Let the story begin on a Sunday afternoon, August 17th, 2008. My best friends were throwing Jeremy and I a house-warming party! YAY for new houses, and new stuff to go in it! My mom came down the Friday before to help me get the house in order, which, for those of you who really know my mom and I, meant rearranging pretty much every room in our 5 bedroom house! We had a great time finishing up some much needed projects in order to get our home "guest ready" for the shower on Sunday. This meant an exhausting weekend of late nights, soreness, and double-vision from lack of sleep!
At this point in our lives, Jeremy and I were members of West A (we still LOVE those people!). We were also leaders of the college group and the teachers for Sunday morning class. Due to the fact that my mom and I were up into the wee hours of the morning, my gracious hubby took his OWN car (I will explain this later) to church to teach, and let us sleep in. This NEVER happened, we always rode together....
My mom and I met Jeremy at West A in time for "big church" (yes, I am 27 and still call it that). After church was over, Jeremy headed home, and my mom and I headed to Braums on Western and Plains to swing through and grab a bite to eat before the shower started at 2. We left the church, and went our separate ways.
Now, let me interrupt this story, to bring you a little background info. We (my family) are from Dalhart, TX (GO WOLVES!). It is a very small town. You don't lock your doors, you don't lock your cars, you don't wear seat belts. OK, back to the story.
My mom and I are driving down Soncy, headed towards I-40. Jeremy and I had just gotten a new-to-us car, which had that ANNOYING bell that would ring until you put your seat belts on. My mom and I are enjoying conversation when I hear, "ding-ding." I say, "mom, put your seat belt on." We keep driving, and are now up on I-40 and I hear, "ding-ding." I say, "Mom, PUT your seat belt on!" We take our exit at Western (right next to Blue Sky) and get stopped by the stop light. Again I hear, "ding-ding." I say, "MOM, PUT it on! It is just going to keep ringing until we get home!" So, she reaches over, and snaps it into place. Ahhh...silence. The light turns green, we go under I-40 and come to a complete stop on Western due to all of the traffic at lunch. I turn on my blinker to turn into Braums.
Then out of no where, my car is moving. I will NEVER be able to forget the feeling that I was no longer in control. I remember screaming out, "MOM, MOM, MOM."
We had been hit. Rear-ended actually. By a man in his 40's, driving WAY over the speed limit. During the moments of "the wreck" I felt like I was in the Matrix. SLOW-motion, and NO control...two of the scariest emotions that could be felt at the same time.
It's funny how things work. The very sound I had been wanting just a few short minutes before (silence) was now the object of my horror.
Another interruption for some details. When this man hit us, we were completely stopped, waiting to turn left into Braums. Both of our seats broke and fell backwards upon impact, which meant, I could not see where I was driving. If you remember, I had come to a complete stop due to all of the TRAFFIC. All I knew to do was turn the wheel to the right, because I new I didn't want to also hit oncoming traffic...and was hoping I would not hit anyone else to the right.
The car stops. I'm running on sheer adrenaline. I unbuckle my seat belt and step out of the car. I look around, turning a circle, and then it hits me...my mom is in the car too. The place where the car stopped was actually up and over the curb and straight into a fence (we didn't knock it down, we just came right up to it).
I jump over the hood of my car and run over to my mom's side of the vehicle. (I see the man that hit us, I ask if he's OK, he shook his head yes. I ask if he had a cell phone, he shook his head no. Then he climbs back into his car and shuts the door.) Her door is jammed locked, and I can't get to her. Every window of my car broke upon impact, so I can lean in and touch/talk to her, I just CAN'T get to her. She is laying down (because our seats broke), with her feet on the dashboard, not breathing, and having a seizure.
At this point, I'm delirious. I'm trying to "pry" her door open with my church clothes and heels on. I'm yelling at her, "Mommy, Mommy"....silence.
I stop, and I literally CRY OUT to God....."I CAN'T DO THIS," "I CAN'T do THIS," "I CAN'T"....and that's when I hear the sirens. 3 men pull me away from my mom and the horrifying scene at hand.
All the details get a little blurry from here, but I know I used a woman's phone to first dial Jeremy: who wasn't home yet, Mary Lodholm: to leave a message for her to get a hold of Jeremy and tell him to call me, and to my Dad: to tell him that it was bad, and he needed to get to Amarillo now. I know I called these 3 people, but I don't actually remember talking to any of them. The firemen take me to a stretcher and load me on the ambulance.The jaws of life had to be used on my car to get to my mom. They resuscitated her and they loaded her on the ambulance with me.
The ER team is working on my mom, talking to her, trying to keep her conscious. They ask her, "Ma'am, what is your name?" Silence. "Ma'am, what is your name?" Silence.
Then she speaks..."Where's my daughter?"
The silence was finally broken. I reached over and grabbed her hand, and said, "I'm right here mom."
They then asked her, "Ma'am when is your birthday?" Her response, "December...." Her birthday is April 15th.
She ended up staying in the ICU, and had a brain bleed on the left-side of her head. This started a two year journey for her with memory loss. She couldn't remember the order of events, or even words to speak correctly.
That should be the end of the story....if it weren't for Jesus. Let me explain all of the details that MY Jesus did for us:
1. That annoying little "ding-ding" saved my mom's life. She snapped her seatbelt LITERALLY two minutes before this happened.
2. Jeremy and I NEVER took 2 separate cars to church. We did on August 17th. He would have been in my back seat. I didn't have a back seat left.
3. Even though our seats broke on impact, and the traffic was VERY heavy, I didn't hit oncoming traffic OR anyone to my right.
4. The ambulance just happened to be stopped at the light at Western and Plains. They WITNESSED the wreck happening, and were at the scene instantly. Without this, my mom probably would have died that day.
5. Neither one of us had a single broken bone. I had a bruise on my elbow, my mom had a scratch on her ankle.
6. An hour or so after the wreck, I felt something poking me (in the ER on the stretcher) in my arm. I called the nurse in becasue I was strapped down and couldn't move. She pulled a 5 inch piece of glass out of my sleeve cuff, that never cut me.
7. The man who hit us was said to be driving in speeds 70+....and we surrvived.
8. Julie Helms couldn't make it to the house warming, so she gave our gift at church that morning. I didn't open it. The day after the wreck, I went to get our belongings out and remembered her gift. If was sitting on the console, the same place it was when the wreck occured. The first thing I opened was supposed to be a candle. It was shattered beyone belief. The next thing I opened was a CROSS. A good size cross, with stained-glass in the center. NOTHING chipped, NOTHING cracked, NOTHING broken. My God was there with us.
Our God is an Awesome God He Reigns
From Heaven Above
With Wisdom POWER and Love
Our God is an Awesome God.
Needless to say, we spent our house warming party in the ER.
My mom is now fully recovered (well, as good as it's going to get, right mom?!)....and I still don't drive up Western unless I have to.
God was with EVERY detail, and always is.
"God is our refuge and our strength, an ever present help in time of trouble." Psalm 46:1
|Thank you Lord for every detail.|