A split second; that’s all it takes to change everything. On January 19th, (your dad’s 60th birthday, sorry dad.) you and your daughter are making the daily trek to work. It’s winter, the roads are slippery, so you’re using four wheel drive and taking it easy; but it doesn’t matter. The Jeep losses traction and you begin to slide.
The next second finds you spinning out of control and rolling down the embankment. You are screaming….your daughter is screaming.
A second later, you are hanging upside down wondering if you are okay and if your daughter is okay. Now things have changed, you just don’t know how much they’ve changed yet.
After a quick assessment, you are both frightened and pretty shaken up but you seem fine (and you are thankful no one else was involved). You both manage to release your seat belts and lower yourselves to the roof of the car. A fellow commuter sees the accident and stops to help, she calls 911, helps you out of the Jeep and lets you sit in her car and wait for help to arrive. She is a wonderfully kind young woman.
The State trooper finally gets to the scene and proceeds to treat you like some sort of criminal. He lets you in the car long enough to take your information and insult your intelligence. Once he has what he needs he tells you to get out of the car. No ambulance is sent to the scene to asses you, so you and your daughter just stand in the snow and five degree temperatures in business attire for 15 minutes while the tow truck driver pulls your vehicle out of the ravine. Fortunately, he is a very nice and compassionate man and he takes you to a gas station to meet your husband and future son-in-law who were coming to the rescue. (the trooper is still sitting at the scene in his nice warm car when you leave)
It’s at about this time you realize you are not as fine as you thought. There is a good size bump on the back of your head and it hurts. But you don’t think it’s too big of a deal so you go home put on your pj’s and call it a day. By evening, you don’t feel terrible, but think you should have probably been examined by a medical professional. Your husband calls the doctor in the morning and makes an appointment. Once the doctor sees you, you are immediately sent to the emergency room for a CT scan. They determine you have a concussion and should be able to return to work the following Monday. They send you home with a couple prescriptions and orders to rest. So that’s what you do.
Monday rolls around, you still don’t feel great but you head to work anyway. After a few hours you realize you can’t concentrate, sounds are really loud, lights are really bright, your emotions are difficult to control and simple tasks are impossible to do. You call it quits and go home. That’s the last time you have been to the office since.
When you get home your husband takes you to the ER again. They determine that you have Post Concussion Syndrome, they prescribe more drugs and tell you to follow up with your physician; which you do.
It’s been almost seven weeks since the accident. You are on medical leave from work and see the doctor every two weeks, you take so many medications; you still do not feel better. Light and sound still hurt, reading makes you cross-eyed, you have a constant headache, you can’t drive, being around groups of people and out in public is stressful, you are always tired and you ride a constant and ridiculous emotional roller coaster. Even using the computer makes you angry (in fact typing this blog entry has been a test of will power and emotion; you will need a nap when you are finished.) Tomorrow you have another CT scan (and you are a little concerned about what it might reveal). In three weeks you finally have an appointment at a concussion clinic.
The journey continues and it’s not a lot of fun. But you are hopeful; because God is faithful. Since you haven’t been able to do much, you’ve had time to reflect on and appreciate many things: The blessing of having good friends and family. Seeing your husband and children step up and take care of the things that are normally yours to worry about. Seeing them step up and take care of you; and learning to graciously accept their help and love. Being grateful that your daughter came out of the accident unscathed and that things didn’t end up much worse than they are. The blessing (and responsibility) of a healthy and fit body and knowing this is temporary and that you can be healthy again someday. The importance of chasing a few dreams, because time is in limited supply. But mostly, remembering to trust the Lord in all circumstances because He will never leave or forsake you.
Be thankful in every moment because a split second can change everything.