Monday, September 19, 2011

Packages


The saying goes “Good things come in small packages.” And they do, they really REALLY do.  Anything that comes wrapped in a small square, or rectangle box makes any girl’s eyes start to twinkle.



But good things also come in extremely large packages. 



At least it did for me--once.



It was the summer before my senior year.  It was filled with volleyball at the beach, basking in the sun, and time making memories with friends.  It was one of those summers where I didn’t have a care in the world.



One day in August, some girlfriends and I decided to get some ice cream at our local Baskin N’ Robbins and we took my younger brother with us.  After filling up on too much Cookie Dough Ice Cream we went back to my house to do something, or get something…I don’t remember.



As we were leaving in my friend’s car and heading up the steep hill that we lived on I remembered that I forgot that I told my mom I would drop some clothing off at the dry cleaners that day for her.  I told my friend who was driving a 5 speed stick shift that we had to go around the block because I forgot something at the house.  She decided it would be quicker to just back down the hill. 



Instead of putting the stick shift into Reverse, she put it into neutral.  We started backing down the hill and the car started going too fast.  My friend got scared, slammed her foot on the brake which caused them to lock up.  We swerved (did I mention we were going backwards?) and the back tires hit the curb directly across the street from our driveway. 



When the tires hit we were going at a fast enough speed that the car flipped up (we were literally sitting on our rear bumper) and started falling backwards.  Thankfully there was a line of holly trees that slowed our speed some.  I remember the holly branches coming in the windows of the car and immediately taking residence inside the entire cab.  The roof of the car hit the holly tree, taking it out by the roots and then the car fell to the ground.  By the guidance of the holly tree and goodness knows what else, the cab of the car miraculously landed into a rockery bank in our neighbors’ yard.  A rockery bank that just so happened to fit the cab of the car perfectly.  A rockery bank that if the car had moved an inch either way would have smashed the car and everything in it, flat as a pancake.



But it didn’t.  It held the car up, which gave us a space that was only a foot high on one side for all four of us to crawl on our hands and knees over broken glass out of. 



Surviving that accident was a gift.  A gift that was wrapped in bent metal, broken glass, and prickly holly branches.  But it was the greatest gift of my life because it allowed me to receive so many other wonderful, breathtaking, and life changing gifts ever since that summer’s day. The most important of these are:



The gift of my best friend and the love of my life, who did me the honor of becoming my husband.



The gift of the three beautiful boys we created together.



The gift of memories we create as a family each and every day.



On that fateful day I was given the gift of time.



So while I absolutely adore things that come in small neatly wrapped beautiful packages. 



I have a soft place in my heart for the one package that was given to me that was wrapped in dirt, stone, twisted metal, skin cutting glass shards and prickly holly leaves. 



For it gave me this, it gave me my life as I know it today, and I am forever grateful.




Linking up with LaurenNicole Gifts talking about the BEST gift you’ve ever received.

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54 comments:

Mommy Needs a Vacation said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE this post!!!!

Shell said...

Oh, that gave me chills!

Krista @ Not Mommy of the Year said...

Oh my... Just oh. my. Such a great post.

simply heidi said...

Wow - life can change in an instant. What an amazing story.

MommaKiss said...

Whew. Now, that is one fabulous gift, indeed. Talk about fate or a guardian angel looking out for you.

Regina Richards said...

I am so glad you survived to give us, all these years later, the gift of this inspirational post!

Kimberly said...

Wow.
Just wow.
What an amazing thing to have happened to you...sometimes it takes something like that to make us realize how blessed we are. For me I know that my postpartum depression experience has taught me so much about myself and has made me feel really blessed ;)
I don't take things for granted.

Alison@Mama Wants This said...

That, truly is a gift. Thanks for sharing and writing this beautiful post!

Elena said...

That right there is an amazing gift! I would be grateful as well!

MamaMash said...

Chills! Saw this happening in my head, oh wow. You did such a great job of putting us in the moment. I am glad you survived that!

Missy said...

SUCH a great post. I love this gift!

Rach (DonutsMama) said...

Wow. That is truly a miracle. I'm so glad you all were ok.

Elaine A. said...

Wow. Just WOW.

I can see how you'd be more grateful for this wonderful life you are living.

xo

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Mommy Needs A Vacation,

I'm so glad you liked it. That really means a lot to me.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Shell,

It still gives me chills to this day.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Krista,

Thank you so much.

Kate F. @katefineske said...

Wow. That WAS a great gift... A great gift that NOBODY could ever forget.

P.S. I am still a bit reminiscent of the days of summer that were care free... I love my summers now... But the beginning of your post really reminds me that there was a time (that I didn't realize AT the time) that was carefree... Oh, those were the days :)

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

simply heidi,

Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. I truly appreciate it.

Life can definitely change in a single moment!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

MommaKiss,

It really is the best gift of my life. Someone or something obviously felt that I had more to do here. I'm extremely thankful for that.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Regina,

Thank you so very much for coming to my little space in the blogosphere.

I'm glad I survived it as well. Every single day I am glad.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Kimberly,

Every day is a gift. Every single day! I'm so glad to hear that you don't take things for granted! I love hearing that.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Alison,

I'm so glad you liked it.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Elena,

It really was. I don't think I knew just how much until I grew into an adult. But I am extremely grateful.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

MamaMash,

Thank you! I'm so glad I was able to tell the story.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Missy,

Thank you so much! That means so much to me.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Rach,

Thank you! Every time I go to my parents house I'm in awe of how the rocker bank just fit the cab of the car perfectly.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Elaine,

I am grateful. I truly am!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Kate,

I miss those carefree days of summer as well. It was such a simple time. Lots of fond memories were made.

Natalie @ MamaTrack said...

This is beautiful! Just lovely. And what wonderful gifts you have received.

Natalie said...

So glad that holly tree was there to save the day!

Jessica said...

This gift is way better than anything wrapped in a small package.

Kimberly said...

Oh, wow. What a great reminder that life can really change in an instant.

Optimistic Mom said...

Very thankful that you were protected. It is an absolutely wonderful gift..... Things can change just like that and we have to appreciate everyday that we are given.

angela said...

Oh, I LOVE this! It is a gift and maybe some divine intervention that everything worked out just the way it did. How scary for you guys (and I can't begin to IMAGINE what your poor parents felt when they saw the car!)

Eve @Beautiful Spit Up said...

Wow what an awesome post! Such a great reminder to not take anything, especially life, for granted.

Lauren Nicole Gifts said...

Wow!

What a beautiful post! I am so glad you came through it okay and see the wonderful positive parts of life as gifts.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Natalie@ MamaTrack,

Thank you. I truly feel blessed for everything I have in my life

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Natalie,

Me too. Although I'm just as grateful for the rockery bank that just fit the cab of the car.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Jessica,

I completely agree!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Kimberly,

It can, and it's something I will never forget!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Optimistic Mom,

Thank you. We do need to make every moment count in this life, that is for sure.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

angela,

Thank you so much.

I think when it happened I was in complete shock! I don't know how my parents handled it since both their children were in the same car.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Eve,

Thank you. I'm so glad you liked it!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Lauren Nicole Gifts,

Thank you so much. And thank you for creating this linky!

Julie said...

Oh wow wow wow...

Nothing like a dose of perspective and second chances.

I am inspired by the way you look at this situation.

With fresh insight; gratitude.

There is truly never enough of it in this world (just like love).

XO

Ado said...

I can see how grateful you are in your writing - what a gift. And what an AMAZING post! So glad for that rock bank!!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Julie,

I couldn't be more grateful. I'm still amazed that all four of us were able to walk away from it.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Ado,

I am, I really, really am. I'm glad you liked the post.

Stephanie in Suburbia said...

Wow! I have had some close calls with cars, but nothing like this! That truly is a gift. I'd have been kissing that rock garden!

Maggie S. said...

This is a really precious truth...my life is a bit of an absurd wreck right now. I guess when we stop rolling, we'll crawl out and go on. Wiser. Thank you for sharing.

Making It Work Mom said...

Wow!! What a story. That really shows you how things can change in an instant and millimeters make a difference.

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Stephanie,

That rockery bank definitely has a special place in my heart!

Hopes@Staying Afloat! said...

Maggie,

Thank you so very much for stopping by. I really appreciate it.

I'm sorry you're struggling. Just remember, it only takes a split second for things to change.

Cookie's Mom said...

I had a similar experience and it occurs to me that when these things happen people will either see them as a gift, as you did, or an excuse not to live their lives. Glad you chose the former! It's great that you have this appreciation for your life as a result.

Great post! Thanks for linking up with me for BOTB! :-)