Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Close Calls

On Friday as I normally do 4 to 5 times a week I gathered with 8 or 9 good friends to ride bikes through our county to get some exercise and experience some fellowship. Somewhere along the way I got tangled up with my long time riding buddy Pressly and we went down. I don't remember any of the events that happened leading up to our wreck or the 12 hours after that. My friend Owen says I have now time traveled, perhaps so. What I do know is that I woke up in a level 1 trauma center at Baptist Hospital holding my wife's hand. I had no idea where I was, or how I had gotten there. As the events of the day were told to me a great wave of fear swept over me. It was a completely new experience for me. The detachment with reality was very unnerving. What I did find out is that I had gone over the handlebars on my bike and my face took the brunt of the fall. My friend Pressly had a separated shoulder and was transported to another hospital more locally. I had lost a lot of blood and there was some real concern that my head trauma could be critical, thus the ride to Winston Salem.

I've had accidents before, many of them. I've wrecked bikes, torn ACL's (2 in the same knee), been hurt on the job, believe me...I've had my share of ER visits. But this one was palpably different. I had never experienced this level of disorientation and the fear that accompanied it. When Tammy told me I was at Baptist Hospital that was significant. In the area that we live if someone has been sent to Baptist, its bad, I've had friends die there and many who were close to death.

Finally after all the tests, I escaped with some bad lacerations to the face, a broken nose and finger and a concussion, Like I've been telling folks, luckily my face broke my fall or it could have been much worse.

So as I'm processing through the time gaps, my continued short term fogginess and healing of some very painful facial injuries, I'm always trying to learn. What have I learned through this.

Well here's my list:

  1. My wife is amazing. I'm not sure how to expand on that, but if you know her, you know. The devotion, the determination, the steadfastness she has shown me is nothing less a proverb to a most valuable wife. 
  2. My children have learned to love well from their mom and they show it. 
  3. My friends are true. From a waiting room filled with people praying for me, to the visits and the calls, I cannot overestimate the power of friendship. 
  4. Nothing in life is predictable. I suppose I'm as guilty as the next for trying to arrange life to suit my wants, needs and desires. But there's nothing like a scary injury that changes ones perspective. 
  5. Close calls should remind us of what is to come. Injury has a funny way of reminding us that we live in the midst of brokenness. While I was in the ER at least 2 gunshot victims were brought along with a couple of stabbings. Man, this world is broken. Just ride in an EMS, Fire or police vehicle for one day. Its all around us and it invades all our lives at one time or another. Its all broken, but what does the Scripture teach....that all will be made new, the old will pass away. The ER screams "This world is broken!" The Scriptures scream, "All will be made new!"
I don't remember much about Christmas 2017. I know my family was here and there was food and some gifts. But I do remember my advent wreath and through the fog of injury I looked at those candles and remembered the unforgettable truth the Christ was born, Christ was Crucified, Christ is risen and Christ will come again. And whether I meet that day on this side or the other it provides context for today, and hope for tomorrow and ultimately when all things are made new. 

The songs of life- Thanks to mom

My home was filled with music and people growing up. Mom loved music and can play an assortment of instruments but her favorites are th...