Have you ever wondered what it would be like to get in a car accident? Maybe you have had some close calls that left you clutching the steering wheel in a white-knuckled grip. Maybe you cannot imagine it at all, but you have seen the statistics and want to be ready.

To help you better understand these events, here are six thoughts people tend to have in the wake of a crash:

1. “I can’t believe this actually happened.”

Read all of the statistics you want, but most people don’t think they will get in a car accident. They do not worry about it when they leave the house. It comes as a shock, even when you know thousands of accidents happen every day.

2. “How can I feel normal driving after this?”

The stress of a car accident is very real. Even if you do not get hurt, you may find yourself nearly having a panic attack the next time you get in the car. It can get far worse if you suffer serious injuries or if someone else gets killed in the accident.

3. “Someone is going to be angry.”

Maybe you’re worried about the other driver. Maybe you’re worried about people in the car with you. Maybe it was a work vehicle, and you wonder what your boss will say, or perhaps you are a teen driver and it was your parent’s car. Even when it wasn’t your fault, you worry about telling people what happened.

4. “I’m lucky to be alive.”

Sometimes, it’s almost impossible to figure out how you lived through the crash. Even people who get injured often feel stunned that it wasn’t worse when they look back and see the crumpled mess of their car.

5. “I’ll have to be extra careful from now on.”

Maybe you did not wait that extra beat at a red light, assuming the other driver would stop. Now, you probably check every time you get to a light. If driving started to feel like second nature — something you could do in your sleep — now you will think about every step a lot more carefully.

6. “The risk is real.”

You appreciate the risks of driving in a new way after a car accident. You know just how fast accidents happen and how you often cannot avoid them. You understand why the statistics are as frightening as they are. You grasp the chances that people take every day when they decide to leave the driveway.

In the aftermath of your accident, make sure you fully understand all of your legal options, especially if you suffered serious injuries.