I wanted to purchase a plane ticket online. I have two main debit/credit card accounts I could dip into. So, I simply transferred some money in my less-used bank account. That seemed to work, until I couldn’t find the debit card. I’d somehow misplaced it. In my other checking account, I had exactly the amount of the ticket with five cents to spare. It wouldn’t be cool to leave my main account with a balance of a nickel so I decided to transfer some funds into that account from a separate account called “Writing.” After all, the airline ticket was going to carry me to a writing conference. So, I went to purchase the online ticket a second time, about ten minutes after I transferred the funds. After I pressed SUBMIT, it told me I had insufficient funds. So, the purchase did not go through. I didn’t understand. Even if the money didn’t transfer over (which my bank statement showed it did), well I still had a nickel to spare.
I decided to physically go to my bank and transfer the funds from a third rarely-used emergency account. I was thinking about my flight and not my “road trip,” which is probably why I tripped over the uneven sidewalk. I could feel myself going down in slow mo. One hand, the other, one knee, the other. Bam! I saw the yellow leaves close-up. So at least I got some color into my fall. I fell hard– spread eagle on my front. It took me a full fifteen or twenty seconds to find the strength to get up. A lady on the side street pulled over and got out of her van. “Are you all right, dear?” Marie! I love living in a small town because people you know and who know your situation stop to check on you.
“Silly. I should have been using my cane.” Reminder 479 to take my cane, even for quick errands.
“Do you live nearby?”
Whoops! That’s not Marie. She knew exactly where I lived! And I knew where she lived. Right around the corner and down the street from my family for our whole lives.
“Yeah, I do.”
She didn’t want to leave me lying there. I quickly assessed any damage done.
Debit: 2 smarting palms
2 smarting kneecaps
1 missing shoe
Credit: 0 pieces of gravel embedded in palms
0 cracked skull = no concussion
1 shoe, relocated
0 tears in my favorite blue jeans
1 kind woman waiting to see if I were okay
1 sunshiney day
Which reminded me to stand up and prove I was just fine. Only I wasn’t. But my pride wouldn’t let her see I was aching. I don’t bounce back from these falls as well as I used to for some reason.
Once convinced I was none the worse for my wear, the lady drove on and I hobbled on to the bank.
There I met my favorite teller, and asked her about the transfer. She looked confused, too. “The Internet transfers should be instantaneous. Maybe you have to wait a couple of minutes for them to transfer?” She gave me an understanding smile, and I instantly felt better.
Credit: 1 thoughtful and understanding smile
I completed my physical bank transaction and walked back home—on the other side of the road to be safe. About a block from my house, I stumbled again. I took two or three steps forward and went down, again tripping on the uneven sidewalk.
Debit: 2 sore knee caps
2 smarting palms
1 shoe flying off
2 unconcerned teenagers walking home from school
Credit: 0 tears in my favorite jeans
0 pieces of gravel in my palms
The teenagers must have thought I was one of them!
Somehow I made it home. My right knee throbbed, and was bleeding but, again, no ripped pants so after cleaning it with a wet washcloth, I went about my business. Mom gave me a loving hug.
Credit: Eighty-three year-old hugs value a lot
I attempted to purchase my ticket three more times, with small glitches each time. Frustrated, I called my dearest church friend and asked her to pray for me.
Credit: prayers on my behalf
Then, the mail came. I received a belated birthday card from a close friend. It said, “You are cherished.”
Credit: the sentiment of a close friend.
Later, I talked to another friend who gave me advice: “From a business stand-point, it doesn’t make sense.”
Credit: business know-how (no-how!)
I’d planned to attend this Christian writer’s conference for a whole year. I never doubted I’d go. But could it be that it wasn’t God’s timing and just my selfish desire? I weighed in on my friend’s advice, things going on with my family and my time and financial constraints. Things were not coming together this year in the way I thought they would. I ended up canceling the flight and asking for my registration cost back. I felt God was telling me to wait.
When I examined the debits and credits of my entire day, I realized the credits by far outweighed the debits.
The things that matter: compassionate smiles, loving hugs (even at 52, are so comforting), prayers on my behalf, reaffirmation of friendships and advice, and God’s voice penetrating my confusion.
Bruised egos, and bruised and bleeding body parts will disappear. I will learn my lesson and take my cane so that I will not need reminder 480. God is so very good to me. Just before I sleep, I remembered to thank Him for the many credits He had deposited in my life account that day.