As I described in my last post, life was going great, and our family had an amazing future planned out to make it even better.

But then came the day that changed everything.

One morning, on his way to work, Jimmy got into a bad car wreck.

It wasn’t his fault; someone braked suddenly for a deer running across the highway and caused several car pile-ups. Jimmy’s car was somewhere in the middle.

Jimmy called me from the hospital, explaining what had happened. He was surprisingly calm, because the doctors had given him some painkillers and muscle relaxers.

Luckily, he had no major injuries, just some nasty cuts on his forehead and cheek where glass from the windshield has shattered and cut his face. The doctors said he was extremely lucky that the glass hadn’t gone into his eyes, and that, if he hadn’t been wearing his seatbelt, he probably wouldn’t be launched through the windshield and been seriously injured or killed.

When he called, I had been just about to leave to drop Emerson off at daycare and then head into the bakery. I was bawling, panicked and horrified, even though Jimmy assured me he was okay. It just shook me to realize how close we had come to our family being changed forever, to losing Jimmy, the most important person in the world to me (besides Emerson).

I put Emerson in his car seat and raced to the hospital, calling into work and breathlessly explaining why I wouldn’t be able to come into work that day. They were very understanding, but I could barely process what my boss was saying because I was so preoccupied with worries about Jimmy.

I didn’t feel better until I got to the hospital and saw Jimmy for myself. He seemed well, propped up in a hospital bed, with stitches already in place on his face. He was very relaxed, and the doctors explained they had him on morphine for the pain from the whole ordeal.

The doctor gave me a few prescriptions for Jimmy; one for an antibiotic cream to rub on his stitches while they healed to prevent infection, one for painkillers and one for muscle relaxers. She warned me sternly that Jimmy was only to take the pills as needed, and as soon as he started feeling better, to switch to over the counter medication to handle any discomfort.

She said painkillers and muscle relaxers were highly controlled substances because they were very addictive and would lose efficacy if over-used. I was sure it wouldn’t be a problem and barely heard her, ready to get my family home and safe.

We stopped on the way home to fill his prescriptions and get a few things for dinner. I made Jimmy’s favorite soup and doted on him. I washed his cuts and lovingly rubbed the cream into them. I dispensed his medication and stocked up on his favorite juice to wash it down.

I thought as soon as Jimmy got better, things would go back to normal, and our family would be back on track.

If only I’d known what would happen next.