My son and I were making dinner in the kitchen a few nights ago when I got the call that no parent ever wants to receive: My daughter had been in a car accident on the highway during evening rush hour.
An accident instantly halts all the world’s noise.
Everything else falls away with crystallizing focus to the singular, life-and-death question: Is she okay?
And thankfully, joyfully, gratefully, my Gracie is fine. She didn’t get hurt at all, and the driver of the truck she hit was okay, too.
Gracie’s little green Toyota Corolla that motored her so reliably through Denver city streets and back and forth to college, however, is totaled.
So. Now we are dealing with insurance deductibles and rental cars and claims and paperwork and unplanned expenses at Christmas time. But you know what? It doesn’t matter. And if everything on my holiday To Do list doesn’t get done or bought this year, it doesn’t matter.
We have lost two loved ones to car accidents, and I am acutely aware of how vulnerable we are and how easily a few more inches, a couple of seconds, a different angle, or a little more velocity can, in an instant, bring forth an outcome too painful to imagine.
I wish it didn’t take an accident to remind me of the truth I know, but sometimes I forget.
Every day we have together is a gift.
In these coming days filled with holiday preparations and busy-ness, I wish for you the gift of simple, happy moments with your loved ones.