Saturday night, I fell asleep around ten, satisfied and comfortable. I’d stayed up too late Friday with a good book, so I relished the rest. A familiar ding erupted from my phone at 11:25, startling my sleep. A text? Who is texting me right now? I didn’t get up to check until it dinged a second time. Guess I forgot to put the phone in night mode.

The text came from my sister. “My water just broke. You should drive here soon.” What? I live an hour and a half away. How serious could this be at 11:30 on a Saturday night, one week early!? No one in our family has ever had an early baby. I debated the options in my mind during a hurried text conversation. How often are the contractions coming? I decided to head to the hospital. Sleep wasn’t worth missing the birth of my first niece. I roused my husband enough to explain. I’m leaving.

I left at midnight, on the nose. My city looked like a ghost town. I zoomed down the state highway hitting all green lights. I can never make it across town this fast! I felt very alive, leaving the window open so that the cool night air whipped my hair, even as I merged onto the interstate. I sang goofy, old songs at the top of my lungs, laughing at myself. As I left the city, the reflectors faded into dim white lines only visible a few feet at a time. Seventy miles per hour seems ridiculously fast to hurdle blindly through the darkness. I felt a tendril of fear choke my breath.

God has been working on my trust.

The highway became my perfect analogy. So much potential for deadly disaster flying through the inky, black night.  I imagined screeching my tires to avoid a confused deer. In my mind, I could see my car flipping over and over to land face down in the ditch, changing my life in a second, forever. I shivered. Later, I passed a wrecked car, a shaken man standing on the shoulder, speaking to a policeman. That could have been me.

lost_highway

But tonight, it wasn’t me. I could trust the faded white lines. Sometimes they curved out of sight too quickly. Sometimes the darkness threatened to envelop me whole, with no headlights or taillights on the horizon. But it didn’t. And although I don’t understand why or how these things work, I trust in my good God. And I will trust him, even if my life doesn’t work out the way I hope. Even if my car arcs off the pavement. Trust brings us through the dark nights. Morning always comes.

I made it to the hospital without any trouble. In the early morning, I found myself cradling my beautiful, new niece. Amazing how much I can love someone I just met.