dana3By: Dana Harrell (@xxCandy_Coated)

I’ve been debating with myself on whether to talk about what I’ve been through but after hearing about the twenty-something movement, I decided to make this post. So let’s start from the start of that night, July 5, 2013.

Holiday weekend.  What better thing to do than throw a party, and throw a party we did! The whole city of Richmond was in that tiny apartment. Things were going great. We were having a great time, our guests were having a great time, shots were everywhere, drinks and bottles filled the kitchen, DJ was awesome, even had a beer pong table. It was great. danaspic2

I remember looking at my phone and seeing that it was 2am. My friend and I looked at each other and agreed that we should shut it down around 2:30, 3:00. I can’t remember why I went in the hallway. I probably got hot and went to cool off. I was out there for a few minutes, talking to people as they went back in. Then I heard this guy yelling at one of my friends. He was cursing at her, being disrespectful…he had to go. Another friend  of ours(a male) got us and everyone else back into the apartment while he would handle the disrespectful guy.

Of course at this point, we were mad. We were drunk and some guy was causing a scene outside. I remember two guys in the party asking us what was wrong, and we had told them about the disrespectful guy. I can’t remember exactly what they said but it was around the lines as “we’ll handle him”. Immediately thinking of them starting a fight and ending our party early, me and my friend followed them to try to calm them down and bring them back inside.

danaspic1These next few moments are moments that I’ve re-lived since that day. They started fighting, and everyone got pushed around. I didn’t actually see a gun being pulled out, but when we heard gunshots, everybody ran. I remember running to the front door, because that was closest to me. I made it outside and was about to turn the corner and run down the street when something wrong  happened. My mind was saying “Dana, you’re almost safe, what are you doing?” but my body…my legs had slowly started to slide down to the floor. I remember saying “oh God, no” before completely hitting the ground.

I looked around. Silence. No one to be seen. I screamed for help about 3 times before I decided to take matters into my own hands. I was laying on my back and I didn’t want to get up because I didn’t know if anything was broken. I knew I had gotten shot in the arm.

As I was sliding down, I immediately lost feeling in my left arm. I looked and saw blood pouring out of what looked like  my shoulder. I moved my legs and calmed down. To me, it looked like I had a little flesh wound. I figured that when you get shot in a place, it’ll get numb so you won’t feel pain. This was my first time getting shot, so I assumed everything was normal. I started putting pressure on my wound. The a guy and a girl came out. The guy helped me with the pressure while the girl took my phone and called 911.

danaspic3On my phone, the 911 call was July 6 at 2:27am. I didn’t feel any pain. I kept my breathing stable and was calm through the whole thing. I was even making jokes in the ambulance lol.

Waking up in the hospital later that day was not what I expected.The first thing that came to my attention was a tube down my throat. I wanted to snatch it out but my hands were tied to the bed.My parents were beside me and slowly explained that I was not shot once, but twice. I was shot in the neck and the stomach.

I was in shock at that moment. Then the doctor came in to tell me how severe my wounds were. I braced myself for the worst news while moving my legs. I could move them but my neck was in a brace and I feared that something had hit my spine.

She started with my stomach. She said because of the seriousness of the wound, I was rushed into surgery and her team searched all over for the bullet, when they noticed something strange…I didn’t have an exit wound. She said “the bullet went in, something stopped it, and it went out the way it came”. Then we went to my neck, the bullet JUST missed my spine and hopefully in time, the nerves will come back into my arm.

So here I am, 4 weeks out with major hearings. I was walking around and eating in the hospital after a day and then got all of the tubes out the next and then, I was sent home! The wound in my stomach is healed wonderfully. My neck brace is gone and now 4 months later, the arm that my doctors told me I’d never be able to use again is doing great. I’m able to write and lift it. So that’s my story. I’m 22 and I’ve been shot twice.

Are you a twentysomething with an interesting story to tell? Email me! india@thereddblogger.com