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Not the Christmas I planned

December 21, 2016
By Joyce Schenk , Westfield Republican

There are times in life when you hear news that you simply say, "Oh, that just can't be! "

Last week, I was a part of one of those "can't be" events. It has changed Christmas, 2016, as well as the coming months.

You may recall that back in May of this year, I suffered a badly broken right leg while trying to get out of the shower. What followed was surgery and months of intense physical therapy.

Finally, in October, life was beginning to return to something like normal. That was until last week.

This was the setting:

Son Tim was cast as a shepherd in our church's Christmas pageant. Naturally, I went along to watch the rehearsal. How often do you get to act as a stage-door Mom?

Mid-way through the practice, I felt nature's urge and rolled my wheelchair to the rest room.

The handicapped facility at our church is down a long hallway, separated from the sanctuary by at least six heavy doors.

After I had finished my task, I carefully worked my way around the wheelchair in the small cubical. And I almost made it. But, due to deterioration in my legs and feet, my left leg collapsed.

Nothing sounds quite like two bones breaking in unison!

Not only was the pain severe, but I knew I was in trouble when I felt my shoe was turned the opposite direction from my leg.

With the pageant practice in full swing so far away from me, there was nothing for me to rely on but my voice. So, lying twisted on the floor between the wall and the toilet, I screamed my lungs out for twenty minutes.

Eventually, one of my church sisters wandered in and found me. And a very odd group began to gather in the ladies' room.

The paramedics joined the growing crowd. And, direct from the pageant run-through, Mary, the mother of Jesus, joined me on the floor and held my hand as the paramedics did their difficult and painful work.

Soon, Joseph and one of the Wise Men came and carefully lifted the useless wheelchair out of the way.

As the ambulance pulled away from the church, I knew I had a long struggle ahead. But it crossed my mind that there was at least one blessing I could hold on to.

Now that I've broken both the right leg and the left leg I can at least be grateful that God didn't see fit to make me an octopus!



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