I posted the picture to Facebook, since that's what you're supposed to do when you get in an accident (right?).
I am basically fine, no serious damage, except I bumped my head pretty hard when I undid my seatbelt upside down and fell loose. I'm really achy all over, I have some scratches on my wrist (I look so Emo) from broken glass, my wrist hurts from falling on it, and my thumbnail got ripped off below the quick (it really hurts when I type, but lucky you, I'm soldiering on like a little trooper!).
So I was standing there waiting for them to flip my car over and tow it, and for my friend to come pick me up so that I could help him with his project (yes, I still helped him out. But he bought me dinner with dessert, so it was all good, lol). And I realized, damn, this could have been so much worse and I took the time to
I had my seatbelt on. If I hadn't, I might have gotten half thrown out of the window, or otherwise seriously battered or even killed. The seatbelt did a great job to keep that all from happening. So I was grateful to seatbelt designers and makers.
I flipped my car and I was able to sneak out the broken window unassisted. No one else hit my car or me. Thanks awesome strangers!
And also with my nifty phone I was able to take a picture of my car. Which was good because when I told Butch I had totaled it he refused to believe I was serious.
I thought about accidents such as these, where people end up with broken bones, severed spinal cords, disfigured faces, stitches, pain, or even death. I was really lucky (using the term loosely. I don't believe in luck. But you know what I mean).
Ok, I am sad for my little car which I'd had for about 11 years (and the upcoming expense we now have to deal with). But that's another thing I thought of as I watched them tow it away. That car, a Subaru Outback Impreza Wagon, was awesome. It did its job and kept me safe. It hardly ever had any problems and only really required basic maintenance. So yeah, I'm a bit sad for that. I loved that car. It was safe and practical, my two favorite things in a car.
So here I am, a godless, soulless heathen, and I am not lamenting, I'm not angry or bitter, I'm not feeling sorry for myself. Instead I am appreciating the kindness of people most of whom I will never even know the names of, and the technology created by other nameless people that made things turn out better for me.
How can that be? Aren't I supposed to be an empty, bitter shell, my back turned from the Lord? How can I be handling this without Jesus to comfort me?
Well, I just said it, really. I am a humanist. I celebrate humanity. I derive great comfort and happiness from my positive interactions with wonderful people. Also, I revel in the wonders of what humans can do through science, research and technology. Our big brains and opposable thumbs discover and create awe-inspiring things.
For instance, complex lumps of metal and plastic that move with the press of a foot on a pedal, are easily controlled with one hand, and can even carry heavy loads as well as transport people and other creatures just about anywhere over land relatively safely.
I am rejuvenated daily by the wonders of this universe, and our place in it. There are humans who help me to delight in these things, as my little brain can find the vastness and grandeur of our lonely little planet, not to mention the solar system or the whole expanse of space, to be overwhelmingly awe-inspiring. So thanks to Carl Sagan, Sir Richard Attenborough, Richard Dawkins, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Stephen Hawking and Lawrence Krauss to name just a few, for helping me to appreciate the Cosmos as best I can.
I had this long legged house centipede in my shower for about 3 months this autumn. I turned on the water one day and he popped out of the drain. He stayed in there for the rest of his life, living off of what I do not know. Every day when I took a shower, I would coax him to the other end of the shower, since they drown very easily. He would hide behind the stool I keep my various concoctions on. I felt a bit sad when he died and I didn't see him sitting in there. Not that I expected him to live long, of course, but he was my little shower companion.
I tell you this because I think, if you let yourself, you can find wonder, beauty, exquisite complexity (like my little friend's myriad legs all working together), and so much more in simple things. Add people to the mix (and other animals who have consciousness) and the world just explodes forth with amazing grandeur.
I think it's my nature to be in awe of nature, but I also think we can cultivate how we see the world. My worldview is very different now than a mere 10 years ago, partly because I went on a Quest to understand and learn about the Universe and our place in it. I sought out knowledge and let it open doors to wonderful new worlds. It closed doors too, to nonsense, pseudosciences and religions, and that's a good thing because I'd rather have hard truths than comforting delusions (that's another paraphrased Saganism).
I think that's how I can total my car and still find reasons to be grateful when I'm standing on the side of the road amid the broken glass and car guts, my personal things strewn about. I think cultivating a healthy, pragmatic, realistic attitude allows me to face death unblinking.
I don't want to die, and I'm very glad I was so well protected in my little car on Monday so that I didn't have to, but I know that eventually this life will end completely. My atoms will return to the Cosmos and continue their nearly eternal journey. Richard Dawkins said, "Matter flows from place to place, and momentarily comes together to be you. Some people find that thought disturbing. I find the reality thrilling." I couldn't agree more!
There's so much good to find, even if "good" is just a man-made construct. It's still valid and wonderful.