Our daughter was in a car accident in Virginia. We live in Florida. We were sixteen hours away from her.
My husband got the tearful call about 8:30 in the morning. Our daughter was OK enough to call her dad and then text a close-by relative. Upon rounding a highway curve, she found traffic stopped and hit the car in front of her. She swerved to minimize the punch, but then spun around across the road and hit the guard rail on the other side.
I did not see a picture of the her car until the next day, and maybe it was better I didn't, because I know I would have been more scared and tearful than I already was.
|The totaled Nissan|
I didn't talk to our daughter for a few hours after the accident, because she had to deal with the police, and then the ER. My sister-in-law and her husband rushed to the crash site and filled in for us, hugging her and helping her and insisting she take the drugs the ER doc gave her. She had no broken bones, just bruises and a seat belt mark on her neck. When I look at the car pictures, I am still amazed and so grateful she did not have more injuries.
By the grace of God, I keep thinking. Our daughter credits the Nissan Versa for saving her life. She also credits her guardian angel, whom she calls Patient Steve.
I finally talked to our girl, who assured me she was fine, just sore, but so "proud" of her car. She was thankful there was no other traffic on the road. So grateful she did not hurt anyone (the woman in the car she did hit was fine, and her car did not have nearly the damage the Nissan sustained.)
Our daughter was grateful there was a policeman just a few cars behind her. She was so grateful her accident occurred in VA near family and not in Canada, or Pennsylvania, from where she had just traveled. She was grateful she has insurance, grateful for the Vicodin that helped her through the next three days, grateful for her wonderful aunt and uncle who hovered over her with love and concern.
We are grateful for all of that too.
When my brother (the ex-clown who lives in Maryland) heard of the accident, he called to offer to drive to Virginia to get our girl. I assured him she was with family, but we did need to get her home somehow. He offered to bring her to South Carolina - we would each drive halfway. I was so touched by this offer, tears welled in my eyes. He happened to be on vacation last week and assured me he didn't mind the trip. This was pure gift.
Forty-eight hours later, we got to hug our daughter at a Baymont Inn and see that she truly was in once piece.
I had that "you're never leaving my sight again" feeling, but luckily for her, it didn't last too long. I know my children are just on loan to me for awhile...they ultimately belong to God, and He's in charge.
But, man, did I squeeze her.
Since we've been home, the blessings in this trauma have continued to pile up. She found another car - a Nissan Versa - within three days. She did not want another brand. "The Versa saved my life," she reminded us more than once. Her car insurance actually went down a bit, because this Versa is a few years newer than the old one. Her car payment is similar, and it fits in the carport of new (for her) house.
Yesterday, she was checked out by and released from the follow-up doctor, and she's ready to move on. School starts in a few weeks, and already she's tutoring a student in Chemistry.
What a difference a week makes. A day. An hour. Life can change in a minute. When my mind drifts to what could have been...my heart snaps back to what is. There are no words to express the gratitude I have for my Virginia sister-in-law and her husband, for my brother, for safe travel to S.C., for no lasting injuries, for GEICO, for Nissan, for good doctors and kind policemen, for every positive detail of this incident.
When bad things happen, some people wonder why God didn't prevent the tragedy, why He "allowed" it. I'm grateful I know God is good all the time, regardless of circumstances. Heartache and suffering are part of this life, because people are fallible and insecure and sometimes very foolish. It's the human condition. God does promise He will never leave us, and if we trust Him, He will bring good from everything. Everything. He also promises that suffering is not the end of the story.
Our daughter said it best when she posted this on facebook a few days ago.
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new.” Then he said,
"Write this down, for these words are
trustworthy and true." Rev. 21:5