Posted by: alwaysrkp | August 10, 2009

Driving experiences

Eleven days ago we headed out from home for our yearly trek to the beach house owned by a family friend.  We go there and C-R-A-S-H and try to catch up on a year’s worth of much needed rest.  More on that in later posts….

Getting there this year was a bit stressful.  We left early than originally planned – on a Friday night.  I had my dear MIL and C2 with me and was following my man and FIL.  After clearing the nightmarish Friday evening traffic exiting the Park (which not only includes bumper-to-bumper traffic but multiple accidents), we stopped for supper.  Then we were off again. 

About the time it got dark, a tremendous thunderstorm came.  All I could see were the tail lights of the vehicle driven by my man and by leaning forward and straining, I could see the line on the side of the interstate to be sure I was actually not driving into the concrete barriers -b/c I sure couldn’t see ANYTHING else.  Stressful driving conditions?  Yes.  But, it got worse…

A cramp in my right calf…yes, that’s right – the leg I am using to to propel the vehicle down the road and slow down frequently because I cannot see 15 feet in front of the car!  Pulling over wasn’t an option because we were in the passing lane on the interstate and oh by the way, a bunch of other people were heading to the beach too.  I almost laughed at God’s humor.  Whenever I could let off the gas, I would flex my toes a bit, but that was all I could do.  I did not tell MIL b/c she so nervous riding in the thunder, lightening and downpour of rain. Telling her I had a cramp might have been more than she could take.

Well, finally the rain slowed dramatically and finally stopped altogether…guess what else stopped?….The leg cramp.  I then DID laugh and told MIL.  When C2 decided that he could no longer contain the large amounts of liquid he had consumed at supper – we pulled over at a McD’s for potty break – and some serious leg stretching for me!

I gained a lot of respect that night.  The guys could not believe that I had managed to drive well and follow the truck (which was spraying more water onto my windshield) in that kind of rain – and with a leg cramp!

I did have to point out that I had to learn to drive in a passenger van and a station wagon up and down I-65 (squished between 18 wheelers and concrete barriers and blasting construction zones) taking my Mom 65 miles to the surgeon in Louisville.  When I did get my license, my mom had back surgery the next day and for the next several weeks I had to do all the driving.  One of those trips included following a hurling ambulance down I-65 and thru down-town Louisville to a hospital when my mom was leaking spinal fluid.  (Excepting the intense worry I was feeling for my mom, driving down I-65 at 85 and 90 miles an hour was quite exhilarating for a 16 year old!)

Another bad driving experiencewas another thunderstorm.  I was heading to Lousiville b/c R2 was there with my parents and my dad had suffered his 4th minor heart attack.  Mom told me not to come until the weekend, but the Holy Spirit pressed me to leave that day.  Driving during the night, I got in the middle of the worse thunderstorm I have EVER seen.  Almost everyone had pulled off the highway, but something in me propelled me to keep going.  I got behind an 18 wheeler and stuck to his tail.  I prayed the whole time b/c I could not see anything but that truck and I knew if he went wrong, I was going to go wrong.  We had a 1 1/2 hour detour off the interstate during that storm too – through rural, curvy roads.  I was so thankful for that truck.  I arrived at my parents at 6am.  At 7am, we got the phone call that my dad needed a 4 artery by-pass and a heart valve replacement. 

I have had a few other horrible driving experiences, but these are the three that immediately came to mind.

Often God asks us to keep going through stormy weather and stressful conditions b/c He knows it will strengthen us for something on the other side.  Sometimes he gives us rest on the other side.   Whatever the case, I could see God’s Hand in these three situations and I am grateful that He is with us – no matter what we drive through!

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