tobi’s glance

Glance Event - A bright new dayLife is so amazing sometimes. And unexpected. We don’t always know why the road turns like it does, but it does. And in a moment, everything can change. And for me, it was one of those, this only happens in movies moments.

I woke up mid-air, flying across my bedroom. I landed on the other side of my bed and out the window I saw what I thought was a nuclear bomb. But it wasn’t. It was a gas pipeline explosion, just 200 yards from my bed. I didn’t know what a gas pipeline was, let alone realized that a gas line that fed the entire east coast sat right next to my bedroom. But it did. And it blew up.

What happened after was simple. I gained enough composure to get myself together and leave. I had to run because my car was on fire and I watched my tires melt onto the ground. I ran and left. And so did 1,000 other people.  (Wanna see what I’m talking about? Click here to see the video.)

The next morning, I found out that I was homeless. I had nothing but the clothes on my back. And my 2 cats. And $125.

I’m taking this opportunity to glance back because that moment taught me so much.

  • I’m Strong: It taught me that I had courage that I didn’t know about. I saved my own life. And it changed me forever.
  • I’m Brave: If someone would have told me that would happen, I would have guessed that I’d cower in fear. But when faced with a 200 ft. fire standing in front of me, I took charge. And it changed me forever.
  • I’m Independent: I didn’t need to rely on anyone. I only had me to lean on and I did what I needed to do. And it changed me forever.
  • I’m Changed: Forever.

We have options in life. When faced with adversity, we have the opportunity to face fear head on or to allow it to win. I suffered from depression for years that followed that incident and lived with PTSD for nearly 10 years. It’s almost 22 years later and I’m thankful for the gift of life and that I’ve been able to see how beautiful life is.

For me, glance will honor life. All life. Because I’m thankful to be here.