Saturday, December 01, 2007

I am a terrible, terrible person.

As if my last little story had not already swayed you to that reality, this story will show you how truly terrible I am.

Rushing, rushing, rushing around. That is how every day begins in my house. And such was the case yesterday morning too - even though it was a Saturday. So after the eating of the breakfast and the taking of a jog and the showering and the dressing and the getting the two older children ready to go shopping, I headed out the door. Only to return two hours later in a rush because child two had to sing in a concert that afternoon. Poetroad rushed out the door with her, and I gathered together the stuff we needed for a project we were working on at the church later that day.

So I rushed out the door, hastily plopped the two younger kids in their car seats, buckled them in - all the while hearing sirens in the distance getting louder and louder as if they were nearing our street.

In the back of my mind, I knew instinctively (as any idiot would when she hears sirens drawing nigh) that something wasn't quite right. Then I saw my neighbor, "Saul", in his front yard sobbing and holding a telephone.

"Saul, what's wrong? Is everything okay?" I asked as I rushed over to him.

"It's Tia! It's Tia. [Saul and Gwen's four year old daughter, their only child] She cut her finger off."

She cut her finger off! Not "cut her finger." Cut it OFF!

I could tell that Saul was in shock. His face was panic stricken. I put my arm around his shoulder and asked, "Is it on ice?"


"It will be okay, Saul. They reattach fingers all the time. They'll take care of Tia."

I saw the officer cautiously pull onto our street as if he were looking for the correct house. I waved him down and introduced Saul to the officer. The officer took over my job with Saul. Then the fire truck drove up. It blocked my entire driveway.

Knowing that our daughter number two was now beginning her concert - and that Poetroad had asked me to bring some equipment to the concert which led me to believe that he needed it for the concert - I felt an urgency to get to my destination. I told the officer that I couldn't stay. He said that they would take it from there.

Then I looked at the fire engine blocking my driveway - and the three paramedic/firefighters piling out of the engine in a rush to help little Tia. I was thinking, "Did you have to block my driveway?" but I said, again, "I'm sorry, but I need to leave." The firefighters looked at me as if trying to figure out who I was and what I wanted, but they quickly ignored me and went on to do their job.

Here is the thing. Here is what makes me so terrible: I actually - for more than a split second - wanted one of the three firefighters to stop what he was doing, go back, and move the truck.

Thankfully, the officer, not sensing my selfishness, said in his gentle Texan drawl, "That's alright Miss. You go right along. We'll take it from here."

So I waved and got into my car. I felt like an idiot. Here this little girl could be dying for all I know. Loosing quarts of blood. I had no idea how bad the injury was, and all I could think about was where I needed to be and who was in my way.

God help me!

The irony is that this is the very "suburban" attitude we (Poetroad and I - and others) are fighting to change in our homes and churches and neighborhoods and in America and in the world. Self-centeredness rots. Change my attitude, Holy Spirit.

It was a great reminder that I cannot judge others. Just when I think I've got this Christ thing figured out, the ugly truth of my nature is revealed. I am still just a seeker.

I sat in my car wondering how I would exit graciously. Then I remembered that I drive a big rig and, in Texas, would have no problem driving across my lawn. So I did. It was a tight squeeze that I had to negotiate when driving between the firetruck and the neighbor's truck parked across the street, but I managed to skillfully squeeze through without leaving a scratch on any vehicle.

Still, I felt guilty the moment I left. If I had stayed, could I have made a difference? Gwen is a nurse, so I'm sure she had everything under control with Tia. I'm not sure that I could have done anything with my two little ones there either. Who knows what kind of god awful condition Tia was in, and she is a buddy of my two little ones. I couldn't have exposed them to that.

Today I'll go check on my neighbors. I'll do whatever I can to help them through the post-trauma. What I'm sure they'll need is encouragement and prayers (which is all I know to give in a situation like this one).


Beth said...

You are NOT a terrible person.

bluesugarpoet said...

Thank you, Beth (but let's not discuss my few - but random temper