It was a cool fall October night and my family had just left church. I had not been feeling well and was not eating much at all. My husband was concerned so he suggested that we go somewhere for a late dinner. After great debate I decided tat the only thing I really wanted was broccoli and cheese soup from Ruby Tuesday’s. My daughter, Holly, was in ill sorts and was fussing about not wanting to go with us which was a very unusual characteristic for her. My aunt told us she would stay at our house with her while we went out to eat. After we had dinner we had to drive across town to pick up some Krispy Kreme doughnuts for my aunt because she was leaving for Gatlinburg, Tennessee with her grandchildren the next morning. We decided that since it was already 9:00 pm we would take the back way home which included riding on dark “country” roads. I was driving as my husband relaxed in the passenger side from over indulgence. We were almost home and we were driving on a curvy road. When we went around a curve it all of a sudden looked like a thousand fireflies were in front of us. I heard my husband exclaim “what in the world and then he screamed look out!”
But it was too late because just as I realized it was a truck in our lane with no headlights on and the “fireflies” that I saw were actually the reflection of our lights on his grill we hit head on. I do not know how long it was before I came too from the deep darkness that I had been thrown into. I have always been a very independent person and usually I am the one that handles things; not only for my intermediate family but for my extended family as well. So you can imagine my shear panic when I regain consciousness I realized I was in severe pain and could not move. My seatbelt had malfunctioned and I had been thrown into the backseat facing the hatchback of the Jeep with my head trapped between the back passenger window and the neck rest of my husband’s seat. My left lower extremity was twisted and I had severe pain in my hip region. I continued to float in and out of consciousness as the rescue workers worked to get us out of the Jeep. The next week was a blur as I had surgeries to repair broken bones and they kept me in a morphine induced semi-coma state. When they started tapering the pain medicine physical therapy came in and wanted me to work with them.
I could not bear weight on my right side because my foot was severely sprained and I could not bear weight on my left side because I had multiple broken bones including my hip. I felt so hopeless and was quickly sinking into a deep depression. I did begin to show some progress and I was soon ready to be discharged to a rehabilitation hospital. Before I left that day one of my trauma specialist came into the room and told me that he needed to talk to me. He explained that with the severity of the wreck there was no medical reason that I survive the drunk driver hitting me head on or the minor injuries my husband had sustained. He further explained that although he was skeptical about divine intervention it could be nothing short of that because I should not have been alive. He told me my family was concerned because I was so depressed and they were worried about my mental well-being because I was usually so independent and had the take charge personality. He asked me to be patient and to learn to lean on others and my broken bones and injuries would heal. The next week or two flew by with me being in rehab and learning to walk again.
There were times when I almost gave up. During the day while my family and church members were there I put on a great front acting like I was fine but in the evening when I got all of them to leave I would crumble often screaming and crying and feeling as if I had let everyone down. During this time my financial stability was also shaken because I had trouble getting my short term disability insurance started and with the lack of my income we almost lost our home. I felt like the devil was really breathing down my neck and I honestly thought that he was going to win the fight. One night an elderly gentleman came and visited me and asked if I remembered him. I knew he looked familiar but I could not place him. He explained to me that I had taken care of his wife when she had fallen and broken her hip and although a lot of the nurses and therapists had given up on her that I had made such an impact on her because I refuse to give up and I would always use encouraging words and give her comfort when she was hurting or sad.
He told me that he had visited a friend several times and had heard me weeping. He asked me if I thought my own advice to so many others would hold true for me as well. He went on to explain that God had a purpose for me and that this setback was only temporary unless I made it into something more. After he left me that night I came to multiple realizations. I realized it was ok to depend on others for a change. I realized that god had to have had his loving arms around us to protect us that night and instead of weeping I should be shedding tears of joy. I also had a newfound confidence that this would pass and I would be a stronger person. They had told me that I would be out of work for 4-6 months but I returned to work in a wheelchair after 6 weeks. I allowed others to help us with common chores and I accepted the help gracefully. I can say that God sent me an angel on earth in the form of a little elderly man who taught me that you can conquer anything. God helped me through this gentleman to heal physically, mentally, and spiritually and the whole experience has allowed me to be a better person today.