My Accident and Miracle
My Final Thoughts
There are a couple of key things I failed to mention about my March 6th experience. These are things that kind of happened in the aftermath of it all–or for some things, I didn’t realize until after it was all over.
First, I learned that just because a miracle happens to us, it doesn’t mean that we are exempt from hardship, including the hardship that is connected with the miraculous event. In fact, the miracle itself is often a result of never-ending faith, hope, and constant prayer . . . like the one I said in my heart over and over again until the day my sweet Baby Girl was born. Miracles take hard work to happen. It is after we show our belief and faith that the miracles happen.
And even after the miracle has happened, things don’t automatically become peachy-perfect for us. But it is that miracle that sometimes helps us keep going. I learned this firsthand. After the accident, when dust had cleared and the excitement calmed down, I found that I had a lot of leftover fear. Somehow the invincibility of youth that I had felt before was gone. I came so close
to dying, and my brain kept telling me that it could easily happen again–anytime, any place. I had a lot of mental and emotional hills to climb. Coming so close to death had left me vulnerable and weighed heavily on my mind.
One emotional hill I still climb even today is that I found out that I would no longer be able to have children after this accident. I love kids and love being a mom. And sometimes still, the emptiness of this reality consumes me. Even though I know I am so blessed with my beauties and I adore them, my heart still aches for what might have been. Only through the peace that the Lord can give does this go away. But it’s an on-going process as it resurfaces regularly.
Also, my worries increased ten-fold. There were no clear answers about my baby girl for the rest of my pregnancy, so I drained myself with worries for what the Lord may have in store for me when she was born. I clung to that hope that if He had helped me stay alive through a horrible accident, then He would be with me through the rest of the pregnancy and birth. I knew now that our lives were completely in His hands.
Not only that, but husband quickly got behind in his medical school work. He was in his hardest year of med school and had the most important test of his medical school career scheduled for 3 days before our Baby Girl was to be born (and this test ended up not going well at all due to the stress and worries that were so tangled in our daily lives at that time). It was an extremely stressful period for us. Sometimes we were so sick with worry.
And yet, I still remember that glorious feeling that came over me the moment my Baby Girl was finally born in June of 2007. A beautiful, tiny baby. Only 5 pounds, but with all her fingers and all her toes. Just like my other babies, she was perfect to me. My heart was bursting with love. I had truly been blessed. Another miracle had occurred. I named her after my Grandma Phillips who had died only 3 months before my accident. I often felt she was one of my guardian angels through it all.
The hardest thing though ended up being the post-traumatic stress that Little son went through. I was very consumed with my pregnancy and the many worries of the time that I didn’t realize until later how much my little boy was suffering from what he witnessed. Yes, I knew he was scared from only being centimeters away from being hit by the van and seeing me fly off a bridge. But the impact of it remained for more than a year. I found that he couldn’t verbalize or come to terms the fear that
he had experienced.
I spent many months, even after my baby girl was born, dealing with his extreme tantrums, nightmares every night, bed-wetting, sadness, and low self-esteem. My happy, fun-loving child was now afraid of the sound of loud cars revving their engines. Parking lots were horrible for him. He became very clingy to me and yet angry at all of us. My little boy was unhappy all
the time. In his mind, the world was no longer safe. It took many prayers, priesthood blessings, and then a lot of hard work on my part to help him heal. I had to be more patient with him then I had at any other time in my life. I had to constantly show him pure love and remind him of the safe and happy things in the world.
This process took me 2 years.
By the time Little Son was 5 years old, he had finally forgotten the accident completely and he was himself again. And now he only remembers bits and pieces. Another miracle.
THINGS I LEARNED
I learned much from this experience. I learned that TIME IS A GIFT. The time we have each day can be taken away at any moment. Each day we have together is worth making good and that life is not to be wasted. It was quite sobering for me to realize I could have died that day. I reflected often on what my last moment with each person I loved could have been. Was I happy with the way I was living my life? I learned that none of the superficial things in my life that had been so important the day before, were even on my radar now. I was grateful for the smallest things. I wanted to braid my daughter’s hair. I wanted to clean up the milk my son spilled. I wanted to let the dishes sit in the sink while I snuggled my baby. While I was on bedrest, my husband quit his studies for a time, and he would sit on the bed with me and we would talk for hours and watch old TV reruns. We treasured every moment. NOTHING ELSE MATTERED. My hairstyle, my weight, my house being clean, whether or not I had the latest furniture or clothes.
Life is busy and mundane. There’s really no way out of that. But I realized that I wanted my life to good. I wanted to be happy, no matter how short or how long it would be, and no matter how mundane or busy it was. I began looking for the positive in each moment. Instead of waiting for “things to get better” I try to make things better. I’m not perfect at this, but in general I try to find the good. I still get sarcastic and cranky. I still get impatient and annoyed. But, this experience often comes into my mind during hard or frustrating moments, and I remember that good things do happen. My kids who are now teens and tweens sometimes make fun of me for being too much like a Pollyanna or an Annie when things get hard around our house. And maybe it seems like I have a false sense of reality to some people, but I decided that the choices I make and the attitude I have really determine my reality.
Well, anyhow . . . it’s all over now. I believe each of us has healed and is living life normally now. We look back on this whole experience with humble hearts and we remember how God did not forget us that day. This experience changed me in so many ways. May I always remember these lessons I have learned:
Each day Is a gift and our moments together are precious—no matter how often or few and far between they are.
Good people still exist in this world.
God is gracious. He does want to help us and bless us. Faith and prayer are real. They bring down the powers of heaven to help us in our lives. My baby’s life is a testimony that God is watch over all.
This is just one story that proves that.