In February of 2016, I was in a horrible and wonderful wreck. I know it's hard to understand how a wreck could be a wonderful thing, so let me explain what I mean.
My 4 kids and I were on the way to church on Wednesday night when I fell asleep or passed out (we're still not sure exactly what happened). I was pregnant with our fifth child at the time. I drove over the curb and a huge concrete pipe, by a tree and a fence post, and into a pond. I woke up when we hit the water.
The van landed with the side up and I was able to get out and put my kids on the shore so that most of them didn't even get wet. None of us had a scratch. If you look at the way the van landed and the path we took, it doesn't make sense why the car didn't flood. Before the wreck, driving into the water was one of my biggest fears. At one point, I had an anxiety attack going over a bridge because I don't have enough arms to save my children if they were all in the water at the same time.
The way our van landed was like it was in the palm of a hand - safely held. And that's what I believe. I believe that in the midst of my great fear, my Father God held me and my family in his hand and kept us safe. It has become the most reassuring thought when I am afraid.
I was counseled by a professional to do some physical type of therapy - whether writing, painting, or even exercising. He told me that professionals had learned between the Oklahoma City Bombing and 9/11 that this type of physical, emotional therapy had drastically reduced the number of suicide and PTSD after severe traumatic incidents.
I chose painting. And what you see above is my interpretation of our wreck. I painted my feelings and emotions onto the canvas.
Everything since then has been an extension of what happened in that wreck.
I also want to tell you that it is scary to share this story with you because I know how people judge parents who make mistakes like this. I feel like, by falling asleep or passing out, I failed my family and put my children in danger. To be honest, I wasn't taking care of myself and I wasn't emotionally healthy. This wreck was a wake up call. I was a wreck, I got in a wreck... and it has changed my life.