When You Answer the Call Every Parent Hopes They Don’t Get

by | Nov 19, 2012 | Uncategorized

Jolted awake by the vibration of my phone on the nightstand, I grab it off the charger, see that it’s Murielle calling. I assume she is letting me know she’s on her way home from the movie. Then I notice the time. Its 12:40 am, later than I thought. When I answer, she screams through a garbled cacophony, “Mommy, I am so sorry,” over and over and over again. That’s when I wake up from the dream I thought I was having, and join her nightmare.

I hold the phone away from my ear and look at it. I can’t understand her, like I’m walking through pudding in thick fog. Until the voice of a stranger pours cold water over all my senses and wakes me up.

She tells me she is a nurse, staying with my daughter until emergency crews arrive. That Murielle was just hit by an 18-wheeler near the grocery store, how she is lucky to be alive. I spring out of bed, throw off my pajamas, push legs and arms into clothes lying over the bathroom stool, will my mind to think through details, walk out of the house holding the phone and car keys, and leave my son behind to sleep.

Streets lay blanketed by stillness, dark and vacant. As I pull onto the highway, blue flashing lights in the distance bounce off pine skyscraper soldiers standing at attention. I gasp for breath. Dial H awake from slumber in a Denver hotel room.

As I approach, lights dance between an ambulance, fire truck and police cars blinding my vision. When I circle around to park, I see it, the mangled mess of metal that was once the shiny hood of her car. Fragments of the engine strewn in a million tiny pieces over the road for yards. And it’s hard to run fast through pudding.

She sits in the driver seat, black boots resting on pavement. An EMT crouches in front of her, strapping a brace around her neck and over her sweater printed swans. She tilts her watery eyes toward me, and says it again, “I’m so sorry Mommy.”

I clutch her shoulder, tell her not to be sorry because she is alive and that is all that matters. And when I ask them what happened, I watch a muted movie scrolling stilled frames of frenzy. All I hear is “It’s a miracle she is alive.”

She narrowly escapes falling through the hole in the veil between heaven and earth and I find myself hanging on to the broad arm of a fireman, steadying my uncontrollable trembling. When I ask him what happened he says, “It doesn’t matter. One more inch and this would be a different scenario. You don’t want to go there, all you need to know is she is a miracle.”

As the ambulance pulls away, I crawl back inside the car, rest my forehead on the steering wheel, shaking like a washing machine off balance, wonder who I can call. Who do you call at 1:30 in the morning when you are alone in the middle of trauma? After I can’t reach a friend, I take a deep breath and call on God. Because with Him I can do all things. And H, he talks me through to peace on the hour drive to the hospital.

I find her alone in a sterile room, strapped to a board on a table, head haloed by orange plastic, and arms lying up at her sides with needles sticking out in the bends. When she sees me standing over her, she says it again teary, that she is sorry.

She is sorry that she woke me up. That she wrecked the car we sacrificed to buy when someone totaled the first one. Sorry about my having to be up all night, to deal with all of this alone. Sorry that she wasn’t more cautious, that she made a mistake, that her brother was alone, that she might have to miss school because people are counting on her.

I watch the daughter I bore sixteen years ago love her neighbor as herself. And I have seen the face of God’s compassion. When I think I need to know why, find answers to life’s mysteries, I will remember that to have breath is a miracle. And that’s all that matters.

She walked to the car, crawled in her bed, and fell asleep. We don’t know who that nurse was but we do know God saved her life and for that, we are sobered thankful.

Thank you so very much for your prayers over the past few days. They have buoyed us and we are grateful for each one of you. I know this post is longer than my usual. I had to write it out for me this time. But my prayer is that it will be for you too. We’re on this pilgrimage together, yes?

Linking with Ann today in thanks for my daughter’s life.

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  1. Celeste Allyn

    Hi Shelly,
    You know I am a new mom. My husband has been away for work in the UK…one more week to go. There have been days when I wonder, what am I doing, am I doing this right?? I am also a miracle having survived an accident where my car was totalled. I read ÿour words, know the emotions and you remind me just what a mom is..thanks…again.

  2. Sylvia R

    Wow. You have been going through it! Praise to God for this miracle! And prayers for your daughter, and you.

  3. Sharon O

    I am crying. I am seeing the full scene and feeling your panic. So glad … SO GLAD you are fine and even more glad she is alive and fine. Watch her closely for signs of back and neck injury, and keep praying… thank the angels who worked over time to protect her whoever they might have been.

  4. hisfirefly

    Peace and more peace to fall upon you, blanket you, cushion you all as the bumps continue to rise in memories, in thoughts of what might have been. His truth and comfort and answers to flood her when she asks, and she WILL ask, “Why and what did you save me for?” for she will feel chosen and set apart.

    Prayers will continue…

  5. Holly

    This post stirred up so much in me…gratefulness for timing, complete wonder at the people placed in your daughter’s path, and then the big question of how is it that this story could have ended so differently and why did it, instead, end this way? Accidents happen, all of the time, to good people and bad people and old people and young people and they are just that–accidents. But it seems to me that it would be impossible to live through this scenario and not feel the keen weight of God’s hand, above and below, in and around. Praying with you and your family, Shelly, as you recover from the trauma, shock and intensity of this week and thanking God for the gift of life.

  6. lynndmorrissey

    Oh my heavens, Shelly!!! Muriel was a miracle at birth, she is a miracle now, and each and every breath she breathes is God’s miracle of life given back to her……and you and H and your family. And that nurse was a miracle, too. It’s all a miracle. My prayer-partners and I will be [raying for her recovery and rejoicing with you in all this togetherness. I’m so happy for you that Muriel is safe at home, safe in your heat.

  7. Tammie

    Love and Prayers!

  8. elizabethfstewart

    Oh my goodness, tangling with an 18 wheeler! Angels were watching over her.

  9. Valerie

    I cried reading your post because I can so relate to your post. I wish I could write as eloquently as you do. I understand all the emotions and feelings that you have gone through and will continue to work through with time. God has blessed you with an amazing gift and kept her safe. Praise God. I know in my family Drew’s accident bonded us together in a way I never thought possible. I saw God work in all of our hearts. I will be praying for Murielle, you, H, and Harrison as you go through this together.

  10. altarofheaven

    I had no idea Shelly–I’ve been behind in my readings! I am praying now. For you, and your family…and the truck driver.

    I rejoice with you God spared Muriel…so thankful that “the fragrance of God” will continue to flow out from her, by His grace and mercy! “The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with his love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17 Hugs and LOVE to you!

    I understand about those type of phone calls, it will be two years this November for our family:

  11. Denise J. Hughes

    Oh, I’m so glad she’s okay. So so glad.

  12. tara pohlkotte

    oh, Shelly. so.so. grateful that all is well and that everyone is safe. these emotions, these whispers from the cracks of life – stir so much up. I hope she can rest on the promise of you caring more about her being ok than of one mistake she’s made. we all make them. so glad that this one ended with her in your arms.

  13. Eileen

    So thankful your daughter is okay. You took me back to when I was 16 and totaled my parent’s brand new car. I called my Dad and just kept apologizing. I feared he was going to be angry but when he got to the scene all he did was hug me. When the car was towed to the body shop and they saw the mangled mess the mechanic asked “Wow, did someone die in this?”

    Praising and thanking God with you.

  14. Sandra Heska King

    Gasping for breath. You know I get this.

  15. Jillie

    Giving Thanks with you Shelly…and praying for Murielle and all of you.

  16. Rebecca

    Dear Shelly – This is an amazing miracle and we are so thankful that Murielle is physically okay. I know this is hard on her emotionally and she will need assurance often. Having gone thru a similar experience with my daughter when she was in high school, I can relate with what you wrote. Again and again I pray for HIS peace to saturate Murielle and you and your family. Hold her close often and cherish each moment with her.

  17. Gayle

    Giving thanks along with you. Life is so fragile, how often we forget that. And then someone we know looses a child, or a tragedy almost happens and we hold on tight.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I was reminded of that today when someone told me it didn’t turn out that way for them. And I want to be sensitive to those who have lost loved ones in accidents. That God is still faithful, even when His will doesn’t look like what we hoped.

  18. Annie Danielson

    Teary and thankful with you- hope you get some deep rest XO

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We have rested well Annie and now we are gearing up for Thanksgiving and company. But I have to say I’m giving up on the Martha Stewart holiday and just not worrying about things that don’t matter.

  19. Sherri

    *crying* can’t imagine it being my daughter. So grateful Murielle is alright, and I think it has a little, or a lot, to do with yours and H’s faithfulness.

  20. Lori

    So thankful she’s OK, Shelly. This post had me in tears. I can only imagine the terror and the joy of knowing she’ll be OK.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I don’t think I realized the gravity of it all until I pulled around and saw the engine mutilated. I felt so helpless and so needful of my Saviour in that moment.

  21. Boo Peace

    Oh my!!!!!! Shelly, I’m so sorry….so thankful….shocked….please give Murielle a bug hug for me!! Wow!!!! Praying for Peace for all of you! Much love

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Me too Boo, shocked is a good word for it. It’s been a sobering time. I’ll send your love along.

  22. Barbie

    I am in tears. I am so thankful your daughter is okay. I continue to pray for you all!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thankful for you Barbie and for your prayers.

  23. Susan McIntyre

    When the phone jolts you out of sleep you know nothing good is coming. Trying to clear your head before you answer is the first challenge. Hoping that the first voice you hear is a familiar one rather than the voice of a stranger is the second. You never knew you could move so fast or dress so quickly. God drives the car with you because you will realize later that you don’t know how you got where you needed to go. Then the angels that God sends you take over, just like the day that H drove me to the hospital 90 miles away when we couldn’t airlift my husband to the Heart Center in Greenville when he had his heart attack and then leaned over the desk insisting that I see my husband when we got there. H was my clear head when I was on the verge of losing mine. That day is still surreal to me, but I remember the sanity that rose up amongst the insanity of the situation and the prayers that surrounded us at that bedside and then three weeks later at the sudden deathbed of my mother. God, please grant me the strength to be your angel when others need your physical as well as your spiritual touch. God, grant you the wisdom to recognize the angels you send to us.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      So glad H was there in the midst of that Susan. He is indeed such a level headed fellow in times of stress. He was on the phone with me the entire time, thinking through details I was oblivious to.

  24. Christina

    Oh Shelly, words fail me. Life is so precious and I’m so thankful that her life was spared. What a horrible and frightening thing that we all fear and dread. May God continue to give your family comfort and peace. There is much to be thankful this Thanksgiving. Hugs to you!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yep, I had so much fear about her driving. Not because I don’t trust her but because it only takes a few seconds making a wrong decision for your life to radically shift. But He’s shown himself to us in such a dramatic way through this that I’m actually feeling more certain that she needs to drive again.

  25. richelle @ "our wright"-ing pad

    how terrifying… thankful for this miracle and for God’s sustaining through those shaky, scary moments. thank you for sharing your story.

  26. Fran Keown

    Shelley, I am so sorry to learn of Murielle’s accident. I am so very glad to learn she was not hurt. Spoke with sister Paula this morning with regard to the accident details. Not sure if you knew that Bob and I were involved in a similar accident in 1996. So glad to hear that Murielle was driving an old Mercedes, they are one tough automobile. The only thing saving us in our accident (besides the good Lord) was the fact we were in a new F150, 1st year of redesign to handle hard front impacts. We hit a drug dealer at 60MPH impact. Thank God each day for GRACE and MERCY and wisdom. Tell Murielle she may be sore, but it will get better. Even though my skull was cracked open to the skull because I hit the grab handle they had relocated on the right side of windowshield, we neither had a broken bone. God is amazing. Must have many plans for Murielle in the future. Love, Aunt Fran


    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m sure He has big plans for her life Fran. It was a Volvo actually and we are grateful for a car that does what it is supposed to do in an accident. Thanks for being here.

  27. kd sullivan

    I am praying for you friend…and wrapping arms of love around you in the spirit. Your strength is beautiful.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I feel the love Kim. Thanks for all your support and prayers, I appreciate them more than you know.

  28. Laura

    You and your family are in my prayers. Much to be thankful for – may God hold you all close.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you Laura, that means a lot to me. Yes, we will approach this holiday different than all the rest for sure. So glad you are here with us in spirit.

  29. Nancy Ruegg

    A heart-stopping, soul-moving story. Thank you for plowing through the pudding to share it. No doubt it will minister to many.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I hope so Nancy, that’s my prayer anyway.

  30. simplystriving

    So very grateful all that was wrecked was metal. Yet the impression of life will remain in her heart always. I was her age when the impression was left on mine…

    Hugs to all of you and praise to Him…from whom all blessings flow!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m praying this will be a marker in her life too Nikki.. That she will look back on this time in her life and remember how much God loves her, even through a traumatic and disappointing circumstance.

  31. ajbsandme

    So glad God kept her safe. Blessings of peaceful hearts and recovery are being prayed for all of you!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I imagine his big hand holding her steady as she spun around from the impact. I’m so thankful He was there protecting her. Thank you for visiting.

  32. Jennifer@GDWJ

    Oh Shelly. I am so sorry. Shaking with you, reading this one. And thanking God that she’s OK. She is OK, right? How is she feeling?

    • Redemption's Beauty

      She is doing remarkably well. She even felt a bit strange when she came home from youth group last night and didn’t feel sore. Almost like something was wrong. It’s all the prayer. But you already know that.

  33. thelongawaitedhome

    I got the call. It wasn’t my daughter, but my niece Ashley, my sister’s 16 year old daughter. Her boyfriend was driving, and they had been drinking. They were both killed. Through this horrible situation God’s grace came shining through. I was the only adult in my family who knew the Lord. They asked me to plan the funeral. When Ashley was a child, she asked Jesus into her heart after going to church with me. I gave her a Bible she treasured with John 3:16 highlighted – her favorite verse. I contacted a Pastor at a Bible Church and this is where we had the funeral service. Over a hundred high school students along with my family heard the Gospel message for probably the first time. My sister (Ashley’s mom) was a heroin addict. She went through a year of hopelessness, then, when she was ready to end her life, she contacted the Pastor who spoke at Ashley’s funeral. He and his wife reached out to my sister. God used all these things to save my sister. It is 7 years now and she is clean and living for the Lord. An inspiring story in the midst of such a tragedy.
    So thankful your daughter is alive, praising God with you!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Wow, what an amazing story of God’s love for your sister. It seems in every difficulty and pain, redemption is waiting around the corner. We just have to have eyes to see it. Thank you for sharing this story, I’m sure it will bless others who stop by.

  34. Danise Jurado

    So very blessed that she is ok… God is so faithful! Thank you Jesus! Blessings to you all!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yes, blessed. Thanks for being here Danise.

  35. Nancy Franson (@nancyfranson)

    Shaking with you as I read this. Even though I have been praying for you both, and giving abundant thanks, over the past few days, walking through these details in my mama’s heart has just got me gasping for breath.That veil between heaven and earth–so very thin.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It has been quite sobering for me too Nancy. And in an odd way, I want to hold on to a fragment of the tremble. It’s put me right where I need to be with broad perspective and acute visibility.

  36. Emma

    Shelly, tears flowed as I read your post, am praying for you & your family at this time, giving thanks especially for Murielle. How great a protector is our God.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks for your prayers Emma, we are so grateful for all those who are praying and quite aware that it is the prayers of the people that are carrying her through this with such grace and courage.

  37. wynnegraceappears

    Shelly, did you add this stirring picture later. I am rattled to the core and amazed at our faithful God. Oh seeing that adds to the tremendous nature of the miracle in this and His faithfulness. Oh praising Him for his beautiful timing and protection. What a Thanksgiving you will have. Oh the grateful spirits around your table. Loving you and rejoicing with you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I did Elizabeth, just added it. I posted it on Facebook and the response led me to believe it led people even closer to the feet of Jesus, to His amazing grace over it all. So I thought I should share it with readers too.

      • wynnegraceappears

        So rattled by His grace, provision and astounding love. Happiest Thanksgiving to your family. I know the tone of celebration will be at an all time fevered pitch.

  38. Tanya Marlow

    Oh boy. You told this so vividly, I felt like I was there right with you. So, so thankful that Murielle was okay – but man, the shock. I would still be reeling. Praying that you all would know God’s loving arms around you. Much love x

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I might be writing something different now for the guest post Tanya!

  39. Megan Willome (@meganwillome)

    I’ve been waiting for this, for the story. That fireman–that’s the voice of God.

    As the mother of my own 16-year-old driver, this touches me deeply. Murielle is well-loved and so are you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Megan, I had to close my eyes and breathe deeply to hear him. He was the voice of love and kindness in the midst of a fog. Sounds like God to me.

  40. laura

    Shelly. This just slays me. Oh, thank God for one thin inch! Thank God your girl is sake. Giving extra thanks this week, for you and yours, my friend.

  41. amiramelody

    wow! amazing story!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you for taking the time to read it and comment. I appreciate it.

      • amiramelody

        no problem 🙂

  42. mizzchiff

    Wow!!! God bless you and your children. That was nothing less than a miracle!!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I agree, nothing less. And we are so very thankful for miracles.

  43. mikafry

    So sorry to hear about this horrific accident. My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you, I’ am grateful that grace has met with us in the midst of what could’ve been an even greater tragedy. Metal can be replaced, but human life cannot.

  44. thepavilionaires

    On September 1, 2011, we got a call from our oldest daughter Adrienne saying her younger sister Danielle 29, was being transported to an emergency in Sparks, Nv. She had gone to an event called “Burning Man” out in the desert with a group of about 15 friends. We spoke to her briefly as they intubated her at the ER. When she arrived at the ER her BP was 43/15! She had a heart attack followed by cascading multiple organ failure. By the next morning we were told that she needed liver and kidney transplants… but had been denied at all the transplant centers in the US. She is a hard-working college graduate with a job with great insurance and yet there she was… given 1,000 to one chances of survival! We scheduled someone to be in the critical care unit with her 24/7….she was in a coma for 12 days and we were told the entire time that she was going to die! Her family did not believe that and we prayed non-stop…the 23rd psalm is the most wonderful mantra to calm one’s soul if said verrrrry slowwwwly!!!!! I did not let myself cry or fret or think “what if..” I knew that if that came to pass, I would have the rest of my life to weep. I did not let anyone speak of transplant or death in the room with her and I would sit by her and pray out loud and tell her she was in the arms of Jesus and would describe in great detail the safety, strength and protection that He provides for us all.
    Danielle is now completely well!! She went back to work by the new year and her doctors actually wept when she was discharged from the hospital. There is NO power or authority greater than that of our Lord!
    Aloha, Gwendolyn Nelson

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh my goodness, what a captivating and beautiful story of God’s redemption and the power of prayer. I am so thankful you have shared this with me. What an inspiration!

  45. Ajay Kaul

    Thank God she survived! But commendation to you as well for capturing the ethos of this event so well. I was in a trance reading through this. My prayers are with you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yes, thanking Him with you. I’m humbled by your comment and the grace you extend. Very nice to meet you.

  46. Colline

    Nothing more precious than to know that God has protected your daughter in that crash.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Amen Colline, we will approach this holiday with a heart full of thanksgiving for sure.

  47. Amanda

    Oh my gosh, that must have been awful and so scary. What a horrible call to receive in the middle of the night.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It truly is the call every parent hopes they don’t have to answer. I’m just thankful she is alive. Amanda, thanks for stopping by.

  48. lynndmorrissey

    When I see that mangled mess of car remains, I stand even more in awe of the God who arranged for Muriel to walk away!!!!!!!!!! Praise Him!!!!!!!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It does bring it home, as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. So true!

  49. Ann Kroeker

    Sitting in the silence here, amazed.

  50. Rae

    Wow, pretty terrifying story, but I’m glad it had a happy ending. Hope your daughter recovers well!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      She is doing well Rae, remarkably well. One brave girl who teaches me so much about how to respond to life. Thanks for your kind comment.

  51. Katie

    Oh my gosh, what a miraculous story. I am so glad your daughter is okay!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Me too. We have so much to be thankful for as we celebrate Thanksgiving this week.

  52. Kmras

    Oh my gosh, I read this blog so fast so I could find out the conclusion! I don’t think anyone can understand that emotion you had to go through, I hope though after this you are seizing moments spent with your daughter and other loved ones and see every day as valuable.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We’ve had some wonderful moments I hope will etch eternally in my memory bank. And I am thankful for each one as we navigate the aftermath of a traumatic night. Thank you for visiting, I appreciate your kind comment.

  53. Jennifer Camp

    Oh, Shelly, I can only imagine this space, the moment of you walking up to the car, seeing your girl, and her words, her heart–yes, she is beautiful. Rejoicing with you!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I felt like I was walking in a foggy dream Jennifer, worried I might faint but knew I couldn’t afford to. It’s a bit surreal really.

  54. authorsparadise

    I cannot imagine the pain you have been through. I’ve been in several accidents myself, and have always found them frightening. I hope you and your daughter heal from this situation and wish you the best.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We are feeling an astounding peace amidst all the chaos and so very grateful for that. I know it could easily be another result. Thank you for visiting, its a pleasure to meet you.

      • authorsparadise

        I am so happy to hear you are doing well. It was nice to meet you as well.

  55. apronheadlilly

    I have gotten the call for my husband and recently my youngest son. Standing by the side of the road watching firefighters cut your baby out of his car with jaws of life and medivacing him to a trauma center is the scene no mother wants to see. Reading your tale, I empathize with you as well as have my own flashbacks!

    It was a long difficult time, but God preserved my son’s life. He should not have survived. A few weeks ago, he called, having been in another accident. He walked away and his car has been repaired, but just the call sends the adrenaline flowing. We must surrender them every day to the Lord’s care!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m so sorry you had to go through that. I now know how traumatic it really is. My daughter was nervous that they would cut her new clothes off, but thankfully they didn’t need to. So thankful you stopped by, its a pleasure visiting with you.

      • apronheadlilly

        It is so hard to see the vehicle smashed. Google maps still has my son’s Grand Am parked out front. But the first time I saw the pictures my husband took at the yard, I got nauseous. At the scene, I was looking more for life signs from my son. But it was hard to see the once whole motorcycle with my husband’s accident and then my son’s car, smashed and almost bent in half. He was T-boned by a truck at 65 mph. He had God airbags is all we can figure. He was broken up, but he healed. So with this latest one, I told him I didn’t want to see it. It is now fixed and like new and I don’t have another memory file to add to my already overloaded memory banks! Hope your daughter is doing well. It wil take a while to get over.

  56. cannopener

    Thank you for sharing this. May I share it on my Hospital Chaplaincy facebook page?

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Absolutely, would be honored for you to share it.

      • cannopener

        Thank you very much.

  57. Danelle

    I am crying and praying Shelly. Thank you God. Thank you for the inch that could have changed everything. And I am imagining how I would feel, all that pudding and all the lights and one of my own boys crying in the dark and apologizing. Oh my goodness. May His Peace that transcends our understanding be with your daughter and your family. Love you so much Shelly.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you for your constant love and support Danelle, you are truly a blessing to me. I love you too.

  58. Brooke

    WOW! and WOW! I was hanging onto every word you wrote there! It made me feel sick to think that anyone has to answer such a call but also grateful that God watched over her (and sent her that nurse when she needed one the most). I am so glad that the ending to the story was/is a happy one.
    God Bless!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Brooke, thank you for the follow, so grateful to meet you.

  59. Notes From The Backseat

    My grandmother used to tell stories of Angels that looked like people. She said that sometimes when we need help, when we have no one and are scared and alone God would allow an Angel to comfort us until help could come for us. I have to believe God put that nurse in your daughter’s path that night. He definitely had His arms wrapped tightly around your baby girl. Blessings to your family.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We think that is exactly what it was. She remembers every thing that woman said and it all was loving and encouraging. Your comment brings me to tears. Thank you.

  60. Ritu

    I was thinking I was going through a tough time but your post has made me put things in perspective. Rather than complaining I should be thankful that all my loved ones are safe and alive because at the end of the day that is what really matters. Hope you are able to brush this horrible memory aside and make many lovely ones with your daughter.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thankfulness does have a way of changing our perspective doesn’t it? So glad you turned a corner here. I’m thankful you took the time to comment!

  61. Travel with Jodi

    My prayers (and tears) are with you. Thank you for sharing this unfortunate situation to remind us what’s important. We too often forget, at least I know I do!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It is easy to forget isn’t it? I’m praying that a piece of this stays with me, getting this kind of perspective is good despite the circumstances. Thank you for visiting.

  62. Go Send or Disobey

    Words fail me. This is beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Appreciate you coming by and leaving a comment to let me know you were here.

  63. according2jewels

    My thoughts and prayers are with you and your daughter, Thank you for sharing this with the world. It truly is a time to be grateful for the people we have in our lives. May God continue to bless your family.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It makes things like lumpy gravy and imperfect table decorations seem trivial, for sure.

  64. Clark

    A friend just told me about your post. I’m the one who took her to the movies. I want to tell you that I am so so sorry that I didn’t make those girls let me take them home Thursday night. I keep telling myself that I knew better. I didn’t understand until now how terrible the accident was! Do know that I have been praying and thanking God for allowing her to come out of that wreck in one piece. Thank you for sharing this story and for your strength. Muriel’s has become a dear friend to Alex. She told me only last week how wonderful it is to have found new friends that share her strong Christian values. God has big plans ahead for you all, I can feel it.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh my goodness, please don’t blame yourself Clark. That has never crossed my mind. In all of this, we’ve all played out different scenarios, ways we would’ve done things differently. But honestly, I can see how God is using this to speak to all of us. One of them being to solidify Murielle’s friendships. I was just in awe as I watched them huddle around her on Monday and love her. I am so thankful she has found Alex and perhaps God will use this to make them all think more seriously when they take to the road. Yes, God has plans for her and all of us. We are so thankful for his grace. Thank you so much for visiting and leaving a comment, I appreciate it.

  65. Shards Of DuBois

    So happy she is alright! Great blessing for your Thanksgiving week. Your title nearly broke my heart tho, I too wait for that call, only daily….as my youngest is … lost. Sending up prayers she is ok from here on out, also. TC

    • Redemption's Beauty

      So sorry to hear about your youngest. I’m saying a prayer now and thankful you came by so I could do that. Happy Thanksgiving to you too.

  66. Lu

    What a beautiful story of love. Love for your daughter and love for God. Thank you the call was that she had an accident and not worse. My 17 yr. old son just participated in a program at school in which they fake the teenagers death due to a drunk driver. As part of the program two uniformed police officers came to my door and told me that my son “didn’t make it” due to a drunk driver. Even though I knew it was not real and part of the program I still cried through the whole thing. The program was very emotional but if it saves one life it was all worth it. Great post!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh wow, that sounds like a good program. Thankful drinking wasn’t an issue in this accident, just inexperience.

  67. Janelle

    God is amazing – still working miracles – loving His children more than we can imagine.


    • Redemption's Beauty

      Miracles around every corner when we have eyes to see. Thankful you left a comment Janelle.

  68. Karen

    Wow. Just wow.

  69. Jeremy Truitt

    What an incredible, incredible story.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Jeremy. Looked at your blog and noticed you are in Missouri. I grew up in St. Louis, haven’t been there in a long time but fond memories.

      • Jeremy Truitt

        Good ole’ STL. I visit there but usually to hit Trader Joes lol. I’m in Columbia so we’re smack dab in the middle. I was very inspired by your post, thanks again for sharing.

  70. queenlorene

    My son was involved in a terrible school bus accident, and reading this brought back all the pain and terror of that event. Praise God he was the only one relatively uninjured in his section by getting trapped under the bus driver. I am a poet, I wrote a poem about the incident privately but I still cannot post it…yet God saved your daughter; may His will be done, and you are very brave to post something so painful and frightening.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m so sorry to hear about your son’s accident and grateful he is alive to tell about it. I write because it helps me process my jumbled thoughts. The process often provides closure and clarity. Thankful you stopped by and hope you have a happy Thanksgiving.

  71. mrs relationship stuff

    Oh wow! Just wow, this was so amazing to read and be reminded of our Fathers power! I’m so grateful for how He moved in your lives! GLORY TO HIS NAME FOREVER!!! Thank you so much for sharing this!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Grateful her story reveals His glory to you, that’s an answer to my prayers. Appreciate your visit and all your comments. It’s a pleasure to meet you.

  72. Jayne

    Praise God that she is alright. I just want to give you a tight hug. You and your daughter are brave women.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you Jayne, appreciate the hug and grateful for your comment. She teaches me a lot about being brave for sure.

  73. amelie88

    Glad your daughter is okay. If your daughter is really feeling that guilty over the loss of the car (and it sounds like she is), you should tell her cars can be replaced, but daughters can’t be.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yep, told her that. She is seeing more every day how God saved her life, how important her place in the world really is.

  74. ssrijana

    what a story hope your daughters recovery is fast and well may god bless her always,

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you, she is feeling a bit better every day.

  75. mcolmo

    What a terrifying story. I am so glad your daughter is alive and hope she gets well soon. It’s so horrible. I once called my Mom at 3:00 a.m. because I had fainted in my own bathroom and there was no one else to help me get to the hospital. She drove to my house, helped me to get dressed and rushed me to Emergency. It was food poisoning and I felt very very weak and woke up covered on my own bodily fluids. I had very little strength, just enough to crawl to my bedside table and make a call. I said those exact same words: “Mom, I’m sorry.”

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m not sure why it’s our first response other than empathy takes over. We know how it would feel to be in that person’s shoes, the one taking care of us. Grateful your mother was there for you. I’m so glad she was only five minutes away, my husband felt helpless being so far away at the time.

  76. prabalmahanta

    Very well written…

  77. Molly B and Me

    This is so beautiful. Thank you for posting and we’ll pray for daughter,

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I appreciate your prayers, they are making a difference.

  78. adminwho

    God does bless us in different ways, and he blessed you this time in this way. You seem to have a beautiful family – may all of you continue helping and inspiring others.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m really so humbled by the outcome of what could’ve easily been a tragedy. Thanks for your kind comment.

  79. nikkamori

    Amazing. wonderful miracle by a wonderful God. praying for your daughter. may you find your strength in Him alone.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Amen, in Him alone. Appreciate your prayers.

  80. susielindau

    I too have been awakened by midnight phone calls. I woke up late this morning and said to my husband, “I think I slept so well because both of the kids are home.”
    I will say a prayer for your daughter…

    • Redemption's Beauty

      It was my first, hope its my last! Thanks for your prayer, appreciate the kindness.

  81. zoetic * epics

    You are an amazing writer! You had me clinging on every word until the end! I’m thankful your daughter is safe and well and this is such an important lesson – that the only important thing in Life, is living Life!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I’m sure that God will use it in her life in ways we don’t even understand right now. And yes, I am so thankful she walked away. So nice to meet you, thank you for your kindness.

  82. samanthahamade

    So thankful that your daughter survived this horrific accident. I hope she goes back to full health as soon as possible. You’re a great mother and a strong one to be able to do this on your own. But we are never really alone, are we? Happy thanksgiving to you and your family!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Happy Thanksgiving to you too. Thankfulness has taken on new meaning for us this year. And you are so right, we are never really alone. That was very apparent as I sat in my car trembling. I knew He was with me in that moment. Great to meet you Samantha.

  83. teastorybox

    Everything happens for a reason and this has happen to teach you something.
    Appreciate all the little moments with her…

  84. travelangels

    I had exactly the same experience this summer, your description matches my experience 100%, me too I was alone and ‘only’ had God to thank and help me through this night of horror and fear, I still thank him every day that she is alive and I don’t wish any parent to get this phone call that makes your life disappear in a second, that makes the minutes until you arrive at the spot seem like years and centuries…

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh yes. It’s like walking through a dream sequence in slow motion, one you want to wake up from and find out it wasn’t real. Glad to know I’m in good company. And glad your outcome was like mine. I know it could’ve been different.

      • travelangels

        true… and let’s hope and pray that we do not have to go through an experience like that ever again.

  85. troismommy

    Holy cow!!! My kids aren’t old enough to drive yet, but when they start, I’m going to be a nervous wreck! I am so glad your daughter is okay! That is so scary!!!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I know, I’ve been much more nervous than my husband about her driving. And this is actually the second accident for her. Just a few months after she got her license someone rear-ended her and totaled her first car. The poor girl has had more than her fare share of car wrecks. Praying this is her last.

  86. Kathy

    I am crying. You have shared what all of us imagine, fear, hope will never happen. Thank goodness your daughter is OK. Thank you for sharing with all of us. Many blessings.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I agree, what we hope we never have to experience. But God gave me the ability to get through what I thought I couldn’t. And for that I am so thankful.

  87. Grumpa Joe

    Yes we are on a pilgrimage together. I feel your pain. About twenty five years ago, I received a call at nine P.M. I answered. It was a nurse from a hospital in Michigan. They asked me if I knew a man named Steve. Yes, I answered, my son is named Steve, why? “There is nothing to worry about sir, but we have your son in the emergency room” he’s been in an accident. He is alive and expected to recover. Where are you? She gave me the location, it was the only hospital in the town my son lived in. We wil be there as soon as we can. Now, I had the job of going upstairs to tell my wife and kids that Steve had been hit by a car while riding his bicycle.
    Barb and I left immediately to make the hundred mile drive to see him. I was dead tired when the call came, and I was getting more tired as we drove, but adrenaline kept me going. Thank God he is alive we kept telling each other. It was the longest one and a half hour drive of my life.
    We arrived to find Steve in a private room delirious. He didn’t recognize us and was clearly out of his mind. We were so happy to see him alive it didn’t matter. We slept with him in the room that night and stayed with him the following day. His new boss came to visit and took pity on us and sent us to a room at the local Holiday Inn. We went to sleep and to clean up.
    Steve convalesced for three months at our home. He had broken vertebrae in the neck and back. His leg was broken between the knee and ankle, and he had a goose bump on his head as large as an orange, but he was alive. During convalescence he developed a blood clot in his leg which has been a problem for him ever since.
    Steve is a healthy man with two children and a good job with the same company that he worked for during the accident. He has since, ridden his bicycle across the country which is what he was training for when hit by the car. His mother has died since, but I still remember the night like it was yesterday.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I believe that. You wrote it like it was yesterday, with such detail. Thank you for sharing your story, I’m so glad to hear it has a happy ending.

  88. Cafe

    Oh gosh, I’m so sorry you and your family had to go through that. I wish you, your daughter and family all the best in her recovery.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We are really just in awe about the way God has redeemed what could have been a tragedy as a testimonial of the miraculous. It’s been difficult yes, and we are thankful for the way she is responding to it all. Thank you.

  89. Tatiana

    I’m a teenage girl. I don’t cry often, but two parts of this post brought tears streaming. The first one, the sadness and pain you went through, and how awful that must have been for you. But the second part, was your faith in God; and I can’t tell you how awesome that is. I’m praying for you, and relax in peace knowing that God’s got your back 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you for your prayers and kind comment Tatiana, I truly appreciate it.

      • Tatiana

        Anytime 🙂

  90. Who Am I?

    Thanks for sharing this incident. It instills much-need hope and faith into my heart.

    Any yes, thank you, God 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Holding on to hope with you. Glad you stopped by to leave a comment.

  91. crazysafari2

    I am amazed at the comments ,the follow up stories and sharing,most of all the love,faith and miracles from God keep us alive.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Me too, so amazed by all of this. I’m just standing on the sidelines taking it all in and trying to stay out of God’s way.

  92. rebecca93dallman

    My dad was in just a simple car crash, the birthday girl died and he lost his best friend. My dad was in a coma for 3 months and his gf at the time was also in a coma (not sure how long). He bow struggles to walk and 30 years on still having operations on his legs. That was only a simple car crash. Your daughter is a true miracle.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Wow, your story makes me even more aware of what a miracle it is that she walked away. Thank you for sharing that.

  93. hcfbutton

    This happened to my brother, not a truck but a drunk driver. I’m so thankful he came out with only bruised ribs. But, I wanted to tell you one thing. Be on the lookout for PTSD symptoms. For 18 months my brother kept seeing the flash of lights come at him from the drunk driver, and made him jumpy and nervous. Make sure your daughter gets counseling for it if you start to see any signs.

    • Sarasponda

      I couldn’t agree more! I was in an accident a while ago. Thank God no one was seriously injured, but it was enough to deploy airbags and total my car (a junker anyways… no big loss). For almost a year after, any time I saw an airbag go off (usually in car commercials) I had short flashbacks of that night. Luckily it never interfered seriously with my life, but it should be something to keep an eye out for.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you, I will. We are very, but not overly, sensitive to her at the moment. She is a very brave girl. She drove again today for the first time and seems to be doing quite well thankfully.

      • hcfbutton

        I’m so happy to hear that. My brother drove quickly after, and I’m so glad he was able to as well.

  94. Shshank Nautiyal

    They say cats have nine lives, I am living my third one. What else do I say, I am just thankful to my mum. When God decided against coming down here with sinners like myself, he send my mum as my guardian angel. Take care.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Glad you have your Mum. That is a gift, truly.

  95. nik12766

    In an ideal Fatherly God’s world, there should be an 11th commandment.
    No parent should outlive his child.
    She is safe. Joy and enjoy.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yes, I agree. It breaks my heart for those who have had to bury their children. Very aware of grace being real in this situation.

  96. hangryhippo

    To have breath is a miracle. And I thank you of remind us of that, even through this horrible experience. Thank you so much for sharing.

  97. Hera

    Praise God for His miracles. I’m glad your daughter is okay.

  98. Acamy

    Wow. Praise the Lord! Your daughter is going to have a powerful testimony. It’s hard, but God has a plan for this. This is a reminder that life is precious. Every second we are alive is a miracle in itself. That alone is reason to rejoice!

  99. Red Toenails

    So glad your daughter is OK. Keep praying!!

  100. mature wideboy

    A wonderful but sad story , beautifully told. The Lord be with you.

  101. frostbitten8

    I’m so glad your daughters ok!

  102. noeleneblog

    Thanks for sharing. Made me think of all the nights I’ve lay awake terrified, worrying about where she is (my lovely beautiful small and brilliant step daughter), where is she? why is she so late?, is she ok? what time will she get back? window watching, phone checking, mentally writing lists of things i need to do if i get ‘that call’ only to turn the light off and pretend to be cool when I finally hear the car pull up. Thankfully she has always turned up safe and sound. Sending you and your family love. x

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I know, I’ve had all those same nights too. And despite the fact that I would never wish this on anyone, we see how God is using it in astounding ways that are positive. So thankful for that truly.

  103. letthisbreathe

    I hope you can take the time to read my lengthy blog post about me having two accidents in two months and my search for Being Alive and Never Alone. This post made me cry, from the point of view of your daughter. I am sooo happy she is alive and hopefully recovering well!! It’s amazing the miracles we are given. Breathe.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I would love to read your posts and plan to pop over when I can catch a breath. Thank you so much for stopping by, I appreciate that you left such a kind comment.

  104. Believing In Beauty

    What a heartfelt and difficult story to share. Thank you for being brave and strong enough to share this. It reminds me of how precious life is and how faithful God is in watching over us. You and your daughter are in my prayers.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I don’t feel brave but its what I continue to hear. I think we take so much for granted, like waking up to a new day. That is a miracle. Thank you so much for praying, we feel the prayers of the people and are keenly aware of the way He is answering them beyond our comprehension.

  105. candidkay

    I can’t even imagine what you’ve gone through. But I do know if we’re here, it’s for a reason. Your daughter must have a lot of living left to do. So glad you get to do it together . . .

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I agree and that has been one of the blessings in all of this. The realization that she has purpose and God is with her in a real way.

  106. lsurrett2

    We’ve been there. I remember with T had his first wreck and had no idea where exactly he was. 18yo and calls me crying because he’s too scared to call his father. Another head-on that resulted in litigation. Another hit and run, had it happened 2 seconds later would have resulted in more than a concussion. He is very blessed, we all are.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh my, you really do know this don’t you? So glad you stopped by and left a comment.

  107. continentalcajuns

    I’m so glad she’s okay! I put my parents through the same thing when I was 15 … they literally went gray over the course of a week, but it brought us all closer together.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I colored my hair this week. Just sayin’. 🙂

  108. Sony Fugaban

    My heart and prayers at this very moment are with you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you Sony, I really do appreciate them.

  109. Meredith

    Oh sweet Shelly.
    I am so sorry that I am just reading about this now, but so completely grateful that I now know and can pray for all of you.

    Praising with You for your miracle.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Meredith, so grateful for your prayers friend.

  110. grinningwillow

    This brought me to tears. Thank you.

  111. Leif Oines

    Praise the Lord for safety and miracles – I really appreciate the reminder. Thank you so much for sharing.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Leif, what a privilege to see you here. So grateful to you and Margaret for praying and for asking others to join you on our behalf. We are sobered thankful for the gift of her spared life, knowing the outcome was a literal inch away from being different.

  112. Kathy

    Amazing. I am so glad your daughter is ok. I was 24 years old when a car turned in front of me and we basically hit head on. It was nothing like your daugther’s accident. But I remember seeing my parents at the hospital and the first thing I said to them was “I’m sorry.” The car they bought me was totaled. It was the day before Thanksgiving. But they didn’t care. They were just grateful I was ok. Life is more precious than possessions and God watches over us.

  113. icat12

    Thank you for telling this story. I experienced a jolting phone call in the middle of the night this past summer involving my twin sister and I remember jumping out of bed and going to the hospital with my pjs still on and my phone and keys in hand and nothing else. You are so lucky to have your daughter safe and well. God works miracles in so many ways.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I hope your twin sister was okay too. Our experiences sound quite similar as far as how we responded.

      • icat12

        Unfortunately, my sister passed away. God works in all kinds of ways and your daughter is a miracle. I think it is best to believe that everything happens for a reason – that there is some bigger purpose we just cannot understand.

  114. Daily Doses of God's Word Devotional

    As I read this post an overwhelming sadness yet joy came over me. “I’m sorry” must be the universal response when one of our children have an accident. I was preparing for work when the phone rang. My son was late coming home from his overnight job. On the other end of the phone was the OnStar rep. I knew it was not good. Funny thing was right before she called I heard on the news about an accident that was blocking traffice. Well to my surprise, the OnStar rep was telling me that my son had been in an accident and she patched me through to him. His first words were, “Mommy I’m sorry”. Numbness came over me until he told me he was okay but the car was totaled. Yes I was upset because he was not where he was suppose to be but thankful that the accident did not take his life. As I read this post it reminded me to be grateful for his life and another chance to spend quality time with him. Thank you and may God continue to bless you and your daughter. Natalie (a writer for Daily Doses).

  115. Kelly Greer

    Just read this Shelly…and I am so thankful you witnessed a miracle in this situation and your daughter is okay. Praise the Lord! for being there with her and with you in that traumatic time. A reminder of the blessed gift of life! Thank you Lord!

  116. Rich

    Thanks, Shelly. Your post reminded us of a call in January 1993. Our son was in an accident (20 years old at the time) and lived 5+ hours away from us. When the ER nurse called us, she stopped in mid sentence and said, “Don’t leave! He just went critical.” And we waited by the phone for the next seven hours as he was undergoing surgery on pelvis, shoulder and brain. Yes, he lived. And we praise God for that. And I praise God for your miracle of life with your daughter. What a blessing!

    • shelly

      Glad you read this and it reminded you of God’s faithfulness Rich. Thanks for visiting. Appreciate you leaving a comment to let me know you were here.

  117. Alia_Joy

    I remember reading about this back when it happened. Oh my gosh, I don’t remember that picture. To have breath is a miracle. Yes. Thanks for linking up with us! Love having you.

  118. Christy Willard

    Powerful, Shelly! I can’t imagine receiving that middle of the night call. Thankful for your miracle! A reminder of how quickly things can change and how precious life is.

  119. Sybil Brun

    Hi Shelly this was so humbling to read. Though we’ve never met, I found myself tearing up and thankful anew for the gift of life. Thanks for sharing!

  120. Lol_ly_gag

    Wow. Shelly, I am so glad that this ended in the miracle of ordinary things; the ability to walk to your car, sleep under your roof, fret about class the next morning. What a powerful reminder. I’m thankful that you posted this, friend.

  121. Darlene Collazo @ {In Pursuit}

    I can’t even imagine, Shelly! Surely a miracle. God is so good!

  122. Debbie Keady

    Shelly, I can so relate to this post. My daughter recently called us from many states away telling us the ambulance was coming and she didn’t think she would make it and she wanted us to know she loved us. We stayed on the phone with her until help arrived. She lived, but has been diagnosed with a chronic illness that is very scary and has shaken our world to bits and shattered my heart to the core. I have been walking in the dark with God. I’m so thankful your daughter is safe and that mine is improving. Oh the hearts of mothers for their children. We would gladly trade places with them when they face hard things.


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