It Could Always Be Worse

broken windshieldDid I mention our front windshield got smashed this week? Yeah, you know I’ve got a lot going on when a piece of asphalt flies up and smashes our windshield, leaving damage the size of a dinner plate (not including the tendrils/cracks shooting out from the break, all the way to the edges of the windshield) … and I didn’t say anything about it on Facebook.

It happened on the Watterson Expressway, after I’d taken our oldest to find out if he had strep (he did). It was crazy and frightening (although I guarantee you my reaction was probably more frightening than the incident itself). However, based on how our week was going, it was par for the course.

Once my son started breathing again, he said, “It’s my fault. This wouldn’t have happened to us if you didn’t have to take me to the doctor.”

“Oh, honey, that’s not true,” I said. “It could have happened to us anytime, anywhere. Besides, we’re pretty blessed, because it could always be worse. Maybe, because we were here, we saved someone else from getting hit – someone whose windshield isn’t as sturdy as ours. Plus, our windshield was all scratched up, from a dozen other things that have happened to it over the years, and now we get a new windshield!* And won’t this make a great story to tell when we get home?”

Recapping the event with my husband, I realized how the rest of our drama-filled week put things like a smashed windshield into perspective. And I could preach for a month on the old, scratched, cloudy view that been bothering me for year, but had to undergo serious trauma before it could be made new again.

Reframing a situation comes easily to me, when I’m doing it for someone else. My challenge is to learn to do this in my own self-talk – when worrying about bills or home repairs or what I want to be when I grow up – and skip the first world drama altogether. Because let’s face it, I wouldn’t have a damaged windshield if I didn’t have a car – now that would be worse.


* If you live outside Kentucky and are wondering why having to replace a smashed windshield didn’t send me into tears, it’s because all windshield repairs and replacements are FREE in Kentucky, thanks to all the coal trucks that have traveled our highways for years. After decades of dealing with people whose cars were damaged by flying chunks of coal, it became cheaper for the state to pass a law making all these repairs free.


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