Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Looking For The Blessings In Disguise

We started 2010 with high hopes for a better year after a rather traumatic 2009, but it appears we are off to a rocky start.

Last Saturday, Sean and I were sitting a stop light on our way home from his basketball game when an elderly man plowed into the back of our minivan, sending our van into the back of the vehicle stopped in front of us.

Fortunately, I was far enough away from the little Honda ahead of us (which contained a father and his young daughter) that the damage to the front of the van was not severe and the Honda barely had a scratch. The back of my van, however, had caved in and the car that hit us was totaled.

I called 911 and requested an ambulance at the scene because the elderly couple in the car that hit us were obviously injured. The woman in the passenger seat, who was blind, was screaming. She apparently was not wearing a seatbelt and her head hit the windshield. The gentleman seemed to be in better shape at first, but quickly bacame agitated. He said he was diabetic and could not remember the last time he had an insulin shot and complained of pain in his chest.

The police believe the man was going into shock due to low insulin levels. A witness said he was travelling about 35 miles per hour and never hit his brakes before crashing into us. As of the weekend, police were unable to talk to him because his condition was very unstable.

I have not heard any more about this couple but am keeping them in my prayers. The police indicated they would let me know if the gentleman did not make it and would send out a detective to speak to me as part of their investigation. I figure no news is good news.

As for me, my back took a good wrenching as a result of being thrown back and forth, but there are no vertebrate fractures or ruptured disks. The soreness should go away in a few days.

At first we thought Sean had escaped unscathed. He was seated in the middle of the van and his knees had hit the seat in front of him, but he had no pain or obvious injuries.

On Sunday night, he started complaining about pain in his left knee and could not put weight on his leg. I took him to his doctor on Monday morning, who said the knee was swollen but did not suspect any major damage. However, he ordered an x-ray just to be sure. Unfortunately, the x-ray revealed that Sean's left knee is fractured.

He is now on crutches with his knee wrapped in an ace bandage, but is pain-free as long as he keeps weight off of his leg. A visit to an orthopedic surgeon on Friday will let us know the next step.

As upsetting as it is to have my child injured, I am trying to remember how much worse it could have been. I try to make it a habit not to stop right on top of other vehicles and was about six feet behind the car in front of me. Had I been closer, the impact to the front of the van would have been more severe, seriously injuring not only both Sean and I but also the father and daughter in the Honda. It could have also sent that car into the one in front of it.

This is also the first time since I lost my job that I am actually glad not to be working outside my home. I can now take Sean to and from school instead of having him struggle to get on and off the school bus in crutches.

I think the best thing any of us can do in these situations is look for those little blessings in disguise and thank God that situations and circumstances were not different. It is truly amazing how some minor decision or small annoyance can turn out to make the biggest difference.

I suppose there is some truth to the saying that everything happens for a reason. God truly does work in mysterious ways sometimes.

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