You know how sometimes it seems like the world is going to shit? 2012 certainly provided ample reminders of just how shitty shit can be. And as much as I wanted to blame the stupid Mayans, I found myself angry with God instead. An exhaustive list of the things that kept me in my pissy pants isn’t necessary, nor is it happy, and it would probably result in more curse words, so just trust me when I say that my faith had indeed been tested.
I begged and prayed for a sign, something to tell me we’re not spiraling out of control. Nothin‘. I told myself I was going to flip on the radio and find meaning in whatever song was playing. Nope. I was going to really, really pay attention in church and acknowledge a hidden message intended just for me. Nada.
After the most recent chapter in WTF is Happening?!, my husband Zach found himself driving to a funeral home to pay his respects to an eleventh grade girl who, up until three days prior, was in his Statistics class. She was killed in a sled riding accident. SLED RIDING, you guys. She wasn’t snorting coke or somewhere she wasn’t supposed to be. She didn’t lie to her parents and pretend she was going sled riding only to sneak off to a dimly lit basement to do body shots off of senior boys. SLED. RIDING. Innocent, harmless fun, the kind that seems elusive to so many today.
That was Zach’s breaking point. The following is his story, but he gave me permission to write about it:
I turned out of our neighborhood, the whole time thinking, “What kind of God allows something like this to happen?! This girl was BRIGHT. She kept a prayer book! She was an athlete. She doesn’t deserve this. Her poor family. Why would God take her?!” I was focused on my thoughts, but couldn’t help noticing how SLOWLY the car in front of me was going. Then I was angry at God and at the damn car!! COME ON!!!
While everyone else in the world is making New Year’s Eve plans, these parents are planning to bury their daughter. I had her older brother in class a few years ago. She has a twin sister. Such a nice family. Kids aren’t even safe sled riding any more?! So unfair. WHAT IS THIS FREAKING CAR DOING???????? My blood is boiling!
The car and I finally get to the intersection where I hope to go our separate ways. It’s c r a w l i n g to the stop sign, as though mocking me. When it finally gets there, it stops. And sits. And sits some more. And does. not. move. I’m ready to lose my mind! Hand poised over my horn, and that’s when I see it. Staring me in the face…
The second I read it, the car took off. It was my turn to just sit there. Did that really just happen? A literal sign? Okay. I get it. I hear You.
When Zach told me this story, I admit I was touched and a little miffed: where was MY sign?! I had been asking for one for months, not Zach! Then I stopped the prolonged pity party I had inadvertently thrown myself. I unzipped my pissy pants and kicked them to the back corner of my closet. I realized my husband was my sign; God may have spoken to Zach, but I got the message loud and clear.