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The Deadly Fall

On January 12, 2000, our family saw a miracle of God! We were then in the process of building our new house; my husband and I did all the contracting ourselves, so therefore, we were at our house site "daily" for 6 months! On this particular evening, Eric (my husband), myself and Ericka (our 4 year old little girl) were all on the second floor of the house doing our normal clean-up duties. {Our 11-year-old son, Corey, was playing with a neighborhood friend.} During the process of these cleaning duties, we were sweeping with the wide "push" broom, vacuuming the sawdust, and picking up scrap 2x4's. Eric and Ericka were in Ericka's bedroom doing the sweeping and vacuuming (Eric doing whichever one Ericka had not wanted to do at the moment), and I was about 5 feet away in the "balcony" area picking up the wood remnants. As I bent over to pick up another piece of wood, I heard this "PING". You have to realize that this was just at a time the Shop Vac was not running! I knew! this sounded just like a broom handle hitting the concrete slab 12 feet below us, but I didn't know why. I ran to the edge of the balcony and saw my baby Ericka unconscious on the concrete slab! {Later we concluded that Ericka had been pushing the push broom and backed off the edge, in between the studs of the wall, which are 12 inches apart.} As I looked over, I screamed and flew down the stairs. As I turned the corner, Eric had jumped that 12 feet from the balcony to little Ericka's rescue. He was trying to wake her. After a seemingly eternity, my baby opened her eyes, but they were both fixed in an upper left position (first sign of head trauma)! Her head just seemed to be as a newborn with no neck control! I was in total shock! I could not speak; I grabbed her from him and just held her close. Eric ran to get the car, once on our long ride to the hospital, Eric was asking Ericka all sorts of questions, to check her mentality and awareness of her surroundings. S! he knew her name and would answer yes or no questions with yes ma'am to Eric and say, "I mean yes sir" in between her cries. After some time, she asked Eric to sing Jesus Loves Me, I began crying harder and Eric started singing it to her....he broke at one point and she finished the line! Looking back, Ericka was quite alert just a few minutes after her fall. {It just seemed like eternity to us parents!}

Once at the hospital, Ericka began vomiting (second sign of head trauma). They took us immediately to begin IV's, x-rays, CT scans, MRIí s, etc. They determined the right side of her head is where she landed onto the concrete slab! At this point, she had a nosebleed, only from the right nostril...we panicked once again. After all the tests were completed, hours later, she only had a MINOR CONCUSSION! During this evening, a nurse made a comment to me after the test results: "You know, children are so resilient." I explained to her that yes, this is true regarding some things, but God and only God carried my baby down 12 feet to the concrete she could have shattered on to! --- I know of a toddler that fell from its crib (about 3 feet) to the carpet floor and is BLIND today! Yes, children are resilient, but let's be realistic, it was a deadly fall!

We were so very blessed to have so many relatives, friends and a wonderful church family surrounding us at this time. E-mail allowed the prayer chains to begin so quickly!

Eric and I have always been convinced that this was a grand miracle of God! First of all, the push broom is over 24 inches wide, it had to fall just right to get in between the 12 inch space from stud to stud....hearing the "PING" to notify us something was wrong, just at a time the Shop Vac was off. Secondly, the fact that the doctor said that where she hit her head, the mere cartilage on the top of her right ear, cushioned the blow enough to save her life! Thirdly, as we returned to the house site 5 days later, we went upstairs and saw that the rail on the balcony that Eric jumped over was cracked horizontally the length of the board and we realized yet again how God's hand was on all of us!

We praise God for His blessings during this time and pray he will continue to touch her in His special way!

by Kristi W. Griffin
Used with Permission