It's Tuesday. So this morning we went to Bible study - because it's Tuesday, and that's what we do on Tuesdays.
And then we made plans to meet friends at Mazzio's because it's Tuesday, and that's what we do on Tuesdays.
So, we were tootling along on a rural highway between what #2 calls "the Tuesday church" and Mazzios. It was raining lightly. #2 was talking about garage doors, as usual. #3 was dozing in his car seat, as usual. #4 was screaming, as usual because he doesn't like the car...yet (she says with great faith). I was settling in for the 15 minutes trek and tuning #4 out and just as I turned on some Hillsong there was a great pop and much jiggling.
We got pulled over onto the side of the highway and discovered that the left wheel tire had blown out. Our friends saw us pull over and turned around - I sent them on to Mazzio's knowing that I wouldn't be going to Mazzio's because I'd be going to Hibdon's Tires by way of McDonald's after I figured who was going to come help change this tire because the lug nuts were put on with a speed wrench, so there was no way I could get them broken loose without more leverage. I'm not Olive Oyl, but I'm not Wonder Woman either (but #2 would really get a kick out of an invisible plane). So, after I surveyed the damage, I sat back down in my seat and did the only logical thing any woman stuck on the highway with an inquisitive boy, a sleepy toddler, and a screaming newborn would do - I prayed.
When I opened my eyes, I realized that I could see my brother-in-law's driveway - and his truck was in it. I flipped through my numbers on my cell phone and found his - praying that was the right number, I dialed and he answered (ya'll don't know what a miracle that was) and he promised to come to my rescue - though tire-changing isn't his forte - he's a carpenter, not a mechanic.
As I hung up, a beat up brown car pulled up behind me. I didn't panic, but there was a rough-looking guy in it, and I was pretty much in the middle of nowhere. I got back out. He walked up and said, "Gotta jack?" I took the Grand Caravan-specific tools out of the tire well and handed them over. Uncle Matt (my BIL) pulled up behind us, so I felt safer and went to figure out how to get to the spare down. (Do you know where the spare is in your minivan?)
About that time, I realized that #4 was still screaming and I was wearing the wrap I had been carrying him at the church. I pulled him out of his car seat and tucked him back into the wrap. #3 was sound asleep, slumped over in his car seat. #2 was asking questions faster than I could answer them, but at least he was obeying me and staying in his booster seat.
The tire was successfully changed. I thanked the rough-looking mechanic-angel and Uncle Matt, stowed all the tools and buckled #4 back in (screaming ensued).
I called the Bookworm King at that point to tell him the story and ask him to call ahead to Hibdon's, explain my situation and ask them to please put me (and my three monkeys) on the waiting list then in order to shorten our wait. We went through the drive-through at McDonald's to get some lunch (because my sweet wild boys do sit somewhat still long enough to eat - particularly if chicken nuggets and French fries are involved). I called my dad (a mechanic) to learn something about tires so that I wouldn't get jipped at the tire place. Then we drove past the Hibdon's to go though another drive-through at another McDonald's because the first McDonald's forgot the straws and the thought of a 15 month old trying to drink milk out of an open cup in my nice new double stroller was rather unpleasant. #4 was still screaming.
Upon arrival at Hibdon's, I tucked #4 into the wrap again and moved #3 to the front of the double stroller and went over the rules with #2. We walked in and the girl behind the counter announced that we were next on the list. She knew right who we were - I guess that there aren't that many women who bring all their babies to the tire store. We settled down in the chairs and stroller to enjoy our clown food.
Just as we were finishing up and I was starting to wonder just how much good behavior #2 had in him, #2 ran to the door shouting, "GRAMPA!" My father had come to my rescue. Entertainment taken care of - he took #2 out to watch them fix the van. #3 was happy with his French fries (rare treat) and #3 drank a bottle and fell asleep. The van was fixed in half the time the girl at the counter had estimated, and the cost was half of Grampa's estimate.
So, even though I have been particularly mad at God, He sent three men to help me today - my father, who my boys adore and is usually willing to help, Uncle Matt (who doesn't often help anyone for free), and the Mechanic-Angel, who I'd love to thank, but I don't know his name.
I'm so thankful that my God is far more faithful than I am.