weight and diet as a necessity after surviving the accident, since her hips were broken in two places. In addition, her right hand was broken and the ligaments in her knees were torn, but she’s not complaining.Though she has had her down days while being bed-ridden, she always kept the faith that better days were going to come, despite doubts about being able to walk again.“Today I’m having those better days.”She has taken an oath to live and enjoy every second, being thankful to God for life and being able to walk again.“Before I had a choice of going to the gym, but now I have to. I also have to manage my diet and I can’t eat certain foods as a strict discipline. I have to exercise everyday or I’ll not be able to walk, and the pain would be excruciating.”RecollectionGildharie’s memory of October 18,http: www.cheapnfljerseyswholesaleoutlet.cc cheap-pittsburgh-penguins-jersey-outlet , 2008, remains vivid and in her quiet moments she flashes back, crying at the thought of what could have been her faith had she not surrendered her front seat at the insistence of Akila.“I was sitting strapped down in the front seat and she came to me and said she was not feeling well. We had a little argument about it, then I subsequently went over to the seat immediately behind the front seat but I felt uncomfortable and decided to go to the back seat of the bus.”Gildharie said she shed tears on Monday last, when for the first time she looked at some photos that were taken on that day, prior to the accident. Among them was one of a little girl.With disheartening eyes, Gildharie remembered herself and Akila playing with and hugging the lass and said, “I still remember Akila and I swapping stories about her daughter and my niece. It was like her daughter was her world, then it’s like one minute we are talking and laughing, and the next minute she’s dead.”Gildharie has finished physiotherapy and is now involved in routine exercise daily.Gildharie’s words of wisdom now are, “Don’t wait until you have an experience like I did to realise how important things are to you. Treasure family, friends and life itself.”Flash back On October 18, 2008 news of a fatal accident involving media operatives on the Linden Soesdyke Highway sent shockwaves through the media fraternity.It was the day that the infectious smile of NCN reporter, Akila Jacobs was permanently removed as a result of the accident.Forever etched in local media history, eight months later, eyes well up at the mere mention of her name, as reference is made to her daughter, whom she lived and died trying to provide for.That story is a constant reminder of life being only a heartbeat away, as it enforced the need for the Police Traffic Department to enforce laws regarding parked vehicles on the Linden Soesdyke Highway.


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