It all started at 2 am this morning when I awoke with that awful feeling in my throat that serves as a flashing hazard light, informing me that I am set to feel sick for a bit. Something about the incessant and utterly fruitless swallowing caused sleep to elude me, so I went out to my orange chair to curl up in my Gift Quilt, mindlessly watch a teenage drama (for the record: if your dad was killed out at sea during a hurricane, no one would call you to identify the body within 4 hours and definitely not while the storm was still raging. I mean, I understand that from a writer’s standpoint, uber-attractive female needed to end up alone in a car for a long time with uber-attractive male. But even at 2 am, it stretched the plausibility to the brink) and browse for burgundy sheer lip gloss.
No. I couldn’t tell you how these odd shopping fixations come to my mind. But they do. Often. More often than I am currently comfortable admitting.
The poor sleep and cranky throat led to a series of decisions, including but not limited to the decision to take the previous night’s roast chicken carcass (side note: you really haven’t eaten chicken until you have stuffed it with sauteed veggies and fresh rosemary and then wrapped the entire bird in butter pastry that bakes all the juices in until you have a flaky, golden crust and meat so juicy you could cut it with a spoon) and bring it from death unto life by transforming it into a slow simmering broth. What could be more soothing on a sad, icky throat than broth?
Broth with white beans and kale and a side of homemade garlic bread, of course. And that was where the trouble began.
I am not adept at beans, and since I had already made the broth, I felt no angst about just opening a can of beans. Well… until my older-than-dirt can opener failed to completely disconnect the lid, leaving 2 stray metal threads attached that I, like a stuffy-headed moron, thought I could probably yank loose without re-engaging the services of my can opener, thus slicing my finger open.
Huh. That description is really not doing it justice.
You know how in movies if they want to show the gore of someone being garroted they will draw a nasty, bumpy and jagged bright red corn syrup line across the front of the throat? Like that — but on the lower portion of my finger between the 2 joints and the corn syrup had no off switch. Apparently my femoral artery runs through my finger.
And now you get to see a new side of my uselessness. My knowledge of first aid is pretty sketchy at best, but even what little I know fled the premises as blood splattered about the kitchen, aided by my rather creative (if I do say so) hyperventilating dance/hop around from tile to tile, trying not to say anything more explicit than “Oh bother” and trying to find large enough towels to staunch the bleeding. This scene kept running through my head:
I figured the key was just to put neosporin on a bandaid and return to schooling the kids through my cold (insert eye rolling and “what could go wrong”). Interesting… one bandaid soaked before I was done wrapping it. Alright, a second bandaid on top (anything to not look at it, quite frankly). Wow… red badge of courage strikes again… huge wad of gauze wrapped around and secured with that weird stretchy tape that they put on when you get a blood draw.
This seemed to be holding, out of sight out of mind, until I went to make the kids toast and noticed, much to the chagrin of all involved, that blood was again spurting out from under the multiple layers of bandage and running down my hand. Sigh. You expect more after 3 hours of ignoring an injury.
There was nothing else for it: SUPERGLUE TIME.
Our Boy Quail is a fascinating bundle of bruises and bumps (he once got a whopping, perfectly circular purple bruise from a heart monitor sticker. Privacy took a holiday that day, because you’d better believe every nurse on the ward took a picture) and has been known to slice himself open so far that a layer of brown fat, which looks disturbingly like tapioca pudding, gushes out (and this, usually, from walking across a completely flat floor). So I have learned that stitches can often be avoided, and the accompanying doctor bill, with enough creativity.
The key, however, is getting the gaping wound to stop gaping and pouring forth the liquid of life long enough that you can glue the dang thing shut! And this, as of the time of publication, eludes me. Turns out, simply mixing strong glue with your blood doesn’t necessarily cause anything to heal. Sigh. Perhaps later today, a stapler… stay tuned.
The application today is obvious, no? Do not take shortcuts. True in opening cans, even more true in your walk with Christ. Reading inspirational one-liners is not a substitute for immersing yourself in the Word of God. Watching a sermon online is not a replacement for being in God’s house, worshiping with God’s people, the way He tells you to. The latest parenting method you read about that prescribes cuddles and the family bed and becoming a mother who never says no is not the same thing as parenting faithfully, with godly discipline (which, spoiler alert, requires you to discipline yourself first).
If you are reading this from a puddle of spiritual blood that has already been spilled by your foolishness, no clotting anywhere in sight, take heart. God, unlike my weak-sauce superglue, is able to heal the wounds, not lightly, but fully. This may hurt a bit… repentance often does… but anything less than a full turning away from the shortcut and into the path of the cross will leave you a jagged mess of a life and a soul that looks like it met the wrong end of a tin can. Look on Christ — and be healed.