Wednesday, December 1, 2010

In *Everything* Give Thanks...

So, what did you do for Thanksgiving? I got smashed in the mouth with a softball.

*Laughs slightly* No, really, I did.

See, [begins story mode] our church has this tradition of playing softball on Thanksgiving day. Now, there is something you need to know about us Manns: we only play softball on Thanksgiving day. And last year, I didn't even go. That is to say, we are nearly clueless. Ahem. But, for some reason, my four younger older siblings wanted to go. My parents didn't particularly want to go, so I ended up driving and my parents stayed home along with William and Matthew.

Anyway, we were all out there, valiantly humiliating ourselves for the sake of tradition, with the Manns at least attempting to look like we knew what was going on. We... sort of succeeded. I was in the outfield, where a few of us girls were hoping the ball wouldn't come our way. (Me especially, probably, though I didn't say so out loud. Like some of them did. See, I can catch normal balls alright. But I never catch with a baseball mitt... so yeah.) Heidi (who is good at all sports, it seems.) was moaning about how boring it was. I agreed. At that time. Afterwards I thought it too exciting. She was also saying that if the ball came over she was going to drop to the ground and proceeded to show us how. (Afterwards I wished I would've just done that. :P)

Alas, the ball did come in my direction. So, I made the courageous decision to try to catch it. I moved forward, since I could tell it would drop in front of me if I didn't move. I almost judged it right. Almost! Some people thought I would catch it, even. It was coming closer, closer-- WHAM! On the ground I went. That was rather shocking and confusing. And my whole mouth-- my whole face! Hurt! I couldn't tell what exactly was hit-- all I knew was that I was bleeding at a terrific rate. After a few seconds I realized it was my mouth and then asked the people who had come over whether I still had my teeth. Somehow, at times like that, you realize that teeth are sort of important. [Um, major understatement.] Apparently I did still have teeth. That was a relief. By this point, my whole mouth and both hands were covered in blood and more was pouring out. (Pardon me if you don't like blood. But it's true!) I remember vaguely thinking it might get on my clothes and then recklessly deciding I didn't care a bit. I think I also thought that I would then have a "battle shirt" as the Ursus (friends of ours) call shirts that you've bleed on. Unfortunately I didn't bleed on my shirt. :( Anyways, you will all be happy to know that I didn't cry, scream, or otherwise freak out. What was the use? Even at times like that, practicality rules.

Someone kindly brought water to wash my hands off, and another water bottle (A squirty one!!! You have no idea how awesome those are in such situations!) to wash out my mouth. They also got ice in a plastic white grocery bag, which I promptly started applying. At this point my thoughts were mainly, wow, this happened to me. And, this is going to take awhile... And, I'm glad it isn't worse! I was also praying, of course.

I was sitting against the fence, holding the ice on, and gently exploring my mouth with my tongue. (After this initial exploration, my tongue behaved quite nobly and contained its inquisitiveness. I was very proud of it.)  I thought one of my bottom teeth felt kind of odd. At first I thought it was lose... but then part of it fell off. :P I didn't really care at that point... I was glad my tooth didn't hurt. I was also thankful it wasn't worse-- I mean my front teeth could've been knocked out. One of the elders happened to be there and he prayed for me. Hannah kindly got a soft white T-shirt out of the van to put my ice in. (The bag wasn't exactly comfortable.)

Abby and Daniel, two little children from church, were looking at me so pityingly. It was very cute and almost funny. :)

Someone offered a mirror, but I was like... oh, I'll see it when I get home. But then I started feeling a little curious, so I asked Cheryl to get my purse, and looked at it. It was slightly worse than I'd thought-- I didn't realize my lip was scraped on the top. And when I looked inside... well, good thing I'm not particularly squeamish. See, my front teeth (of course) cut up my lip really bad. Only, one little strand of my lip, instead of breaking, was stuck between two of my top teeth. So my lip was held against my teeth. That was disturbing. After I saw that, I really wanted to get home and fix it. I started formulating a plan to that end.

A friend of ours kindly offered to drive us home (I couldn't really drive and hold the ice on. heh. :P) and someone else followed us and brought her back to the field afterwards. Providentially, she'd already driven our van, so that wasn't an issue. :) Josiah talked to me on the way home (About things other than lips, which was nice of him.) and I sort of mumbled responses through my swollen lip and ice. haha. I noticed that the shirt (one of papa's) was a blood donor shirt. I thought that amusing, even then. :D

We hadn't called our parents because we didn't want them to worry while we were coming home. So I came in with this shirt over my mouth and papa was like, oh no. So I showed him and he was kind of... I don't know how to describe it. I guess sort of concerned, shocked and somewhat worried. Then mama came over and of course she was even MORE like that... by this time I was more myself and so I sort of brushed it off. Eh... if you can brush things like a very swollen and bloody lip and broken tooth off. Anyways, I quickly asked for scissors. Yes, scissors. I then proceeded to do my little surgery quickly (um, after we sterilized the scissors), before I lost the nerve. I cut/pulled the strand till it broke and then flossed what was left out. Thankfully it didn't hurt... much. :P And then I was very relieved. :D

Andrea said I should tell my children that a shark bit my tooth off. haha! I think I will. :D

So, there ya have it. My lip story, as light-hearted as I could make it. (It's okay if you laughed.) So... what does this have to do with thankfulness? Well, you will remember two things: One, the verse this blog is named after says, in part, "in everything give thanks" and, two, that it was Thanksgiving.

So, I wrote a list of things I was thankful for about this whole situation: (I wrote this in my "Major Events" journal while holding the ice on my lip.)

I'm thankful...
  • That it wasn't a front tooth that broke
  • It wasn't my nose or mouth or eye or ear or throat
  • That we had ice and pain medicine and water there
  • For everyone's kindness
  • That the bleeding stopped quickly [otherwise I would've needed stitches. *shudders*]
  • That I didn't cry (haha)
  • That Elizabeth drove us home
  • For Papa's soft shirt
  • For a big van to lie down in 
  • For funny friends
  • That I don't need stitches!
  • That my tooth nerve isn't hurt
  • For Mr. Jackson's prayer
  • For Abby and Daniel's cute concern
  • For Hannah's support in walking to the van
  • For being able to find humor still 
  • For ice packs
  • That I didn't faint
  • That we had Thanksgiving meal yesterday [Wednesday]!
  • That I am young and heal quickly 
  • That God has a reason for this
  • That this is one of my worst injuries.
Now I have even more things to add:

I'm thankful for...
  • Drinking straws
  • People's prayers
  • Herbs which are fun to use and speed up healing
  • The speed at which it has healed
  • The ability to smile without pain
  • The ability to talk freely 
  • Being able to eat solid food 
  • Emily and Hannah making me smoothies when I couldn't eat normal food
  • Our new vitamix to make the smoothies in 
  • The pain going away so quickly (it only lasted two/three days!!) 
  • Being able to "camp" still, at our friend's house (though I did sleep in the house. haha.) 
  • Being able to sleep some that first night... 
  • The patience and other lessons learned
  • God's grace in that I'm not very worried about how it looks/will look
  • Vitamin E and aloe and goldenseal
  • Whistling (even though I can't yet.)
Well! I could probably continue for awhile longer, but this is already really long. (for me) (I hope you two are happy. You know who you are, my long winded blogging friends. ;))

Anyways, the point is this... I wanted to tell you the story. hehe. Okay, well, that was part of it. But I mainly wanted to encourage you all to look for those things that you can still be thankful for even in the midst of hard situations.

P.S. Softballs are NOT soft.


  1. Haha! I was hoping it was this story. :)

    I did laugh. Of course. It was funny. Sort of. Parts were not. I felt sorry for you. :(

    But yes, gratitude is the key to having peace and joy in times like that. That is the weapon that fends off the attacks of the indignant flesh.

    Hehe... 'indignant flesh.' That conjures up some interesting images. Fodder for writing, that.

    Anyways. Thanks for the post. And I am grateful that your lip is tons better (and that you won't get scars). ;)

  2. After a few seconds I realized it was my mouth and then asked the people who had come over whether I still had my teeth. Somehow, at times like that, you realize that teeth are sort of important."

    That made me laugh. Really hard. Out loud.

    I'm glad you didn't cry.

  3. Dear Carissa,

    Thank you for sharing what you learned. I especially liked...

    "Anyways, you will all be happy to know that I didn't cry, scream, or otherwise freak out. What was the use? Even at times like that, practicality rules."

    I can see Juliet reacting the same. :) Great practice for when you have a child come to you all bloody because of a cut in their head. Which Mr. Lauser did to his Mom. :) He did end up needing stitches for it.

    I am thankful that you are recovering quickly, God is good.

    God Bless,
    Mrs. Mama Lauser

  4. Jay: Really? That's funny. :)

    Good. :D Yeah... even thought it's kinda funny, it did hurt.

    Yup, that's right!

    Hehe. :D Indeed it does.

    You're welcome! Me too. (Well we can definitely hope it won't scar. Probably it won't though, with the vitamin E. ;)

    Rebeka Hahaha, good. :D

    Thank you. I wouldn't want to have my own daughter ashamed of me.

    Mrs. Mama Lauser

    You're welcome!

    Haha. :D

    Yup, I can see her doing that too. :) Haha, yup! Though of course I think I'd prefer that my babies didn't come to me like that. :P

    Me too!! Yes, He is. :D


  5. Even though I heard the story in beautiful first person, I was happy to read it here too! I'm thanking God for *you* today, for your great attitude and MATURITY in Him. I'm thanking Him for His protection of you.

    You can work on a battle shirt another day. Or not. :)

    Love you sweetie.
    Mrs Ursu

  6. Aw, thanks. :) I think this is the fullest version I have done so far... even the one in my journal didn't have as much detail. :) Thank you, I'm glad for what God has taught me so far. :) I'm thanking Him for His protection too! It could've been so much worse, and it's healed SO fast. It already looks much better than when you saw it last!

    Hehe, right. ;)

    Love you too,

  7. Among all ths bliss how is your tooth? how much broke off?

  8. Haha... it's doing alright. It's a tad sensitive to cold, but otherwise doesn't cause me trouble. :) About... one third I think. Something like that. Now it looks like I have a short tooth. Also a little bit of another tooth chipped off. But that's barely noticeable. :)