All the way to the scene of the accident I prayed. I prayed that God would protect my boys. That He would help me to stay calm and to know what to do. I prayed that He would help me understand the purpose and reason for this. I didn’t have to see the car or my kids to know it was bad. When you are told that they are all four pinned in the vehicle, you know that it’s bad. So all I could do is pray for what was to come.
When we first arrived to the scene, I ran as fast as I could to get to the vehicle. Time slows down. Time speeds up. There is no way to explain it so that the human brain can understand. You have a thousands thoughts in your head, all at one time. Your senses become hyper focused. I took in the scene in a simple moment of time. I couldn’t get close to my kids. I knew that to do so would be a distraction to the paramedics trying to rescue them from the vehicle. I felt such a helplessness that I had never even imagined could exist. I knew we needed prayers, and the fastest way to get the word out? Social media. I knew some would think that I was insane for taking the time to take a picture to post on Facebook. The truth is, time was all I had. I posted a picture of the scene with a caption that read, “Please pray hard.” The crazy part is…. I hated the way that sounded in that moment but my mind couldn’t come up with anything better. Grammar went flying out the window and my mind could only think in small bursts.
Imagine looking at vehicle with your kids screaming inside of it, begging for help, and being unable to do a single thing. You can’t hold their hand, comfort them, or tell them it will be okay. Because you honestly don’t know. Imagine trying to evaluate the damage to the vehicle and trying to prepare yourself for which of them might not make it. I remember thinking that Jacob would probably be the one most critical because he was on the passenger side in the front. I saw Jackson, and since there was no blood and his eyes were open, I was grateful because I thought he would be okay. I was the most afraid for Jackson on the way to the scene because he is so small. He is the baby of the family. I knew there was the possibility of internal injuries, but my mind refused to process anything except what I could visually see right then. I started living second to second and in the “now” on the side of that road and from that moment forward.
Josh was extracted first. 1 down, 3 to go. “Hurry!” is all I could think over and over in my head. “Get them in the helicopters. What is taking so long?!” I noticed a woman by the other vehicle with her arms outstretched towards the car my boys were in. That is where I needed to be. By someone who had enough sense to be praying. I didn’t know her. It didn’t matter. I went close to where she was and kneeled in the grass and prayed. It was there, with my knees pressed into the grass and dirt, that I received an overwhelming peace. “I have this” God whispered to me. “There is a purpose and a plan for this.” I knew that the road would be long and my faith would be tested over and over, but I never lost that peace. In the midst of surgeries yet to come, days when I wasn’t sure which one of my babies might die, I always knew that God had a plan. As a mother, we seem to think that we are in control. If our children succeed, it is our doing. If they fail, their failures are ours too. If they are smart, well behaved, and respectful – we think we too have accomplished this. It is our duty when the nurses hand us this swaddled newborn at the hospital to take them home and keep them alive and safe. The truth is, the only one in control is God. My children are His children. He loves them more than even I could ever imagine. His plan for their lives supersedes mine.
One by one they were extracted from the car. I heard Alex only scream one time, “Please get my brothers out of this car.” My heart broke for him because in that moment because I realized the emotional battle he would have to face. To this day I am amazed at the instinct to protect and nurture this son of mine had. His first and only thought was for his brothers. He wasn’t initially trapped in the car. He shifted his broken leg and broke it worse trying to reach his brothers in the back seat to remove debris that was on top of them. He comforted his 12 year old brother by continuing to talk with him and patting him with his shattered arm. Not until all of his brothers were out of the vehicle did he finally allow himself to scream from the pain he was in. His first instinct when they crashed was to pray to God. He prayed for God to remove their pain, and He did. Alex later told us everyone in the car became pain free and peace settled around them. I cannot begin to express how proud I am of him. I later learned also that as the car was hydroplaning God spoke to him and told him not to be afraid, that they all would live.
Alex was the last to be extracted from the car. A paramedic walked up to me and told me to run. Literally. He said that what they were fixing to do would cause Alex to scream worse than even I could ever imagine. If it were him and his child, he would want someone to warn him. I did the only thing I could do…. I ran.