Counting My Blessings

Sometimes you have to look at life and think about how you blessed you are. Maybe it's the holiday, maybe it's personal stuff going on, or maybe, in my case, it's certain events that take place that make you think "Wow, I am blessed". Either way, I figured I would share how I've been blessed lately.

Friday was a long day of traveling to get home for Easter weekend. A little background info- I go to school an hour and a half away from the St. Louis airport. Southwest flies directly from St. Louis to Dallas, so it is the best airport for me to fly out of even if it's not close. Because A) I don't have a car and B) even if I did, it would cost a fortune to park it at the airport, I take a shuttle service that drives back and forth to and from the airport. The bus from the shuttle service picks me up at a McDonald's about 10-15 minutes outside of my college town, so I get a friend to drop me off there.

Thursday I was asking around for a ride to the McDonald's and everyone was either going home already or had class at that time (yes, we had class on Good Friday. We also have class the Monday after Easter. Don't get me started!). Finally, I found a generous friend who was willing to take me! Well, when Friday rolled around things didn't go so smoothly. I needed to be at the bus by 2:20. I texted my friend at 2 to let her know I was ready and didn't hear anything back. I started to get nervous, but figured we still had time; it was no big deal yet. Well when 2:10 rolled around and I still hadn't heard from her, I started to panic. I called her and there was no answer. Time was running out quickly. Finally, I called another friend who said she was willing to take me. I am so thankful for this friend.

On the way, I called the main office to see if they could let the bus driver know I was gonna be like 5 minutes late. He said they could stall for 5 minutes, but not longer than that. I got there at 2:25. I just barely made the bus.

After a long ride, I made it to the airport, got my bag checked and everything. As I waited for my flight, I started to notice it was getting pretty dark outside. I noticed a bunch of dark clouds rolling in and I hoped it wouldn't affect my flight. Little did I know what was coming that way...

I made it home safely and was enjoying a nice, quiet evening with my family and our next door neighbors/great family friends. Then, I got a text delivering such scary news: The airport I had just been at a few hours ago in St. Louis was directly hit by a tornado.

The airport on Saturday with debris from the storm. Image from St. Louis Today.

Immediately, I thought over my day. I thought about how close I was to missing that bus. If my friend hadn't sped, if I hadn't found the second friend to take me, if I had been just another minute or two later I would've missed the bus. Which meant I would have to be on the later bus, which meant I may or may not make my flight. Which means I could have easily been at the airport when the tornado hit.

All I could think was how blessed I was. Seriously, I believe a higher power was looking out for me because I got so unbelievably lucky. This weekend has been a seriously emotional one for my family and I. We got some bad news about my sister, and we are trying to deal with what comes next. (More on that later.) I don't talk about religion a whole lot, and I am not usually one to just throw out God's name when something goes my way, but I truly, truly believe that He knew I needed to be here this weekend. He orchestrated everything so that I could be here with my family in our time of need.

And another blessing; Southwest's terminal was very minimally damaged, and they have already started having planes fly in and out again. Which means I won't shouldn't have any trouble getting back Monday morning. One less thing to worry about when my heart is already heavy with other things.

So, for now, even though my mind and my heart are heavy with the opposite of blessings, I am choosing to be thankful for the blessings that have occurred. I am choosing to focus on the good, and doing my best to deal with the not-so-good.

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Holly said...

Wow, you sure were lucky not to have been in the airport during the tornado!

I know what you mean about feeling as if you've had a "near miss" with something. I felt the same way after the earthquake here in Feb. So many thoughts like "What if I hadn't been at college? What if I'd gone into town instead? What if I'd been on a bus that had something fall onto it?"


Rebecca Louise. said...

Guuted to hear about your sister Patrice but she's a fighter. She has gotten this far so she will go all the way. I have the faith and I know you guys do too.

How awful about the tornado. You were lucky but never wallow on "what ifs?" it sucks the fun out of life. Have a wonderful Easter pal!

Mandy said...

Wow. What a near miss. Still praying for you and your sister.

Audreya said...

When I first saw the reports about the airport, I thought "Is someone I know there? It seems like it..." but I couldn't put my finger on it until I saw your tweet that you were safe. Then I remembered seeing your earlier tweet that you were at the airport. Whew! Too close for comfort but blessed indeed!

My airport near miss was that I had a flight scheduled for the morning of Sept. 12th, 2001. I spent weeks saying "If it had been 24 hours earlier..."

Also, praying hard for your sister and you and your family!

bridget152755 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bridget152755 said...

Wow! now i'm counting my blessings~~ thanks for sharing!! :)

Laural Out Loud said...

I just heard about the tornado at the airport this morning! Thanks to God that He moved you from harm's way, just in time. I continue to pray for your sister, for God's healing grace to descend upon her. What a blessing that you were able to be with your family this weekend.

Mere said...

I am so grateful you weren't there when that tornado hit. What a blessing!

I am praying for you, your sister and everyone involved. Keep your smile on, though I know it's hard. You can do it!! xoxoxo

Love, Mere

Lynn said...

Praying for your sister and your family... I know how awful cancer is, it's affected my family more times than I care to remember.

We've been having all kinds of bad storms and tornadoes in my area lately, and one actually hit my college campus a few years ago in Tennessee.. scary stuff! Glad you made it out okay :)

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