Monday, May 31, 2010


May 15, 2010 was supposed to be the day that Rachel and Rebekah began their training as lifeguards. They had already been hired on by Sweetwater Pools as lifeguards under the idea that they were trained and ready for the opening day at the pool to which they were assigned (Fairfield subdivision). The girls had already been to the Introduction to Sweetwater/Training the Saturday prior and were really very excited about what the summer was going to hold for them. Then came May 15, 2010...
The girls took off early that morning to arrive at Eagles Landing Country Club Pool for their first day of training. They had worked the week before at the pool on post with the lifeguard, Daisy, who was helping them prepare for the prerequisites they had to accomplish before even being considered capable of being trained. The girls had to be able to swim 300m and then they had to save a "brick" from the bottom of the pool in 1 min 30 seconds. They trained with Daisy the weeks before the actual test on May 15. I was so nervous for both of them but knew they could do it.

I wasn't there, but Bekah kept me up to date via texting that they had arrived and gotten the testing started. Shortly thereafter, I got a text that both of them had survived the swim and were doing well (although Rachel had a few issues with her swim she passed!) A bit later I get another text that says Rachel failed the "saving of the brick" because she took in too much water as she was trying to swim back to the wall. She apparently got out of the pool, threw the brick down and yelled, "that kid would have died." I felt so bad for her. She takes this stuff so seriously and really gets mad when she doesn't do well, or could have hurt someone. She is so sensitive. Thankfully, they allowed her to do it again once she had herself back together and she passed with flying colors in 1 min 20 seconds! Bekah had already passed and she was just hanging out waiting for everyone else to finish.

Then the training in the pool began and all seemed to be going well. Until they learned to jump off the lifeguard stand. Bekah was the 5th to go and the first 2 apparently jumped straight out and off the stand and once hitting the bottom, popped up and said, "I hit my butt" - meaning on the bottom of the pool. So, the lifeguard trainer told the kids to begin jumping off to the side in "deeper" water (about 4 to 4 1/2 feet). I guess someone else complained that their ankles hurt and then it was time for Bekah to go. She did what she was asked to do, and hit the bottom of the pool. When she popped out of the water, she said, in a seemingly calm voice, "I just broke my leg." They didn't believe her until she said it again. So they all jumped in to save her. Yep. Leg was broken! Funny - the remaining kids were told to continue jumping off the stand, including Rachel, who also stated that her ankles hurt when she jumped off! So why o why did the jumping continue?

Anyway, I was called and thankfully I was only a few miles away. Arriving on the scene, it was quite evident that the leg was either broken or dislocated and so I called for EMS to take her to Henry Medical Center. X-rays confirmed the worst fears that it was broken and the doctor added - you will need surgery for a plate and screws.

So, a week later, Bekah had surgery and is now recovering in a lime green cast. No job of lifeguarding. No job of working Chick Fil A. No fun in this summer that was planned way differently than what we have in front of us.

Thus, I ask the Lord - what is the deal? Why this? Why now? I got nothing. But then some things did hit me. I don't believe the break occurred for this purpose, but I believe the Lord will use this as an opportunity to teach. Bekah is not the most humble person and hates to ever ask anyone to help her. She would rather kill herself trying to do it on her own than humbly admit she can't do something and ask for someone to assist her. This has been her opportunity.

Also, Bekah has her ideas about what she was going to do this summer and when and how. That has all been thwarted by this unforeseen circumstance and she has an opportunity to learn how to handle life when it throws you a major curve ball. You can choose to complain all day and all night (which she did there for a bit) or you can live peacefully with the event/situation and ask what you can learn about yourself through the process. She hasn't quite made it to the latter yet. We are still working on the not complaining part!

God can use interruptions in our lives to teach us many things. But, if we are too stubborn to sit still and wait to hear what He has to say or teach, we miss out on some life lessons that could really help us in the future. If we truly believe that God is in everything, knows everything that happens, and wants what is best for us, then how can we not step back when life throws us a curve and ponder what He has in store for us? I want to be the first to say, "OK God, clearly I wasn't listening before and now you need my attention - Here it is! Tell me!" I am praying that for Bekah!

Rachel has gone on to begin lifeguarding and is doing a fabulous job. She has already in just a few short days, been thrown some curves of her own (people climbing over fences to get in to the pool she was guarding), and she has handled them with grace and dignity. I am proud of what she is becoming!

Sarah and Zach are doing well despite the craziness in the house. The continue working on their school after having said goodbye to dear friends, Shelby and Janlyn. Zach will say goodbye to Ethan and David this summer. This is truly the May 2010 we hadn't planned for!

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