We Walked Away!
Today has had a lot of mixed emotions for me. Jan 3rd 2015 was a day that will always live in my memory as the day that God showed up and protected my family. (I apologize in advance for the length of this post, but there is really no way to shorten it. This is a hard one to put get written down, as I relived it as I wrote it)
My best friend of almost 20 years, Diane, was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in May of the year prior. When she was diagnosed , I immediately made a trip to her house. My husband stayed for a day or so, and then traveled home by himself. He knew that I needed to be there with her while she went through her first treatments. I stayed for several weeks and then came home. Yet, I hadn’t been home long when I felt that I needed to go back. That was basically how I spent the rest of 2014. I would be home for a couple weeks and then head back to Cincinnati to be with Diane and her family. Honestly, I was at her home more than I was at my own that year. I have to say here how AMAZING my own family was during this time!! My husband stayed home and took care of the house, our daughter and son, and most days our 2 grandchildren. He never once complained or asked me to stay home. He is truly the one that God created just for me!! I am so blessed to be able to say I am his wife!!
At any rate, a couple weeks before Thanksgiving while I was in Cincinnati at Diane’s, she took a turn for the worse and we had to take her to the hospital. She ended up in ICU , and we were worried that she would even see Thanksgiving. Thankfully, they were able to send her home on Thanksgiving day. She came home with Hospice care at that point. Even though I had never been away from my family for Thanksgiving, there was no way that I could leave her. I stayed with her and the family until right before Christmas. because she had started to do better, I felt that I could go home and spend it with my family. However, as soon as Christmas was over and the decorations put away, I knew I had to go back to Ohio.
We left the house that morning, gassed up and headed out. We had brought our Boston Terrier with us on this trip as we often did, she loved to go “bye-bye”. She was chilling in the backseat on her little “thrown” of pillows we had made up for her. We had made this trip more times than I can remember since the day she was diagnosed. This particular day, my hubby was driving me up to drop me off so I could spend a couple of weeks with her. I have had 3 neck surgeries and traveling is extremely uncomfortable for me. I was hurting pretty bad that day, , so i had taken some of my medicine and decided I would try to lay my seat back and get comfortable. Maybe I could actually fall asleep for the rest of the trip. So I put a pillow behind my head, grabbed a blanket (it was January, had been raining and was really cold outside) and snuggled under the blanket with my eyes closed. I apparently had fallen asleep because I woke up to a HUGE BANG sound!! It scared the heck out of me. The rest of this went kind of in slow motion for me.
I remember looking over at my husband and asking what that was. He had a panicked look on his face. The look that was on his face , caused me to have sheer panic rise up, I knew we were in trouble!!! By this time, I don’t know if he told me it was a tire issue or I just knew it, but I knew it wasn’t good. I immediately started praying It was one of those moments, where you’re not really praying, I just kept saying the name , Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. That was all I could murmur at the time. I couldn’t think enough to pray. We were on I-75 near Lexington, KY going about 80 mph. We were in my husbands pride and joy, his beautiful blue Dodge Ram Truck. The truck started going sideways towards the embankment, and I remember seeing a solid rock wall.
The rest of this I will tell you based on what my husband told me afterwards. He started cranking the steering wheel hard, doing his best to straighten out the truck. When he realized that wasn’t going to happen, all he could do was try to hit that wall from my side of the truck, instead of head on. Praise God he is the driver that he is!! I am here to tell you that there were angels that surrounded our vehicle at that point. Because, he managed to get the truck positioned so that it would hit that solid rock wall at 80 mph from the side instead of head on. If we would have hit it head on, let’s just say , I would not be here writing this blog post.
At any rate, we hit the wall and rolled at least once and landed on the roof of the truck, upside down on the side of the hwy. I was suspended by my seat belt, hanging upside down. I know I blacked out for a few seconds, but when I came to I couldn’t see my husband. I was seriously disoriented and couldn’t figure out where the dash of the truck was, or where the driver’s seat was supposed to be. It is a crazy feeling when you are hanging upside down like that in a vehicle that has just flipped. . I called for him for what seemed like 15 minutes, but in reality was probably only a couple of minutes. In that couple of minutes time period, I thought he was dead. He wasn’t answering me….dead silence!! I later found out, that he had the wind knocked out of him and couldn’t answer me. I can’t explain to you the emotions I went through in that few minutes time. When he finally answered me, of course I kept asking him if he was ok and he was asking me are you ok? Neither one of us really knew if we were, as we were both still in shock as to what had just happened. My next thought was where was our baby, Sheba, the Boston Terrier?
By this time, people had seen the accident and stopped and were coming up to the truck. They had originally told me to try and get out. There was no possible way I could, although I did try for a minute. I kept asking them to find our dog and to check on my husband. They managed to get him out of the truck, but I had to wait for the ambulance to get there. I will cut this short and say that it basically took them another 40 minutes to get me out. Remember I stated earlier that I have had 3 neck surgeries…well the EMT workers, myself and my husband were all concerned that I had done some serious damage and were extremely cautious in how they moved me. The did eventually get me out, on a stretcher and we were both taken to the closest trauma center. I won’t go into the awful treatment we received at that hospital, except to say, I wouldn’t take my dog to that place!! Speaking of our dog, a wonderful stranger that had stopped to help us, had found her. Praise God she had run up the embankment and NOT into that hwy and she was perfectly, 100% ok!! They took her to a local animal shelter and we were able to pick her up the next day.
Here is even more proof that God was protecting us that day. If I hadn’t laid my seat back, been basically asleep with medicine in my body and had a blanket over me, I more than likely wouldn’t have walked away from this accident. I include a picture here, where you can see the passenger side of the truck. The roof of the truck was laying on the dash Had my seat been in upright position it would have more than likely snapped my neck. The blanket protected me from being more cut up than I was, and the medicine in my body, had me relaxed enough that upon impact, my body didn’t tense up as much as it would have had I not have taken it. I am so thankful that I usually sleep through our road trips!!
Here is a part of the story that I think most people can relate to. When we had got to the hospital and they had finished checking us, X Rays, MRI’s etc. The nurses were asking if they could contact somebody for us. Keep in mind we are 4 hours from home and another 45 minutes to an hour from my best friends house. Due to the fact that all my numbers are stored in my phone, I didn’t know anybody’s phone number!! Let that be a lesson, commit to memory SOMEBODY’S phone number!!!
Let me tell you another way that God showed up that day. A friend of the family of Diane’s, was driving past when we had that wreck and took a picture of a truck that had overturned on I-75, not knowing at the time it was us. They actually sent it to Diane’s daughter. (when you see the picture, keep in mind that embankment is solid rock)
When we didn’t arrive on time, my best friend’s daughter started calling the State Police and Hwy Patrol, and found out there had been a wreck on I-75 at about the time we would have been going through there. They in turn called the hospital we were at, and found out we were there. They contacted our oldest daughter and she immediately headed to Kentucky. She walked in that hospital room in record time. She told me later on that she was in the car and headed that way, before she even found out what had happened. All she knew was that mom and dad were in the hospital and had been in a wreck. I am so thankful, that our son who was 15 at the time was on vacation with a friend, or he would have been in the backseat that day. Here is the best part about that wreck, although my husband’s beautiful blue truck was totaled, he and I walked away from that accident!! By all rights, we shouldn’t have lived through that one. I am still amazed as I look back on that day that we are here. My husband had some broken ribs, and I had some pretty bad cuts, but for the most part we were ok!!! It is humbling to say the least to go through something like that, and it makes you look at life completely different! You tend to not take things for granted and are thankful for each and every day you have with your kids and family. If you have read this post to the end, I encourage you to tell your loved ones how much you care for them. Don’t let your kids leave the house without saying, I love you. You never know, life can change in an instant and you won’t get that chance to say it.
Sadly, as I sit here and write this blog post, my best friend has passed away. She lost her battle with cancer pm July 29th, 2015. I am still so thankful that I spent as much time in Ohio as I did!! After we got out of the hospital that day, we continued on our trip to her house. Now granted, because he and I were in so much pain, we didn’t stay but an hour or so and then we headed back to the house. My kids were having FITS that we didn’t go straight home, but my thought process was darn it….I was going to finish my initial goal, which was go see my best friend!! I mean why else did we make the trip to begin with? Once we came home and healed, it took me another month before I was able to go back to see her, but I did and continued to do so until she lost her battle.