"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
James 1:2-4

The Gilland Family of 6!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Be Still...Part 1 of 2...

I pray all the time for my children to have teachable spirits and that we would have lots of teachable moments in their lives.  I so want them to “get it” before they leave our nest.  I often forget to pray that I would have a teachable spirit and that I would learn quickly the lessons the Lord would have me to.  Unfortunately, I’m not always a quick learner!  I sometimes have to experience the lesson for myself.  In fact, I feel like that happens more often than not.  The story I’m going to share is one that changed me forever.  This time in my life was very difficult and probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to walk through.  But God is so good and so gracious, even in the midst of disaster.  This is a story of pain, patience and peace!

It was Saturday, November 11, 2006.  I was 28 weeks pregnant with my second child, Mary Mac.  George was 14 months old.  We were truly at a wonderful place in life.  Our marriage was wonderful.  Our finances were securely in order.  We had great friends.  We loved our church.  We had just bought a new house and we were in the process of a total renovation.   My in-laws were in town helping us to pack up.  That morning George, my mother-in-law and I had been to Sam’s to load up on packing tape and bubble wrap.  We had a full day of packing ahead of us.  Doug and his dad had spent the morning working at the new house.  Life was great!

We were all back at home, to eat lunch I guess I really can’t remember.   I walked outside to our carport to throw some old magazines away.  As I turned to come back toward the door something horrible and totally unexpected happened!  I slipped and fell.  I immediately knew something was really wrong.  My right leg was in tremendous pain.  I have never been in that kind of pain in my life and I have delivered 3 babies one of which I had with no drugs!  Nothing comes close to that pain!  I remember laying there praying…”Oh God, no, please no don’t let this be bad.  Please let me be okay!!!”

After hearing me scream, Doug came running, then his mom.  Thankfully Doug’s mom is a nurse.  I remember how calm and in control she seemed.  This made me a little less anxious.  Doug was not so calm, bless his heart.  He didn’t know what to do!  He called 911 and almost immediately the ambulance was at our home.  They had to cut my favorite maternity jeans to have a better look at my leg.  You could tell by the look on the paramedics faces that it was bad.  But we had no idea how bad it really was!

The ride in the ambulance was excruciating.  I had no medication for the pain.  I felt every tiny bump in the road, every stop and go, every turn.  It was torture.  I was in such pain that I couldn’t think beyond the pain.  I couldn’t even mutter up the words to pray.  All I could do was call on the name of Jesus! 
“Jesus…I need you!” 
“Jesus…help me!”

After finally arriving at the hospital, my leg was x-rayed.  We were all shocked to hear that I had badly broken my femur.  Yes, the largest bone in my body had broken and splintered into 3 pieces.  I would have to undergo surgery.  This was the only option.   I was so worried about the baby.  How could I have surgery?  I was 28 weeks pregnant!  Doug and I prayed and had so many others praying for us.  Many Obgyn’s were consulted.  They all said the same thing…the baby would be fine!  We truly experienced “the peace that passes all understanding”!  So surgery was scheduled for the following morning.

On Sunday, November 12 I underwent major surgery on my right femur bone.  They inserted a 10 inch metal plate, 12 screws and a pin in my knee.  It was a successful surgery!  Praise God!  I have a beautiful 10 inch scar on front of my thigh to show for it!  Now came the hard part.  I didn’t really understand what was going to happen next.  I thought for sure there would be some rehab but that was about all I thought.  When the reality of my future set in it was totally devastating to me.  I would be in a wheel chair at first, then move to a walker and then later to a cane.  I probably wouldn’t walk again for about 4 months, when Mary Mac was 6 weeks old.  It was way more than I could bear!  I wept and wept and wept some more. 

What was all the crying for?  For many reasons.  Life as I knew it was over, at least for about 4 months.  That is a long time!  I don’t like to sit.  I like to busy around my house.  I like to go and do.  I was about to have to be really still for about 4 months.  I was going to be totally dependent on others for everything!  That scared me.  Also, my life as the primary caregiver to my precious son was suddenly gone.  And that all but killed me!  I didn’t understand why this had happened.  I knew it was a crazy accident, but I also knew that my God could have stopped it at any time.  But he didn’t.  He allowed it to happen, which created a perfect opportunity for my faith to grow in ways I would have never experienced had I never fallen!  So what were the lessons?  We’ll get to that!

I know right now you are thinking, “and so she begins to get better.”  Wrong, well not yet!  Because of the stress and trauma of the fall and surgery my body went into preterm labor.  I was given many drugs to stop labor.  She was given steroids to mature her lungs in the event they could not stop labor.  We prayed and literally had hundreds of people praying all over the world.  People that didn’t even know me were lifting us up to the great physician!  Y’all have heard me say it before and I’ll say it again.  There is unbelievable power in prayer.  When God’s people call out to Him…He answers!  This time was no different.  The labor stopped and we were able to go home after being in the hospital for only one week.   Thank you, Lord!

This is getting long, so I’m going to stop here.  The story will continue when we get home and the healing begins.  Look for part 2 in a few days! 



  1. OK, enough! When are you going to finish this? I think I've seen the scar on your leg but I did not know this story!! Can't wait to hear more!

  2. Wow, sweet Ashley, I remember this so well. I can't believe it's been 5 years since that happened. Hope you're well, and can't wait to see baby Jack.