So, I think I am ready to tell this story. It happened on this road, last Friday night. This photo (and all the photos in this post) was taken the next morning. After 15 years of driving on snowy, icy roads, I ended up in a ditch for the first time.
I was driving home after dark, all alone. The truck began to fish-tail, and I responded appropriately (take foot off gas, do not step on break even though every ounce of anything in you wants to do that, and try to steer into the direction of the spin, even though every ounce of anything in you wants to steer out of the spin). Went along to about half way up the hill, all the while very concerned about the headlights coming at me, and would they be safe.
Finally, I just gave into the fact that I was going into the ditch, because that was the only way to avoid hitting the oncoming car.
The truck and I left the roadway in a Southwesterly direction, flying through the air towards the other embankment of the ditch somewhat like spear. The ditch is about 10 feet deep, and 20 feet across, although the angle of these photos does not always show that. So it was pretty frightening to e headed across the ditch for the other embankment.
I’ll interrupt the movement here just a moment to tell you a little about my thoughts. As I could feel the truck flying I realized this was not likely to end well. I evaluated the steering wheel as quite a danger to me, and was concerned about whether the airbag would work, since it had never been tried in the 14+ years since I got the vehicle.
I felt a peace that if I died it was going to be okay, and if I was injured, it would hurt like crazy, but I could deal with that – not like I had a choice as I was suspended in mid-air. It did cross my mind that my son and my husband weren’t going to be too pleased with either my death or serious injury, but that was about it.
I braced myself for impact and . . .
It was like jumping on the bed when I was little, if even that.
Seriously, the items on the seat beside me (cell phone, camera, purse) did not even hit the floor boards. T here was no pain, no jarring, no whiplash of my neck, nothing, but a downy soft landing.
And, I was not headed Southwest anymore. I was pointed almost due north, right parallel with the sides of the ditch instead of perpendicular to it. See in the photo above how the tracks leave the road headed towards lower camera left? I was pointed at that yellow house in the distance when I landed.
The next day we went to check out the spot int he daylight, and there were no tire tracks explaining the directional change. No skidding around of the back-end of the truck, nothing. There were lots of cut-up-snow from the tow-truck pulling me out, but nothing to explain the directional change, which would have had to happen long before you get to the drag marks from the tow truck.
In fact, from the point where I left the road to the point where I landed, there were not tracks at all for about 10 feet.
Some how in mid-air I spun around. J was sure to demonstrate this when we were checking out the accident site the next morning:
The end result was I was safe, uninjured, and we drove the truck home with no damage, except the place where the plow attaches was full of snow and dirt and gunk from the smoothest dig into the ground that ever happened.
What went through my mind as I waited for Andy, J, and the tow truck drive to get there was the fact that I was spared means there is still work for me to do.
For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works,
which God has prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10
Those words were on my heart, with the realization that I have not completed all the good works God prepared in advance for me, and thus, I did not die. This makes everything I do seem all that more important because it was important enough for it to get accomplished that I was kept here on earth when the perfect opportunity to take me was presented.
And today I am off to get studded snow tires on the truck – an unwanted expense that we felt we could no longer avoid.
Oh, and a little humor – as we were leaving the crash site the next morning J said “That was the most fun we’ve had as a family in a long time.” I think we need to do more family outings together, and not always to crash sites. Or else he just has a morbid interest in near misses.