To my readers: I apologize for the “radio silence.” With that said, we are going to dive right on into continuing with the story.
We left off in the story with the traffic court case ending. The judge found the other driver guilty. This was a huge a victory! With that finished, the next part was going to be fun. We had to prepare the case for reimbursement on the damages done that the other company not only refused to recognize, but also to come after me personally.
One part that made this difficult was my inability to remember the accident. Even as I continue to share this story, a portion of it is from other people’s point of view. Also while the legal process continued my personal struggles continued. Remember, I had my life planned out for the next 15-20 years; and, in less then 3 seconds, a nuclear bomb went off in my life. The aftershocks affected my loved ones, and my acceptance of my situation was lacking to say the least. Because of this, therapy was more difficult then it needed to be. Plus within my circle, the number of friends became fewer due to the change in me, which I really didn’t recognize or understand. The cherry on the top the struggles my parents had in understanding TBI. If this should happen to sound similar to struggles you’ve had my prayers go out to you.
With any court case you need a decent team! That we had. Once the traffic portion was completed, they went for a strategic maneuver that made our case. Through some legal magic they moved the case from Virginia to West Virginia. This is where we went on our first trip to get the depositions done. These to are so fun (sarcasm). The one funny part of this trip was that I introduced my mom the Veggie Tales’ “Cheeburger” song. My poor mom! She is certainly deserving of some rewards in heaven.
While staying there, there was a restaurant that had an arcade and pool tables. I remember sitting down with my mom and one of our attorneys. After we had ordered food, I wanted to play pool while we waited. The attorney said, ”I’m sorry but you can’t do that, the other attorneys are here and if they see you playing pool that will be used against you!” I couldn’t believe it. Due to anger being a prevalent emotion after TBI, I stormed back to the hotel room without even eating.
Many years later I found out that was the moment our defense team understood that what we’d testified to was true, and as difficult as it is to say even today I was damaged!
The next day was depositions I remember sitting there and not understanding the importance of the proceedings. So, mom went and did really well. I went next and answered questions the only thing I remember is the fact that the other attorneys kept asking the same questions in different ways. Even then I was kinda laughing to myself because it seemed crazy, I was telling the truth no matter how you ask me your going to get the same answer!
That brings me to where this will be a longer read then normal, but I hope you hang in there to finish it out.
My parents have often been asked, “how’d you do it” or “how can you believe in God”, even “how you’d keep it together?” The truth is there were times of tears, anger, loneliness, helplessness, and depression. Through it all we need to remember God’s Word is true! God’s promises are true! His love is unconditional even when times are hard. I will allow my dad to take from here….
Does any one know where the love of God goes
when the waves turn the minutes to hours?
Song, “Wreck of the Edmond Fitzgerald”
In this famous song from Gordon Lightfoot he alludes to the suffering of man in a time of crisis. Time can seemingly stand still for those going through a trial. For those who suffer from traumatic brain injury (as well as those around them), time never stops, the suffering is continual.
Since 1998 when our son had his accident, I have been repeatedly asked the question: “how do you deal with this?” Well, sometimes just fine, other times not so fine. As in all things in life there are ups and downs, there are, however principles I find in God’s word that I could not go on without.
It is those principles that I would like to examine. My hope is that they would help anyone who is facing a trial, not just TBI. This space is too small to cover it all at once, so this will be a first installment. If you find it beneficial, stay tuned for updates on this topic.
The first step is faith in the fact that whatever God does or allows is all right. Too many times we make statements about God that make sense to us but are not founded in God’s word. One such comment is: “If there really is a God he would not (or would) allow……” The person who thinks or makes this statement has not placed his full trust in God. They are using the logical but flawed thought process that assumes God must think the way they do. God, Himself addresses this in Isaiah 55:8 where he says; “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.” From the start, God lets mankind know that His abilities and thought patters are nothing like mans. Man cannot think like God for many reasons. Two reasons are: we have a sin nature that affects our judgment and our mental capabilities are far weaker than the God that created us.
A close, but not perfect example is that of a child and parent. The parent will take an injured or sick child to the doctor or hospital. If a treatment is required that would cause immediate pain such as a shot or moving a broken bone into place, the initial reaction of the child (and adults sometimes!) is to resist and see the treatment as a problem. The parent knows, however, that such temporary discomfort is needed to bring about a greater healing. A young child may not have this understanding. So we, as children of God endure suffering that we see no reason for and seems to last forever.
Evan if our suffering lasts a lifetime, James observed in James 4:14 “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” This life can seem far too long for us to endure but compared to eternity it is just a brief time. God is not bound by time. The Bible explains this in II Peter 3:8.9 where it tells us that to God a day is a thousand years and a thousand years are as a day.
Let me end this section by saying this: We may never know the WHY of suffering. If we can rule out a cause of sin in or lives or a poor decision on our part then God has allowed it for His glory and His reasons. It will not last forever and God will let us know why in His good time.
Stay tuned and we will examine how this baseline of faith helped real people deal with suffering. I guarantee that unless you have this faith as your bedrock, you will crumble when “the waves turn the minutes to hours.”