We're Wrecked

It’s another hot day in southeast Texas, and I can picture my new friend and I walking into my house, the steel screen door slapping closed behind us. I’m embarrassed that my mom’s rehab equipment is hanging right there between the den and entrance to our galley kitchen, and I’m going to have to try to explain it or, more likely, try to quickly dismiss it so I don’t feel so weird. Looking a lot like a Johnny Jump Up, it’s a device made of metal and heavy canvas that Mom sits in front of and places her head into; somehow it’s supposed to help relieve the chronic neck pain with which she has suffered since our horrible car wreck in 1963.

The Wreck is an event that is referred to in a sort-of B.C./A.D way in our family. There was life before The Wreck that I don’t remember. I observe in the square Kodak pictures and grainy family movies a slightly familiar couple giddy with excitement who finally have a baby boy and a girl they’ve adopted after nine years

Let's join in the work Jesus started so many years ago as He got out of the temple and purposefully sought the outsiders.

of being childless. Mom is able to use both her hands in the movies, and it’s strange to me to see her left hand extended normally and not curled up as I’m used to experiencing.

She walks without a limp and moves quickly, and more noticeably, there’s a red-lipsticked smile on her face.

Life after The Wreck is a house is full of adaptive equipment. Our cutting board has nails driven through one side in a concentric circle so Mom can put an apple or onion on them and try to cut with one hand. There are rails in the tub and a special knob on the steering wheel of the VW Beetle to help her drive. She wears a wig that often goes askew because styling her hair with one hand is so difficult. Most afternoons when I come home from scho