b u r n e d

“Hello Jana, my name is Dr. Ocel. What you have is a Lisfranc fracture.

Three of your metatarsals are broken and one tendon is sliced.”

Ok, I don’t really care what its called. What does it mean.

How long do I have to be off it.

Please don’t tell me I have to have surgery. I’ve never had surgery before.

“You will have to have surgery so that I can repair your tendon.”


“I’m going to need to put a pin in to reattach the tendon. I’d like to do it as soon as possible.I have you scheduled for Tuesday.”


“Do you have any questions?”

Questions! Yes, God, I have some questions.

How did I break my foot? How long till I can use it again? WHY did this happen?

Surgery came and went without a hitch.

I spent the next two days sitting on the couch in front of my laptop.

Karalyn would come and go to work, shopping and hanging out with friends. Dad would get home every night and head to the backyard where he’d plant more flowers, water the trees and sit down to enjoy it all. Grandma would putter around the house all day, caring for her dolls and taking cat naps and mom would vacuum, do laundry, get grandma ready for the day, run to the grocery store, go to work, come home, make dinner get grandma ready for bed and then do it all over again.

And there I sat.

I neither came nor went.

My vibrating phone kept me sane.

My wonderful friends would txt to say hey, ask me how I was, and wish me well.

Finally on Friday I went to work with Karalyn.

I crutched out to go sit by the pool and wait for Karalyn to teach her private lessons.

I found a vacant seat in the shade and cranked my ipod up. I pretended that I was reading my book, but I couldn’t keep my eyes off of the kids climbing up the high dive ladder, or the teenage girls running up the stairs to the water slides, or the moms chasing after their tots around the baby pool.

Karalyn finally finished and we set out to spend the evening with some friends. I hadn’t hung out with anyone for almost a week. Who cares that we’re meeting to go bowling. It’ll just be good to get out.

And there I waited.

Watching everyone run up to the lane and roll their ball toward the pins.

Two hours at the bowling alley wore on and Karalyn finally conceded to call it a day and take me home.

I crawled up the stairs to my bedroom, crashed on my bed and didn’t move until almost 10 the next morning. So I got out of bed and sat down on the couch with my laptop. What’s new.

Me, sitting on the couch as my life passes me by.

I didn’t go with Karalyn to the car race that afternoon. I didn’t go to church with my friends that evening and I didn’t sleep that night as I could do nothing to relive my hot, sweaty, itchy left foot.

Sunday morning church was about knowing and following God’s will for our lives.

Ya. God’s will. That was a touchy subject.

What the heck is your will God?

Pastor says we have to “row our boat”;

to get out and live our lives in order for God to show us what He wants us to do.

Well, God, I can’t row my boat.

I can’t do anything but sit on my couch at home.

And that’s exactly what I did. All day on Sunday. Bitter, irritated, depressed, there I sat.

The silly shows I was watching on Netflix were even getting on my nerves now.

The next day was Independence Day, the Fourth of July.

Mom wanted a girls day in Boulder, and I was up for doing anything besides sitting on the couch.

I checked my sour attitude and prepared for a day of not sitting on the couch. She took us all over Boulder and out to lunch. We didn’t do anything that fantastic, but I don’t remember having that much fun just hanging out. It was refreshing.

Then Karalyn and I split to go to a friend’s bbq.

The evening flew by and before I knew it, it was time to go to the firework show.

We sang our hearts out to the tunes on the radio and teased each other and laughed until we cried.

Ha, life is so good.

We finally drove home, not the least bit tired and decided to lay out in the back and watch the stars.

It was midnight and cloudy, making it hard to see any stars, but if you looked out on the horizon you could still see fireworks dancing above the rooftops of the houses behind ours.

But then we saw something else.

Smoke started rising where the fireworks had been.

Suddenly, out of the dead of the night, the urgent cries of a man’s voice echoed across the sky yelling for people to evacuate their homes.

Not one minute later the peaceful quiet of the night was shattered by the eerie wailing of fire trucks.

Stunned I sat up on the deck and watched smoke billow across the black sky as the orange flames of a house fire consumed every earthly possession those two families had. The black of the smoke was tinted by the reddish orange of the fire as it climbed to the second story of the home threatening to devour the entire block.

Every five minutes another fire truck bulleted across the country roads near my house to aid in putting out the fire. My eyes glazed over as I stared at the billowing smoke and I wondered what was going on at the base of that fire.

Were the pajama clad families cowering in the street as the roaring flames licked up their homes like a hungry dog? Were they wailing at their loss, tears streaming down their faces as they imagined their pictures, beds, couches drowning in the blaze? Or were there blank stares of confusion, loss, and insecurity.

Ninety minutes and countless fire trucks later the smoke finally began to dissipate.




No front door to hobble through.

No stairs to crawl up.

No couch to sit on.

Suddenly, I find myself very thankful to be in the position that I’m in.

Dear God, I am sorry.

For being so whiny, and pitiful, and self absorbed.

I have no idea why my foot broke, or why it’s going to take three months to get better, or why it had to happen in the summer, but I’m sure you have a plan.

I’m sorry for second guessing You.

I am thankful for what I’ve got.

For my incredible friends,

for my beautiful family,

and for

my comfortable couch.


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