The Leaping Deer
Our typical morning drive to school started out innocently enough. We were more than likely laughing at Connor - something we do regularly. We didn't see the deer stalking us behind a forest of trees. And we didn't know why the deer had such an urgent need to cross the road at the precise moment that we drove past. Was there a bake sale across the street? Did he see a really cute female deer? Was he practicing for 'reindeer games'? In any case, it happened so suddenly. All I remember was Connor screeching at the top of his lungs (it was kind of a girly scream if you want to know the truth). It was the most terrifying sight. It was horrendous to behold. Of course, I didn't get a picture as it happened far too suddenly....but it looked something like.....
I KNOW!! Terrifying! Now, imagine that beast jumping over your car - head 0n - and making contact with the roof - while your screaming 15-year old son reverted back to pre-pubescence. It wasn't a good day. Trust me.
The first car crash
I'll just briefly paraphrase this morning's events as it really wasn't that interesting. Really. Um - yeah - I again was preparing to take my children to school. I don't recall exactly, but I'm sure there was a blizzard outside. I was probably recovering from being awake all night caring for my sick cats or something. Ahem. I backed out of the garage and I SWEAR the suburban in the driveway jumped out at me. You should have seen it!! There was no possible way I could have missed hitting it. See very minor damage below.
I only remember two things about the ordeal:
a) Connor screaming like a girl.
b) Todd's reaction
The second and much more significant car crash
This day will live in infamy. I will never forget the phone call. I only remember blurbs of the conversation as the room turned black and I started to feel faint. The words I heard were something like "the car in front of me that I was following hit the front of my car, mom" (huh?) and "the brakes weren't fast enough" and "Do I have to call dad?". Of course, my first reaction was "ARE YOU OKAY"? Really, that was my first reaction. I promise. My second reaction was more along the lines of "YOU DID WHAT?" Then I'm sure there were incoherent ramblings, sobbings, and uncontrollable fetal-position swayings as I thought of what the news from this phone call would do to our insurance rates.
When Darren, our 20 year old son (who, to his credit has never hit another car before this incident) finally dared to come home, this is what Todd and I saw:
And this is what Darren and I saw:
The very next day. November 16.
Jodi's surgery #1
I donned a gown that was open in the back. I was drugged. A vital organ was surgically removed from my neck! I was sent home with not so much as a 'how do you do'! I have nothing else to say about that!
The good news: mission call. The bad news: lab results.
As Todd and I were receiving some unfortunate news about my thyroid surgery lab results (see previous blog) - and while learning that there would be yet another surgery (money hungry doctors!) we were being bombarded by incessant phone calls from Darren and other family members - absolutely giddy with excitement. Yes, the envelope that would tell us where our missionary would be laboring and serving for the next two years had arrived. Darren apparently was holding his future in his hot little hands. "Where are we going to meet?" and "Can we order pizza" and "What if I'm going to Boise" were phrases we heard between the doctor's depressing drivel.
We fled from the office and risked flying deer as we sped to my mother's home. There we would meet like a gaggle of... well, family members I guess, and watch as Darren opened his mission call!
Here is Darren reading his mission call:
Yes, Darren will be muk-lukking around in Russia!! Russia....as in the coldest place on earth. As in communism. As in "don't tell anybody you're American, because the Russians will beat you up". Yeah. That Russia.
This is what Darren thinks about going to Russia for two years (cheesy grin on the right):
This was a somewhat uneventful day except that I found Elora in a heap on the bathroom floor. She was green and sick. Thanksgiving Day. Turkey and dressing and pumpkin pie and everything that is good and holy and delightsome to the taste buds. Poor Elora. This was true tragedy and suffering - more than I could bear to witness. I think she eventually became un-green and was able to enjoy a few delectible morsels.
Second surgery to take out the rest of the thyroid. They stripped me of clothes and dignity. The devils made me stay in the hospital overnight and away from my cats.
The "little" crash.
It is said that bad luck happens in threes. Well, if that is the case, then maybe we had three sets of 'bad luck' threes.
I sent Elora to the store to buy a few things. Based on the events of the past month, I should have been smarter. I should have listened to the inner nag telling me I was a fool to let her take the car. I didn't listen. I gave my child the keys to the only vehicle that hadn't been crashed into! I've replayed the scenario in my mind several times and hope to come to terms with my error in judgment. Hindsight is 20/20 but I truly thought it would be okay.
Elora: Mom - I crashed the car.
I have to interject here. They say there are 5 stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance). I 'm sure I covered all 5 in this conversation.
Me: You did wwww-what?
Elora: I hit a guard rail
Me: Ha ha, Elora. You are funny. (denial)
Elora: Serious mom.
Me: WHAT?? WHO HITS A GUARDRAIL???!!! (anger)
Me: Okay - tell me this is a joke and I won't be mad at you. (bargaining)
Elora: I'm sorry mom. sobbing.
Me: Oh hey no problem. sigh. Darren and I hit cars this month - you should get the opportunity too! (depression).
Elora: Sorry mom. weeping and wailing
Me: Just tell me you're okay. We'll deal with it when you get home. How bad is the damage?(acceptance)
Elora: It's not that bad. I barely hit the corner of the front bumper.
This is what Todd and I saw when she came home:
This is what Elora saw:
In one month's time we have been stalked by a leaping deer; had 2 surgeries (read: mom is now missing vital hormones); we learned that our eldest son is going to communist Russia for 2 years; our 4 vehicles have all been crashed this month; It's Christmastime.
How we are coping:
*Todd is learning to deal with his emotions at 12-step meetings.
*I spend my time weeping uncontrollably.
*We all take the bus wherever we need to go now.
The only light in our lives is the baby of our family who tries to cheer us all up by doing this to her hair:
Bless her little heart. But as much as she's trying to cheer us all up and make us happy - she's NOT going to get a driver's license until she's 25!