Recently Josh and I were selected for a great honor. Our story and picture, along with fifty others, will be displayed at Josh’s work as an example of what the hospital stands for and the people they help. I’ve always thought it was pretty awesome that Josh ended up working for the hospital where I was treated after my car accident. It is also the hospital where Evelyn was born. It holds a special place in our hearts. The above picture is one of many they took. It was a fun and humbling experience.
Some of you may have noticed, if you look very closely at a few of my pictures, that I have no fingers on my left hand. I know this seems like something maybe one might have mentioned sooner, but I really didn’t think it was important. In fact I forget sometimes because I’ve become so accustomed to it.
I’ve mentioned before that I was in a car accident about a month after Josh and I were married, but I’ve never really written about what happened after. Well, the short version is, I rolled my car down a freeway overpass (the result of another driver distracted by her cell phone). My left hand was crushed (later removed entirely due to infection), and I broke my neck and back. I spent three weeks in the hospital, and three months in a halo. It took years to physically heal and acclimate to my hand. I struggled with self esteem issues, especially as a new wife. Josh was by my side, never wavered, and supported me patiently, as he still does.
Now, I thank God for taking my left hand. In fact, it makes me tear up, I’m so thankful. Not having my left hand has forced me to slow down. It is nearly impossible to multi-task one handed. I had to relearn a lot. Tying shoes, chopping veggies, typing, anything you do with two hands. But now, a lot of those things I can actually do better then before my accident. I type faster, chop faster, and tie better bows then I ever did before, because I was forced to slow down. I expect parenting will be the same. I am forced to slow down when changing diapers, dressing, feeding, and playing with Squeaks. And isn’t that a gift!? To slow down and watch, learn, and enjoy her life happening. Enjoy living with her.
Someday, Squeaks will notice my hand, notice that it’s different. I look forward to it. My hand is a visual aid. A visible example of God’s grace, mercy, and His ability to make beautiful things from life’s trials. I did NOT thank God for my accident when it happened. I panicked. I questioned Him. I was angry and scared. Now I can show my daughter the happiness and discipline that come from the trials God allows you to face. I am proof you can clap one handed.