In 1995 I was in a car wreck. It amazes me now to think that happened 15 years ago. We were crossing a state highway in East Tennessee and a pick-up broadsided the passenger door, where I was sitting working a crossword puzzle.
Let me say here we were technically at fault. The truck, which we didn’t see at first, had the right of way. Because the visibility at that intersection was so poor, the accident was ruled “no fault.” We weren’t ticketed but also there was no big financial settlement. (People always want to know this.)
The big farm truck lay down no skid marks before it plowed into our car. I wish I knew he had at least TRIED to avoid hitting me. I also wonder if he was even mildly curious about the welfare of the woman who was life-flighted to a Knoxville hospital. Or if he was only bothered about the dent in his front bumper, which my insurance repaired.
Diagnosed with a broken pelvis, I spent time in a hospital, a hospital bed, a wheelchair, on a walker and a cane before I went back to work two months later. Here are some lessons learned from that experience:
The value of good insurance. My wonderful State of Tennessee Blue Cross paid 95% of my hospital bill and wonderful Geico paid the value of my car and never raised my rates. I had enough sick days banked to see me through.
Just a bit about being handicapped. A server in the mall cafeteria asked my daughter what I wanted to eat (like I couldn’t hear or speak). An automatic door closed on me. I missed singing the Christmas cantata. Most choir lofts are not handicap accessible.
Another lesson about children. Our six-year-old boy was in the back seat. He was unhurt, but told his aunt it was his fault. He had been playing with his action figures and “probably making too much noise.” Why do children blame themselves no matter how far fetched the scenario?
The sustaining grace of intercessory prayer. As news of my accident spread to family and friends I was placed on prayer lists. By Sunday, I knew I was being lifted in prayer in 10 different congregations (that I know of) from three denominations. I felt confident this would not be a permanent injury – I would recover completely. And that’s exactly what happened.