When the accident happened, I was very calm - my first concern was obviously the kids - first of all making sure that they were both in one piece (not necessarily going to be the case following a pretty horrific accident like that). Fortunately the car had done its job and we were all relatively unscathed - save a few cuts, bruises and only later on to become apparent - ligament damage and deep tissue bruising. This was a blessed relief.
Given the amount of smoke in the car (fortunately from the airbags and sliding up the road on our doorhandles, I think), and the position of the car - facing the wrong way after a bend on a dual carriageway my next thought was to calm the kids down enough to get them out of the car. This was not easy - they were obviously distraught, panicked even, and the doors were extremely heavy and possibly buckled, so it was tricky to get them and hold them open. Fortunately a couple of passers by helped, and I shoved the kids out the door, and it was pretty simple to get out myself. Moving the kids to a safe part of the highway, and then dealing with the other driver and then the police, and then seeing the kids off to a nearby house, was all keeping me occupied. I also had the presence of mind to take photos and so on. All very businesslike you understand.
Once the kids had gone however, I found that my composure deserted me. My legs went to jelly, and I could not even stand up any more. This was probably the adrenaline leaving me, and the subsequent "low" that ensued. Who knows.
For the next few days, I suffered from periodic lack of composure - episodes where I couldn't stand up; I'd just dissolve into jelly. I could no longer sleep except in front of the tv, and I was prone to a complete lack of self discipline - eating and drinking rubbish whenever I fancied. I was very very low - not speaking, no motivation, overly sensitive, and prone to nightmares when I could sleep. I talked about it to the Doctor - partly to do with the insurance claims, and he diagnosed a post traumatic stress type reaction. I could certainly see where he was coming from. I can see what a complete nightmare this can be for people - particularly those people that have this frame of mind for prolonged period of time. I have absolutely no doubt that my "depression" was to do with the accident - but specifically to do with the worry over the children. At the time of the crash everything happened in slow motion - and all that was going through my mind was my one hope that the kids would be ok.
Last Tuesday, I woke up and it was like someone had lifted a huge weight from my shoulders. It is really strange - it is only after the fact, that I realise how awful my state of mind was. And I now know what it is like to - thankfully briefly - live with PTSD, and I can completely empathise and sympathise with those that have it - sometimes forever. I have no idea what happened to lift my mood - perhaps it was the realisation that the kids still need me, or perhaps just the sheer pleasure of running with my mates, but at the end of the day I am so glad that the monster that was within me is no longer there.