08 January 2008

So, Where WERE You??

I came across this beautiful portion of Psalm 139 today while reading:

"I will give thanks to You,
for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well."

Had a bit of a surprising reaction to it: tears. OK, now, anyone who knows me even slightly knows that one of the powers I was given at birth was the ability to cry at the drop of a hat... but this usually happens for good reasons. :) I am easily moved, and wouldn't have it any other way. However.... In choir not long ago we did a piece that was Psalm 139 set to glorious music--the sort of music that sticks in your head. And thereby hangs a tale.

Several folks have noticed, and sent me notes offline concerning, the fact that I didn't post pretty much from the end of October until now. There's a bizarre reason for that. On Hallowe'en morning I toddled off to work (60 miles away; I live in the rural sticks, don'tcha know), with a cheesecake sitting in the front passenger-side foot well of my beloved little sedan. Not just ANY cheesecake, mind you: it was Frankenstein-green, and featured pistachios. It was glorious and (as was later discovered) tasted Pretty Darn Good (tm). It was for the Hallowe'en party at my office in the Infamous Tentmaker Job (tm), since we've established a tradition of shedding our seriousness a couple days a year and having parties. I was going to dress up as a Red Sox player (I know, mixing fun and religion again... *snork*...) and had my costume in the back seat, along with the paper plates, plastic cutlery, and divers decorations, since I was one of the Party Instigators.

Never made it.

Came awfully close to never making it anywhere, ever again, had my guardian spirits not been really, really watchful.

For reasons still unknown, I blacked out at the wheel on a back street near my former home. A number of things conspired to keep me alive and keep those I almost hit in the same shape: it was rush hour, yet there were no other cars nearby. It was near an elementary school, yet all the kids were safely in class by a few minute's timing. I had been going uphill about the time I blacked out, so I wasn't going fast when the car went off the road (only about 5 feet in, mind!), struck a tree and divested it of about a foot of bark, then car, me, and pieces of tree ended up on a retaining wall. I did not hit the woman who was about to leave her driveway, because something knocked a piece of paper off her front seat--and she braked to catch it. I did not hit her neighbor who was taking out his trash--because he paused at the astonishing sight of an unconscious woman in an auto that was slowly moving toward his neighbor lady's tree.

Somehow I had gone about half a mile from where I last remembered being, and come to rest in their yard. The two neighbors were kind, helpful, and compassionate. The police and the EMTs were thorough and considerate. And I found myself in hospital, with nothing worse than a lump on the side of my head. Go figure...

In the ER, the first thing they found turned out to be the dealie: I had everything else as normal as normal could be, except the electrolyte potassium was "oddly low" according to the nice man who took my blood and did the tests. They explained as to how this could cause muscles like the heart to temporarily take a rest, thus lowering blood to the brain and causing unconsciousness... but no one could tell me how the drop occurred. We all pretty much agreed that I have superb guardian angels....

So where does Psalm 139 come in? Well, my doctors ordered every test they could think of, including MRIs, 24-hour monitoring, and all that. They told me I had the brain of a 30-year-old (I'm 51) and didn't get the joke when I said very seriously, "Hmm, she'll probably be wanting it back sooner or later then, you think??" :) And they ordered an ultrasound of my heart.

Now mind... I've seen ultrasound before. Watched my son wave at me from within my womb, watched friends' soon-to-be kids do likewise. And yes, I cried at the very sight of it, for it is indeed an astonishing thing. But somehow, laying there in that awful hospital gown, watching my very own heart beat on TV, seeing how wonderfully regular and strong it was... the music came into my head: "I am fearfully and wonderfully made... my soul knoweth that full well...." And to the dismay of the young man doing the test, I started to cry. Tears of thanksgiving... tears of grateful joy, tears of delayed reaction to everything that had happened. Took a while to explain, but then he told me quite seriously: "Happens fairly often, I just wanted to be sure you weren't squicked or something." *grins* Kids these days...

That and some basic fallout from same contributed to my absence from the blogosphere. My beloved little sedan is gone, alas, for it cost more than it was worth to fix it up; I am now the proud owner of a green pickup truck and 72 months of vehicle payments. But I was reminded in my reading today that it had been a rather close run--and the grateful tears came rushing back. I'm glad to be here!

And I'm glad you're all here too. Prayers forthcoming for all the concerns expressed in various places; may God walk with you always!


Rev SS said...

WOW! Amazing story. Glad everyone is okay. Fearfully and wonderfully made ... and sustained. Praise God.

Ruth said...

Yes, I am so glad you're okay and no one was hurt. a woman in my congregation blacked out, just a blink, really, and caused an accident that killed someone. She told me recently: I can't look in a mirror anymore. Praise God that you don't share that story. But are you (or your insurance carrier) worried about it happening again?

Rev. Sharon said...

Thank you both for your comments! Ruth, my doctors put me on potassium supplements and nothing similar has happened. We're still trying to find out what caused it in the first place, but that's a fair concern. I only drive now when I am absolutely feeling healthy, and I thank God every day for the grace He gave to me that morning. My prayers will be with your parishioner as well.

jledmiston said...

Also glad you're okay. I'm incredibly impressed with your "Loose Canon" mo. Bless you -

Plain Foolish said...

I'm glad you're doing better, too! And kudos to your guardian angel!

Devora posting from her non-sca account.