So this is my first post on my new blog! Yay! As a new Army wife, I wanted to create a site that would both comfort and inspire readers… for we are never alone. My first post will prove to be a bit intense, but it was one of my first tests of strength as an army wife.
Allow me to illustrate a bit of background information. Connor and I had the most amazing wedding on May 30th of this year. It was literally the best day of my life. One that I had been waiting on for almost six years. I will go into more details about that perfect day in later posts. After our wedding, we spent six days in Napa Valley, California, before returning home to Colorado for one night before packing our truck and driving across the country to Maryland where Connor would be stationed in medical school. This was our first PCS (permanent change of station) and I was thrilled to finally start a life with my husband! Connor and I spent three days driving across the majority of the country. First from Denver to Kansas City, Missouri, then to Lexington, Kentucky, and finally to our home in Maryland.
Four days after arriving in Maryland, I drove my husband to the airport in Baltimore so that he could begin his six weeks of BOLC (basic officer’s leadership course) in Texas. That’s right, after being married for exactly two weeks, I was about to be left in Maryland, alone, for six weeks. I had never lived outside of Colorado before this move, and I was honestly terrified. I prayed every night that God would give me the strength to endure the loneliness, but I knew that I was in for a difficult time. This, however, was not the immediate test of my strength.
After dropping Connor off at the airport at 5:30 in the morning, I began the hour drive back to our apartment. Half-way home, I felt a sudden jerk. I was going 60 mph on an unknown highway, and I immediately panicked. I credit God for giving me the wisdom to change three lanes over to the shoulder of the highway, where I parked the car and froze. What happened? Did I seriously just get a flat tire? I have been alone in this unknown state for only thirty minutes and I already have to deal with a flat tire? Shaken up, I did what any newlywed woman would do… I called my husband. Fortunately, Connor had not yet boarded the plane to Texas, so he was able to answer the phone. I was blessed that this was the case. For many wives in the military, this is not the case. I cried on the phone to Connor, and he finally convinced me to get out of the car and check for a flat tire. I did… but what I discovered was not a flat tire.
All of the lug nuts that were holding the front tire of our car were completely gone. All five had ripped off of the car. Basically these are what hold the tire onto the car; therefore, there was essentially nothing but gravity keeping the tire on my car. When the roadside assistance man from USAA finally arrived (to fix what was a supposed flat tire) he informed me that he could not do anything and that I was lucky that my truck had not flipped. I then proceeded to call a tow truck to take me to a shop to fix our truck. Three times that day I heard the same thing: “it’s a miracle that the tire stayed on the car… this could have been seriously bad”. I have been alone in an unknown state for five hours and I’ve been told three times that I’m lucky to be alive.
I was not lucky. It was not “lucky” that my truck didn’t flip. Apparently, the lug nuts broke off our truck because the tire maintenance place in Colorado (where we had taken the truck to get it fit to drive across the country) tightened them too much. The question then, becomes why? Why didn’t this horrible incident happen earlier? Why didn’t our tire fall off when Connor and I were traveling 80+ mph in Kansas? Or on the winding roads of West Virginia? But no, we actually made it to Maryland. The auto body shop said it was a miracle, the dealership said it was a miracle, the tire company in Colorado said it was a miracle… indeed, it was a miracle.
Connor and I traveled across the country on Eagle’s wings. God carried us from our home in Colorado to our new home in Maryland. Our journey was continuously guarded by our faith and by our Father. Simply, there is no other explanation. We drove over 1500 miles on a unstable tire, experiencing the beautiful country that the Lord created, and experiencing the beauty of marriage. We were following the path that God set out for us, even though we didn’t realize it the way we should have. Every morning we woke up happy, healthy, and in love. Connor and I arrived at our new home as God intended, but only because he carried us here.
I am not sharing this as a story about myself. This is purely a story about the love that God has for us. I was, and still am, experiencing anxiety whenever I set foot behind the wheel of our truck. Each time, I tightly grip the wheel or, if Connor is driving, I grip his arm. Each time we go on the highway I feel anxiety. Each time I remember what could have happen. But, each time we arrive safe at home, I am reminded that God is still guiding us on our journey. I am reminded that God is holding us safe, and that I must remain steadfast in my faith for God’s plan. Though our destinations may be closer that 1500 miles, we still cannot fulfill them without His guiding hand. It was the first trial that I experienced as an army wife. It took me a long time to feel confident, to feel safe. But the trials that God lead me through encouraged me to grow, both as wife, and as a woman of faith. If He can bring us safely across our beautiful country, then He can do anything. We made it across the country on Eagle’s wings, and those are the wings that will guide us throughout our life.
And He will raise you up on eagle’s wings, bear you on the breath of dawn, make you to shine like the sun, and hold you in the palm of His hand.
– Michael Joncas