In The Blink Of An Eye


This tree…


…landed on this truck.

Everything can change. I was reminded of this last Sunday, when my husband called to tell me a tree had split in half and landed on the roof of his truck while he was driving down the street. It was such a freak thing to happen. I almost didn’t believe it, until I saw the tree, and his truck, for myself. He suffered a concussion and sprained neck from the impact, but it could have been much worse. Thank God he’s a man who likes to drive a sturdy pick-up truck. If he had a compact car, he might be dead.


What are the odds of a tree falling on your vehicle while you’re driving down the street? Maybe the same as winning the lottery? I couldn’t help but wonder about this, given the fact that on that same morning in church, I donated the dollar bill I’d been saving to buy a lottery ticket to the nuns who were visiting our parish. The bill had been stuffed in my purse for weeks. I was waiting for that perfect, intuitive moment to speak to me, “Today is the day to purchase the winning lottery ticket at this obscure store you never frequent.”

After listening to the nun’s plea, I decided the hell with it, like I’m really going to win the lottery with this dollar bill or, like, ever. The money would be better spent on the nuns’ cause. (Lest you think I’m a cheapskate, I’d already made a donation during mass when the basket came through; the dollar was the only cash I had left.)

Then later that day, a tree lands on my husband’s truck. That day, my husband says to me, half-joking, “You almost just came into half a million dollars.” He was referring to the $500,000 life insurance policy we have on him. Not that I wouldn’t love half a million dollars, mind you, but not at the expense of his life. I told him this, and hoped he believed me.

What would our lives be without this husband and father? This man who drives me absolutely batty with his insane, surprise purchases, who hops from job to job, whose antics cause me to stay up nights worrying? I’ll tell you what it would be – miserable. This is what I thought as I drove to meet him an hour away at the hospital. My boys would be fatherless, I would be husbandless, and our worlds would totally, absolutely suck.  Because in spite of the stress he causes,  he counteracts it with so much good.

As my wise grandmother used to say when anyone in the family was complaining of marital woes and contemplating divorce (and, who knows, maybe fantasizing about their spouse passing away in a freak accident and collecting the insurance money): you are merely trading one set of problems for another.

This is what I was reminded of thanks to this freak act of nature. Or maybe it was really a wake up call from God.

19 thoughts on “In The Blink Of An Eye

  1. That must have been so scary, for all of you!! I’m glad he is basically okay, and hope that the concussion fades away quickly.
    But you are so right in how quickly things can change, and in the face of those kinds of changes, we see so clearly what is truly important to us. Money is a great thing to have, but it’s the people in our lives who are absolutely necessary. I’m thinking that dollar was well-spent….
    Take care, Kim!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Ann. I guess sometimes these things can be wake up calls or blessings in disguise. My husband told me there was a young girl in a tiny car driving behind him and that if the tree had hit her, the car would have been completely crushed, and probably her, too (he is an auto body technician/painter so he knows what he’s talking about). So he’s actually glad it hit him and not her.

      Liked by 1 person

    • That’s so true, Alan. We can’t live our lives worrying about it, but these types of freak things make you take stock of the fact that all we have is right now, this day, this moment. We need to make the best of it.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Sometimes we don’t realize the reality of a situation until we’re faced with it or scared into it. Thank God he was not hurt worse. It’s times like these when we realize how much we have and much we could have lost. I pray he heals quickly.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think you spent that money well Kim, perhaps someone upstairs was looking out for him. And you’re right, everything can change so quickly, we often forget, though I must admit I do think of it more as I’ve got older, how vulnerable we are. Very scary for him … and you. Thank God he was mostly okay.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. He IS actually very very lucky. When I was a paramedic in NH, this very thing DID happen to someone. A tree fell on their truck and did kill them. Sooo, you are totally lucky that nothing more happened. When these freak things happen, it is some sort of sign, or wake up call to sit up and remember all the things we need to be grateful that we have. Those moments that ‘almost’ happened. There are so many folks they happen to…when they aren’t us, we need to thank our lucky stars, and decide that is the day to be better people all the way around. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can’t imagine all the sad and horrific things you saw as a paramedic. Such an important job. Thank you! As to wake up calls, I originally thought the wake up call was for him to take better care of himself. He was on his way to McDonalds and it was the 3rd day in row he was eating fast food! I have been on him to not eat that crap and told him it was a sign that he shouldn’t have been going there. Then when I was driving to the hospital I got my wake up call , which I shared in my post.

      Liked by 1 person

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