A Gift! When I least expected it.

on March 31, 2007

Life is full of little inconveniences. Sometimes those little “inconveniences” seem to happen all at once.

A week and a half ago I was driving to work as I normally do, a bus thought it was okay to merge back into traffic while I and another car were still in the lane. So the car in front of me sped up to avoid the bus and I did too. Unfortunately she had to stop fast. I tried to “stop fast” too and slammed on my brakes. I had one of those surreal moments that you see on TV where everything goes in slow motion. I could hear my breaks screech and the crunch as I slam right into the back of the car in front of me. I notice not only the sound but the hood of my car folding in like an accordion. I catch my breath and jump out of the car to check the other driver. She is okay and only has a broken bumper. We hug and both offer profuse apologies. Next the police, the tow tow truck, the call to Donna to come get me, the call to insurance, gathering the crap out of my now crunched up car, and trying to catch my breath and figure out what to do.

Gratefully I do have a car to borrow for the next 3 weeks that my mother just gave to my brother 2 days earlier. I beg it back from him. It’s old and it’s noisy but it will do. I proudly christen the car “The K-Town Ghetto Cruiser”. I think my mother was offended by the name, but it fits.

The day of the wreck I stay home from work. I am mentally and physically exhausted. My neck is sore and the adrenalin of the morning has left my body feeling ragged. Unfortunately I turn to ice cream to soothe my frazzled spirits. It is wonderful and one bowl turns into 2. The next 4 days are a blur of chocolate, ice cream, and cookies. This of course is accompanied by the mental lashings I continue to give myself. First I berate myself over the wreck and then over the fact that I am eating to cope. Over and over I question and accuse myself and vow the next day will be better.

Gratefully by the end of Sunday I am getting myself together. I reminded myself that the mental lashings in the past have never been helpful. I reminded myself of the tools and techniques I had learned recently from a very good therapist. By Monday — I was back on my game. I’d pushed the negativity away, loving the exercising, and nourishing my body and listening to it and trusting myself again. I felt such gratitude for the Lords mercies and his help in getting me back to the state of mind that was productive and most of all peaceful.

Tuesday was great too. I went to the temple on my lunch and really felt the Spirit remind me again the relationship of our bodies and spirits and Heavenly Fathers divine plan and my place in it. Things were good.

Wednesday I arrived to work to discover I have a flat tire on the “Ghetto Cruiser”. Big sigh! What an inconvenience. I go into the office and do a few things and ask one of the HR Mikes to come help me change the tire. So — either because he’s just a nice guy – or because I sit on the other side of the cubicle from him and he knows I have “dirt” on him – he graciously agrees.

We put on the spare that looks a little low on air – but should get me the couple blocks to Big O Tires. Unfortunately as I pull out of the parking space the spare goes completely flat! Seriously — how can this happen to me? First the wreck, the flat tire, and NOW the spare tire is flat too? Does Heavenly Father just think this is funny? I go back up to the office and ask the “other Mike” to take me and my original flat tire to the Big O. He too graciously agrees. We drop it off and I come back and work a couple hours. The “Other Mike” takes me back to get the tire. Only – it’s not ready. In fact, they tell me, it’s not fixable. I need a new tire! Aurgh! It’s not even my freakin’ car! So “Other Mike” takes me back to the parking lot at work. We call the “First Mike” to come and take the spare off my car. He comes down and again jacks up my car and takes the tire off. “Other Mike” takes me back to Big O -to get the spare pumped up and pray it holds air. We go back to the parking lot where “First Mike” puts it back on my car. Finally I drive my car (ever so slowly) to the Big O and purchase a brand new tire for The Ghetto Cruiser. As I am driving out of the Big O parking lot, I sigh loudly– and realize it’s way past lunch time and I’m starving. I deserve something delicious and wicked! Ice Cream? Chocolate? French Fries? But . . . I stop myself and ask “how will I feel in an hour if I choose those things”? I know how I’ll feel. So I ask “what will nourish my body?” I know what I need. I need vegetables and protein so I go and get a deliciously wicked salad. When I’m done eating, I feel completely satisfied. No mental beatings and no guilt. I actually feel good. I went about my day and worked out at the gym like I planned after work. Even better — I realized that I had had a stressful day AGAIN with a vehicle and I didn’t turn to food and destructive thinking like I had a week ago. Could it be I really am changing my thinking?

Thursday I happen to have an appointment with the therapist and I recount the events for him. After I tell him my success of dealing with the tire incident better than the week before, he immediately says “don’t you see, the flat tire was a gift!” As frustrating as it was. It really was a gift from Heavenly Father. He knew I needed to show myself that I AM capable of handling myself in stressful situations. And that treating myself with such disrespect after I wrecked the car was so unproductive. Plus — I learned that there are men out there who still treat girls like ladies. The “Mikes” wives should be proud of them.


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