Rainbow in Maui to represent miracles

“Miracles happen everyday, change your perception of what a miracle is and you’ll see them all around you.” 

~Jon Bon Jovi     

I have just returned from a remarkable week of healing and transformation in Maui. The beginning of our vacation started with a bang – literally. At 2am the morning we were leaving, I heard a terrifying sound and minutes later received a call from my daughter that she had fallen asleep while driving home and hit a tree. When I arrived at the scene just up the street from our house, I found the car on the other side of the street in a neighbor’s yard, having caused devastation to a grove of palm trees and ending up one inch from a concrete wall. In fact the car had actually hit eight to ten palm trees and a street sign and my daughter did not wake until the air bags deployed when the car stopped. She was traumatized and banged up, but was miraculously okay.

Seeing the devastation and the fact that her car travelled down a hill, crossed traffic, hit a tree limb at the corner of the concrete wall that redirected her down the sidewalk and side yard one inch from the wall with her car stopping before a large palm tree took my breath away. It was truly a miracle that she was alive and mostly unharmed. I moved right into crisis management mode, a strategy I am highly skilled at after supporting my daughter for many years when she had chronic health challenges. There was so much adrenaline pumping through my body that I could not figure out how to exchange information with the home owner who’s side yard now looked like a hurricane had hit it.

And all this less than three hours before we were to leave for the airport for a family vacation to Hawaii. We took our daughter home, assessed that she was okay, made the insurance report, coordinated the tow truck, and went back to clear out the car. When we arrived the police were there to take a report since she knocked down a street sign. Everyone was so kind, compassionate, and grateful that our daughter was alive – the police, the neighbors who heard the noise and were first on the scene, and the owners of the trees that saved our daughter’s life – everyone we interacted with that night. I recognized so many miracles in the midst of this profoundly stressful and challenging time even as my legs shook due to the trauma.

Remarkably more miracles continued to unfold including finding out that we had enough insurance coverage to pay for the trees to be replanted and new landscaping, and that the insurance company would coordinate the yard being cleared up while we were away. We also identified that we had gap insurance so that if the car was deemed totaled and we owed more than the insurance company assessed the car’s value, we would not owe more money. It seemed a total miracle that in just a few hours we were able to clear out the car, find our daughter’s computer and charger buried in the trunk, and arrange all the details around the accident before catching an Uber at 5am for the airport.

My daughter being alive would have been miracle enough, but the miracles continued to show up. We were blessed to all sit together during the long flight in the exit row so that my daughter could stretch out her injured knee and her sister could be next to her nurturing her throughout the flight. Another miracles was that we made it through security in time to catch our flight when the line was out the door of the airport when we arrived. My daughter slept in the Uber, in the airport, on the plane, and for the first 24 hours in Maui, which all seemed like a miracle as we knew sleep was what she most desperately needed to heal.

We started a list of miracles and became miracle hunters on the vacation. We recognized kindness as miracles, beauty as miracles, sunrises and sunsets as miracles. We embraced Albert Einstein’s quote, “There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.” We chose to live as if everything was a miracle and felt blessed and deeply grateful as a result. 

Near death experiences often bring a new found appreciation for life. For me, focusing on the miracles unfolding around me has allowed me to act from love rather than fear. The anxiety of what could have happened to her continues to live within me and I am working to integrate my profound gratitude that is she is alive with the recognition that indeed it is a miracle that she is not dead or terribly insured. 

She has almost died several times in her life since her birth and I have never taken her life for granted, but this feels different. There is a randomness to accidents that can be unsettling. When we went to check in with and thank the neighbor who was so kind and understanding to us about his side yard, he told us that his 16 year old daughter had been killed in a car accident and so he understood how difficult this was. We were blown away, deeply saddened for his loss, and totally inspired by his deep compassion and kindness to us.

As the Dalai Lama reminds us, “be unnecessarily kind as you never know what battle someone else is facing.” This reminds me that the fact that we are all walking around on this planet with all the challenges we face is an absolute miracle. Our bodies in and of themselves are miracles. Our resilience is an absolute miracle. 

What miracle would you add to my list?

What might your life be like if you recognized all the miracles already present in your life? 

Please share the miracles you have witnessed in the comments below so that we can all become miracle hunters spreading love, gratitude and blessings in the world.

May you find peace and joy while hunting miracles and continue nurturing peace in the world from the inside out!

Kelley Grimes

Sending you so much peace, love and gratitude,

Kelley Grimes, M.S.W.
Counselor, Author & Speaker

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Join the discussion 20 Comments

  • Leila says:

    I am so happy your daughter is going fine and you had an amazing vacation. Life is full of miracles and many we take for granted. When our perception changes we see the little yet precious things around us.

    • I love how you identified the little yet precious things around us as miracles. Thank you so much for your kindness Leila!

    • Elizabeth Cortez says:

      Thank you for sharing and inspiring us all. It’s a blessing that your daughter is safe and sound after her ordeal.
      One of my greatest miracles is seeing my two sons, whom I prayed for long before they were born. They are my answered prayers, my miracles to believe in something greater than myself.

  • LeAnn Lyon says:

    Dearest Kelley
    I am grateful for the miracles your family experienced and recognized! Like you, we came close to losing our youngest daughter to a random boating accident 7 years ago this Labor Day. She had terrible injuries to her abdomen and all of the muscles. Six weeks later she was back to doing cartwheels and six months later earned first place in the State gymnastics competition.
    Miracles are indeed all around us, every day. It does not take trauma or injury to find them. Indeed every sunrise, every green light, and even a red light may be a miracle you don’t even know is happening.
    God bless you, your daughter, your family!

  • I had chills reading your article Kelley. What a miracle you daughter is safe and that everyone conspired in these miracles. Your neighbor having lost their 16 year old must have been understandably shaken. I lost my 21 year old son when he was a passenger in a car accident – I will never forget the call we received to inform us. Thank you for sharing your miracles. I am so very happy your daughter is safe, loved and protected. Blissed Blessings to you and your family.

    • Oh Debra my heart goes out to you and I am so deeply grateful for your kindness and loving comment. Thank you so much for your comment. I am sending you love and compassion.

      • Susan Allen says:

        Kelley, Every day is a gift and a miracle. Even the most difficult ones. I’ve learned to take nothing for granted. As they say, count your blessings and watch them multiply. So glad that your daughter is o.k. Warmly, Susan Allen

  • Heather says:

    WOW what a story, it about had me in tears. I’m so glad she is ok. It reminded me of an accident I had during winter about 2 or so yrs ago. A car hit me from the back side and I went flying across the freeway full of cars, my car spun around and I was staring straight in in the eyes of a semi truck. I kept focusing and praying to keep control of the car the best I could. I wound up partially in a ditch before the semi could have hit me head on. I know my angels were with me that day. You are right. So many Miracles little to large. Always keep the faith. And what you said fits perfectly today on my thoughts. “be unnecessarily kind as you never know what battle someone else is facing”

    • Thank you so much Heather for your support and sharing your miraculous story. What a remarkable adventure we are on in these human bodies and I am grateful for the amazing support system I continue to nurture my resilience.

  • I’m happy your daughter is safe Kelley. As my mechanic keeps telling me, he can fix the car but life is more precious. I’ve experienced miracles in my day to day life too and am grateful for them. The most recent, which also involves a car 🙂 happened last week while I was driving home from an out of town day trip. There had been heavy rain and part of the road had developed holes (this was the country road stretch). I managed to drive carefully through a water logged road but must have hit something because the mud guard rubber below the bonnet of my car got loose.

    The next day was a national holiday but the following day when I went to the mechanic for what seemed to have been a minor repair, it turned out the entire protecting shield under the bonnet had come undone!

    It was a miracle that I had driven almost 45 kms with a hanging shield through water and reached home safely without the engine or other parts getting damaged! Everything was fixed within an hour.

  • Tanya Thompson says:

    Kelley

    What a miracle. Thank you for writing about such a traumatic event. I love how your family became miracle hunters. It has reminded me to do the same. I try to be a gratitude guardian but I should add miracle hunter. I’ve always felt that nearly missed accidents in my life were guided by a divine hand. Small ones like walking down the street not seeing something until the last minute and nearly missing running into them. Or in the car at an intersection or backing out of a driveway and not seeing another car until the last minute. I would always take a moment to give thanks as it was like an angel was there to guide me with a nudge or a tap on the shoulder. I could see those angels in your daughter’s story too. So thank you for reframing this thinking to call them miracles. I’ll hunt for more now! What a beautiful way to be.

    Much love to you and Tony and the family
    Tanya

  • Mary says:

    Kelley,
    I am so glad your daughter is ok! Earlier this year a drunk driver on Xanax ran a red light in the morning as I took my brother to a cardiology appointment. It totaled both our cars….and was a horrible sight! Had she not turned her steering wheel I don’t think I would be here now. She was arrested on 2 felony charges. I forgive her and pray for her because maybe I was her “Rock Bottom” and she can now turn her life around. I am willing to advocate for her healing when her court date arrives. I am so blessed to be ok along with my brother and this experience has made me so grateful for so much! She was under insured but I had coverage for that. I see the miracles of each day….When I was in Pasadena, someone asked where I was from and when I said Monterey Bay they said how lucky I was to live there. I’ve taken that for granted but now I really see all the beauty and miracles my home gifts me with! Thank you for sharing your insights and wisdom!

    • Wow what an amazing story Mary! Thank you so much for sharing it and your wisdom and insights. I am so glad you and your brother are okay and I know what you mean about the experience making you grateful for so much. I am inspired to “stay awake” to the miracles around me and it sounds like you are too!

  • Kim Lande says:

    Oh Kelley, thank you for sharing this profoundly difficult accident and turning it on its head to be a miracle for your family. You are a miracle to me and how we found each other through Hands of Peace is a miracle, as is your entire family — Fiona, Zoey and Tony — all miraculous rays of light and beauty. Love you, my friend. Thank you for sharing from the heart.

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