I heard at least one person was killed in the tractor trailer accident that shut down a stretch of I-24 just west of Chattanooga yesterday. The family and friends of this unknown motorist found their lives changed forever. The rest of us, stuck in traffic for more than five hours? We were simply inconvenienced, although at the time it could have felt like the end of the world if one allowed it to.
As I sat in my car, trying to get from Nashville to Atlanta, I saw all ages of adults getting in and out of their own vehicles; staring in the distance, chatting with each other, and in general looking resigned. A few of them took their dogs out for walks and bathroom breaks. A couple of small children were led by hand along the side of the road, and at least one baby was in his father’s arms.
I spent my time texting, looking at social media, reading through the Kindle app on my phone, and finally going to Netflix. Then I heard cheers and engines cranked to life and we were on our way.
When there’s nothing you can do, you either go mad or go Zen. You stress yourself out resisting the situation, or accept what is.
Someone died. The rest of us were slowed down.
Perspective is healthy.