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When Adversity Touches Our Lives

adversity

“Tell us about a day you were sure you wouldn’t get through”.  This was the topic that caught my eye when I was looking at a website called Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.  My mind went to March 22 1988.  I had never thought about sharing this story, but with the anniversary of that date quickly approaching I decided to share this very small part of my families’ past.

Some of my memories have now faded, but I will share the things I recall clearly from that day. 

Adversity

Article written about the accident in the local newspaper.  (Names removed for privacy)

It was a warm, sunny day as usual in the desert.  I put dinner in the oven and since it was going to take an hour to bake, I asked my husband, Paul to go for a walk.  So with our daughter Jenny riding her bike in front of us, Paul leading our dog on her leash and me pushing our 1-year-old son, Orin, in his stroller, off we went for a short walk.  My oldest son Luke and my two stepsons, that were visiting at the time, had stayed behind to air up their bicycle tires and planned on joining us. 

We had walked a few blocks, the sun was low in the sky and we were chatting as we walked along.  Jenny was riding a short distance in front of us on her bicycle.  Suddenly I felt myself being struck hard and thrown sideways about 20 feet.  I never lost consciousness and I knew immediately we had been hit by a car.

As I picked myself up from the ground and turned to look for my family I felt blood in my face and a numbness in my leg.  I reached for my face and could feel skin hanging loosely on my forehead. 

I could see my husband lying further down the road, quiet and not moving.  The baby stroller was even further down the road on its side, frame bent and wheels spinning.  I didn’t know if either of them were dead or alive.  I began hobbling toward them, one shoe on and one shoe off, praying as I walked.

I heard our dog, Snow, cry out and then lie still and quiet. 

As I walked, the girl who had been a passenger in the vehicle that struck us, came running up to me and said “what can I do, what can I do?”  I told her to check the baby.  The driver of the car was a young male and he kept wailing “oh my God, a baby, a baby”. 

As soon as the girl got to the stroller and picked up Orin, I heard him begin to cry, so I knew he was alive. Jenny arrived at the stroller right after she did and grabbed Orin away from her.  By that time people had come running out of their houses to assist and an ambulance had been called. 

When I reached Paul, he was lying still and was unconscious.  I was helped to lie down and someone held a cloth of some type on my face. 

The accident happened in front of a very kind woman’s house and she took Jenny and Orin in to wait for the ambulance.  Jenny told us later that the woman walked around and prayed for us the entire time they were with her.

My sister, Kathy lived on the same street as we did and before I knew it she and my mom were there with us and the police, ambulance and fire engines had arrived.  At this point in time, I can’t remember everything the paramedics did before transporting us.  I remember Paul and I were put in an ambulance together and Orin in another with my mom riding along with him.  All the way to the hospital Paul repeatedly asked “where’s my wife”. 

We were treated in the hospital with all of the typical gamut of tests being run to check for internal injuries and broken bones. 

Orin survived the ordeal with only scrapes on his head and was allowed to go home with my sister and mom.  One of many miracles that day! 

Paul and I had concussions and were bruised and had multiple abrasions.  My face was badly cut and I had a very deep laceration on my left thigh.  These were treated and stitched and we were kept overnight for observation.

We were placed in a hospital room together and I very vividly remember lying in my hospital bed and looking over at Paul in his and saying, “Well Honey, there aren’t very many couples that can say they’ve been run over together”.

We were released the following day and went home to recover.  We were so sore and bruised we could hardly manage to get up and down.  The left side of my face and my neck were very swollen from the trauma and I had several stitches in my forehead.  When I looked in the mirror at myself I felt that I looked like something from a horror flick! 

adversity

Orin and I after the accident, stitches removed and beginning to heal.  I apologize for the blurriness! 

It was extremely traumatic, but we survived and I give God all of the glory for that.  I know it was only because of His protection that we weren’t dead or paralyzed.  A dear friend said to me many times, “I can just see the angels catching you”.  And I know that she was so right. 

The most difficult part for me was that it was my face that was injured.  Accidents and scars were no stranger to me.  I was in a car accident at 20 and came close to losing my right arm.  It has a very bad scar that runs the entire length and part of the breadth of my forearm. 

I never questioned God or felt like “why me” with either of these accidents.  But with this accident I really struggled with feeling that the devil had meant to kill us, but God had kept us safe.  And for a long time afterwards, years actually, I struggled with thoughts of something bad happening in almost every situation.  I realize now that I had some degree of PTSD.

God promises us in the Bible that He will never leave us nor forsake us, but He doesn’t promise that we won’t go through adversity or that bad things won’t happen to us.  What we can know in our hearts and always count on is that we are not alone in our struggle, God is there with us, even when we don’t feel his presence.

Today, 28 years later, you can still see the scar on my face, but it isn’t too terribly obvious.  I haven’t been able to raise my left eyebrow since the accident, so I can give you a quite quizzical look with one eyebrow raised! 

Paul and I were both told that we might develop seizures, which we haven’t.  So that has been yet another blessing in a long line of many!

Paul and I were to find out later that my brother-in-law, Steve, had picked Snow up and taken her to the vet.  A very kind police officer on the scene drove the boys to the vet in his squad car so they could be with her.  Her spine had been snapped in the accident and she had to be put to sleep.

That could just have easily been one of us.  Jenny was ahead of us on her bicycle, not behind, sparing her from being struck. The boys weren’t with us because they had discovered their bike tires were flat and had stayed behind to inflate them.  Once again, they were spared. 

Some people might say that everything that day was just coincidence, but not me, I know we were being watched over and our guardian angels were walking with us!

Jeremiah 29

One of my favorite scriptures when facing adversity.

This post was shared on the lovely link parties found on my “Where I Party” page!

{ 10 comments }
Peggy Rudd Jones March 21, 2016, 1:54 pm

An amazing story of faith and healing Theresa. So thankful to our Creator for you safety as it was. It is easy to blame but true faith tells us all every action has a consequence, including the one who caused the event. Your family’s decision to take a walk and the driver’s choices he made at that time. We all must have faith it is never God’s fault and I am so proud to see you write from that point of view. Blessing to you and yours. So sorry for the loss of your dear pet.

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Teresa March 21, 2016, 2:11 pm

Thank you! That is what faith is isn’t it, trusting him in the middle of our circumstances even when we can’t see anything good that could possibly come from them. For me, on some days that is much easier than others, but God understands that too! He knows I’ll eventually come back around to trusting Him.

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Kris March 22, 2016, 2:02 pm

That’s a horrific story, though beautifully written. I never understand how people get through things like that without faith in God.

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Teresa March 22, 2016, 2:11 pm

I agree. I can’t image getting through day to day life without that faith, much less when facing tremendous obstacles. Thank you so much for reading and commenting!

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Nina Holappa March 23, 2016, 9:38 am

You are an amazing woman, and it is a privilege and an honor to know and love you. So happy and lucky you are part of our family. Beautifully written. You’re right, God watches over us every day. We all need to remember that.

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Teresa March 23, 2016, 2:04 pm

Thank you for your sweet words! I feel very fortunate and blessed to be a part of the family! You are all very precious to me.

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Jenny March 25, 2016, 2:51 pm

Thank you so much for sharing your story. Such a horrific story and yet so powerful in God’s eyes.

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Teresa March 25, 2016, 11:17 pm

Thank you for reading and for your kind words!

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Karen March 27, 2016, 3:31 pm

Wow, what a perfect story to read on Easter Sunday. You did an amazing job of writing this. I can feel the horror so powerfully. Thank God for His watching over you. #SaturdaySharFest

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Teresa March 27, 2016, 8:28 pm

There are times in our lives when we feel God is distant, even though He is always with us. There are other times, that we know in our hearts that God moved in our life in a tremendous way and that was one of those days. Thank you so much for reading and commenting!

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