If you read parts 1 & 2 of my miracle, I hope you will learn from some of my mistakes and experiences.
Yes, this terrible accident was 19 years ago, but rarely a day goes by that I don’t think about it because I still have metal in my ankle and by end of most days it is swollen and a little sore. I should have listened to the advice of the doctors and taken them seriously when told “do not attempt to walk too soon!” It’s not easy for a Type A personality to sit in a wheelchair month after month so I pushed myself and was walking in less than 6 months. I was mighty proud of my accomplishment but later realized there’s much to be learned from the Scripture in Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” NIV Bible. Also from Proverbs 13:10 “Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.” (KJV) Pride certainly played a role in pushing me out of that chair and off the crutches, and my haughty spirit influenced other decisions such as refusal to hire an attorney to pursue legal action against Ford and Firestone. Feeling rather smug and self-righteous, I scorned advice to sue because I believed our society to be much too litigious. Unfortunately, our out of pocket expenses over the years have far exceeded the insurance coverage. I often wonder how many who were hurt in the same way felt like I did at the time—thankful to be alive and too tired to entertain the thought of a court battle. I’m not sure it was a good idea to let Ford and Firestone off the hook. I pray families whose loved ones were seriously injured or killed in these accidents fared far better.
I truly believe the most important lessons learned are these: 1) Don’t look back! That fateful morning I had the strangest sense of foreboding that I shouldn’t get behind the wheel of the car. There were other options, but I refused to listen to that still, small voice. Nevertheless, DON’T look back!! 2) Don’t wallow in self-pity! I am preaching to myself on that point because there are still days when my hip hurts, the replaced knee acts up a bit, and I walk wobbly which prompts some to make the observation that I must have hurt myself because of comments like “Oh, did you take a fall? I see you’re walking with a limp.” My response is usually “No, it’s just an old war injury. I fought the tree and the tree won!” 3) The greatest lesson of all is that life is a treasure, a blessing, and each day is one to be cherished. I do sincerely hope you haven’t been bored by this long, three-part saga. As G. K. Chesterton said so many years ago, “There are no uninteresting things, only uninterested people.” I praise God for those of you who faithfully read my ramblings and are truly interested in what’s on my heart. Stay well and drive with care! Seriously!!!!