An epiphany in the making
I had been snowed in for two days.
When the Nor’easter began to ease up Thursday afternoon I went outside and waded through a foot-and-a-half of snow to the snow-covered car in the driveway. I cleared about half the snow from the doors and windshield, got in and tried to rev my way out of the driveway. Not a chance.
I don’t have a snow shovel and at my advanced age I’m too old to shovel anyway. I got chest pains from just clearing half the snow off the car.
There was enough food and booze in the house for another day so I went back inside. Thursday night was another of my insomniac nights, but this time with chest pains. I got through the night but Friday was no letup of an irregular heartbeat and dizziness.
I refrained from calling the doctor because I didn’t want to take the chance of this being serious and him having me admitted to hospital. Hospital at my age during the covid surge is not a good idea for me or the front line workers.
I made no further attempt to get the car out of the driveway. I didn’t call anybody for help, I’m not sure why. I just said to hell with it and stayed inside the rest of the day, struggling with rapid heartbeat and more dizziness, which at this point I figured was more likely an anxiety attack than a serious heart problem.
Normally at this stage of the game I’d take a Xanax and that would calm me right down, but I was all out of Xanax. I drank booze instead — not so beneficial.
The night was a lonely and anxious one. I started reading a new book I had had delivered called ‘Miracles,’ an examination of the supernatural by the Christian writer C.S. Lewis.
I am not a religious person. I started reading C.S. Lewis after the death of my wife two years ago. His book ‘A Grief Observed,’ about the death of his own wife and his anger and disillusionment with God, helped me cope with my own loss more than anything or anybody else could have. It may have stopped me from killing myself.
So there I was late last night beginning to read his ‘Miracles,’ all the while trying to ignore my chest pains.
Not being a ‘believer’ but also not being an agnostic, I put the book down and actually sort of prayed, in my own way. I addressed the prayer to my wife.
“I don’t know where you are, honey, I suspect you’re in oblivion, in other words, you’re nowhere, but in the spirit of this book about miracles and on the miraculous chance that you can hear me, I need a miracle right now to get rid of my chest pains and dizziness and anxiety because at this rate I’m never going to get out of this snowbound house.” Words to that effect.
I went back to reading the book. About fifteen minutes later, at 11 p.m., I heard the revving and scraping of a snowplow in the driveway. I looked out the window and — by god! — some guy was clearing the snow, making a path for my car to get out. It didn’t take him long. And then he drove off into the night.
Just knowing I was no longer trapped by snow and will be able to drive back out to civilization in the morning made me feel immediately better.
There I was, laughing with joy and telling the cat, “By, God, Bella! Susan, God, whoever, just sent us a miracle!”