Saturday, June 14, 2014

Then again, things aren't so bad

So, while I'm sitting over here sniffling about my pink eye, that friend Becky I was telling you about (who said we'd won the lottery for getting Mr. A. last school year) is having a much worse time. Her family is in the middle of making a cross-country move (having just finished up their medical residency).

On May 29th she went out to run some errands and was rear-ended, I'm assuming, by someone texting on their phone (but I'm only assuming that because she also shared a "pledge not to text and drive" on Facebook, but that could just be a coincidence). She was a little upset about having to deal with all of that mess right before moving.

And then I didn't even go help her clean her house or anything because Benjamin (and I figured she didn't want me to share our nasty germs with her family right before they set out to drive for days on end).

So, Monday was packing day. Tuesday was loading day. Wednesday was cleaning day. Thursday was closing day. Friday was leaving day—that's yesterday.

They have two vehicles. She was leading the way in the car with one of their daughters. Her husband was following behind in the van with their four other kids. Somehow or another a drunk driver smashed right into her car, sending her whirling into first a semi-truck and then a moving van (so her husband and van full of kids got to watch that).

The car was so mangled that they had to cut it open to get Becky and her daughter out. She spent the night in the hospital but miraculously only has minor bruising and a few cuts (they were thinking her injuries would be much more severe when they were initially assessing her) and her daughter is in even better condition (which is completely explained when you look at the wreckage—the driver's side is completely smashed while the rest of the car is pretty okay (still banged up but not completely mangled)).

I'm so glad they're alright and we'll keep praying for them as they eventually somehow continue their journey. Her husband chalked up their lack of injury to divine protection and I must say, I completely agree with him. Sometimes when we pray for a safe journey we expect our trip to be completely free of mishap, but sometimes the real miracle is not avoiding an accident but instead is pulling through it. And sometimes the miracle isn't even pulling through the accident but somehow making it through the death of a loved one.

At this point I'd link up to posts I wrote about the death of my friend Ryan Alder. But I can't find a post about it. I know I found out about it soon after it happened. I know my friend Jaehee and I chatted about it online—she was still in the states, waiting to fly overseas, while her husband was already out in Egypt—and she was suddenly terrified to be so far away from him. I know she and I cried about it together. I know my mom went to Ryan's funeral "for us." I know I've always looked up to Kate and how she dealt with all the awfulness of everything. I can't believe I didn't write anything about it because that's how I process things (oh, look—I did write something).

They were in a wreck driving home from visiting Ryan's parents. Kate ended up in the hospital with a neck injury and for days would wake up and ask about Ryan and they'd have to tell her every day that he died instantly until she regained enough of her short-term memory to not have to be told.

Their sweet baby was kept perfectly safe in her carseat.

Katie considers herself incredibly blessed. And she surely is. I just can't imagine how I'd get through all of that. And that's just one reason I look up to her so much.

At this point I'd also link up to a post describing that one time we were moving from BC to Alberta and our family was split up between the moving truck, which my dad was driving with the boys riding, and the van, which my mom was driving with me and my sister riding. We'd been going through a bad blizzard and the road was icy. Driving conditions were, in a word, terrible.

My dad stepped on the brakes to slow down before going around a curve but ended up sliding off the road into the ditch. My mom, who was behind him, slammed on the brakes, which then froze, sending us into an uncontrollable spin.

My mom let go of the steering wheel and uttered the words, "Heavenly Father, help!"

The car immediately stopped. We were in the wrong lane, but at least we were in a lane (and hadn't busted through the guardrail and gone over the side of the mountain)!

The next car who came by had—get this—a cellular phone. Crazy, right? It was only 1994! What are the odds of a car equipped with a cell phone coming by? We were able to call for a tow truck and leave my dad with the moving van, confident that help was on its way, before piling all the kids into the van and finishing the drive to Calgary.

I'm positive I wrote about that elsewhere but I can't find the post for some reason.

Anyway, right now, I'm okay with a little pink eye, even if it means I can't go swimming. The girls are getting ready to go swimming with Andrew. He already took care of the kids this morning while I took a nap (my eye was burning so badly I could not keep it open so I put a warm cloth on it and lay on the bed because there's not much use in walking around while holding a cloth on your face—next thing I know everybody's coming home from running errands without me). Now he's taking the girls swimming while I stay home with Benjamin because we're quarantining ourselves from the pool. (I'm not sure when Andrew's going to get any work done but my eyeball is like a burning ball of fire in my face, so...oh, well.)

I insisted on putting the girls' hair into ponytails and doling out rational amounts of sunscreen.

"Look at you!" Miriam said with patronizing cheer. "You're sick and you're taking care of us and you're just fine!"

"Daddy needs sunscreen, too," I said.

"No, I don't. I'm fine," Andrew said. He hates sunscreen and lotion and gel and any other substance one might have to slather onto their skin or hair. There is a reason we bought a swim shirt for him—it's like instant sun screen and he'll actually put it on.

"Yes, you do," I insisted.

"What's that noise?" he asked.

"The screen door," I said. "It's not quite closed."

"That's funny," he said and then raced through the house, pushed that screen door open, and leaped off the front porch.

Don't worry. I chased him down and lathered sunscreen all over his face (I may have pink eye but that doesn't mean I'm a complete invalid). Sometimes he's my most difficult child. But I'm still glad he's mine, especially when he's spent most of Father's Day weekend taking care of the kids by himself while I spent the day lying in bed.

At any rate, right now I feel incredibly blessed by my own burdens. I really think that "if we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back." Though I honestly think Becky would choose pink eye right now over what happened last night I'm not sure she'd be too thrilled with three more years of school! Haha!

1 comment:

  1. I understand Andrew completely when it comes to lotions, etc. A swim shirt actually sounds like a great idea. I should invest in one of those.