…they pull me.
Perhaps it was because, late one night at the age of 7, my family was practically crushed like an aluminum can after a drunk driver ran us off the road, coming home from a friend’s Chuck E. Cheese birthday soiree.
Everyone was fine–except me. I couldn’t walk the next day. I had to have the fluid sucked out of my knee while being held down by four grown men, my parents forced to listen to my screams from down the hall. Then, more procedures and shots and crazy nuclear x-rays shooting my knee up with some glow-in-the-dark liquid, for which I needed a pain shot to withstand the actual shot.
Why me, God?
“God” and I started to have regular conversations in the bathtub as I tried to pray my way to healing, blessing and having gratitude for each of my limbs and joints. (I didn’t want any body part to feel left out.)
Pain. Trauma. Procedures. Surgery. Hospitalization. Recovery.
Mom and Dad sneaking some McDonald’s “happy meals” into the hospital to cheer me up.
I remember being on the surgery table. The doc came at me with a mask to gas me up. Drugged, but still somewhat coherent, I reflexively grabbed his wrist to stop him. Musta been some past-life experience of “been here, done that.”
No, thank you.
After he explained, I allowed him to continue. It was to be my first out-of-body experience. Without trying, I became light and felt “myself” rise up off the table. Looking down from about six feet up, I could see them beginning the surgery on my body.
I started reciting the shema, the Jewish affirmation that “God is One,” which I was taught to say in Hebrew if you think you’re about to die. But I was saying it to save me. That’s the last thing I remember before waking up with a very dry mouth.
Wheelchair and a full-length cast for months. Had to get in there with a ruler to lessen my itchiness. Then, rehab for another six months. Painful. No sports for a full year.
All of this to say that my innocent childhood ended the day of our car wreck. And my reflective life began. Reflective Alex. (I think I became an introvert that day, too.)
Needless to say, after all this, I saw life and the world quite differently. The experience left a psycho-spiritual mark on me much as the surgery had left its physical reminder.
I’m not in charge.
I don’t run the show.
I don’t have it “all together”–and never will.
I can now say that I’m grateful for this “accident.” Because if I hadn’t had this experience, I might never have cultivated such a deep connection to–and with–the Divine.
I might never have listened, deeply, to my Soul… searching for truth–my truth.
And… I might never have had the opportunity to share what I’m about to share with you.
You’re not in charge.
You don’t run the show.
You don’t have it all together–and never will.
And that’s fine.
In fact, it’s perfect.
Listen to your soul.
“Before you tell your life what you intend to do with it, listen for what it intends to do with you.” ~Parker Palmer