flat tire

Exactly a year ago my husband Bob and I spent a week in Utah for both family and business purposes. We flew to Salt Lake, then rented a car close to my brothers’ home in Bountiful, about 30 minutes from the airport. Their son volunteered to take us back to the airport when it was time to fly home.

It was one of those blazing, nearly 100 degree Utah days in late August, and we had just commented on how grateful we were for the air conditioning when we heard the unmistakable thud-thud-thud-thud-thud of a flat tire. We were about two miles from the terminal.

The highway to the Salt Lake City International airport is heavily traveled, with several one-way lanes headed each direction that are divided by a median. He quickly pulled over to the far right and stopped the car. We hopped out, and sure enough, we had a very flat tire.

We checked the time and were grateful we’d left an extra hour. We were going to need it! He opened the trunk and took out our suit cases, then got out the jack and went to work. The jack, however, simply would not support the car. He tried again and again, then remembered that at some point in time, they had borrowed the jack for this car for another car, and must not have switched it back, thinking the one we had would work equally well.

My nephew called his Mom for help, and she promised to be there soon as she could. In the meantime, however, we still needed to get to the airport. There was no way for her to get to us and still get to the airport in time for our flight.

Now, if you saw a car on the side of the road about a mile from the airport, with the trunk open, the car jack lying there, several suitcases by the car, and three adults looking hot and anxious, what would you think? That somebody needed help and/or a lift to the airport, right? It seemed fairly obvious to us, but not to the many drivers of a very steady stream of cars and trucks. They zipped by us for more than 20 minutes.

In retrospect, we probably should have just waved somebody down, but didn’t. At last we decided we’d just walk. As we were getting situated, a wonderfully cheerful man pulled his car behind us and offered a ride.

“I passed you on my way 15 minutes ago to drop off my daughter at the airport, and when I glanced over on my way back, and saw you were still here, I turned around, wondering if you need help.”

Did we ever! We hopped in and he drove us to the terminal, for which we were most grateful with the double whammy of the blistering heat and time we needed to make our plane. He was friendly and delightful. We made our connections just fine, vowing to ALWAYS leave an extra hour for problems.

When we were at last safely waiting at the gate for our flight, the realization of the situation washed over us.   We had been part of a series of mini-miracles that entire day! What if the tire had blown while we were on the Salt Lake City freeway during rush hour? Or high in the canyons later in the morning with a plane to catch that afternoon? Or by ourselves and nearly to the airport with no one to help us get there and to take care of the car and flat tire?

We were humbled and grateful by the Lord’s protection.

Over the next several days as I reflected on it all, it slowly dawned on me that although of course I was extremely grateful for our own good outcome and mini-miracles, how many times have I NOT been part of a mini-miracle for someone else by ignoring what is in plain sight? Am I as oblivious to simple ways to help a stranger in need as those drivers that hot summer day? (The fact that a number of them were probably LDS based on the geography of the airport is another point entirely.)

It was such a simple thing to stop and offer that well-received ride. Even with the modern day threat of strangers ,this one was a pretty safe bet given the circumstances, and in broad daylight no less. Although in good conscience I would not have provided a ride as a single woman without Bob in the car, the principle is still the same: How often am I missing the obvious and an opportunity to help create a mini-miracle?

By the same token, what simple things am I ignoring that provide mini-miracles for my health?

One of the easiest mini-miracles to both create and miss is to simply drink enough water. Though we were in no serious danger that day on the desert by the airport, it’s not rocket science to realize that none of us can live long without water.

Our bodies are composed of roughly 60% water. That means when we are dehydrated- and most of us spend our days constantly dehydrated to some degree – we are affecting the performance of the majority of our body. Nearly all of our systems do not function as well without the proper water intake.

 So, really, what does this mean? Why should we drink more water?

 1. If you don’t drink water, you will die. It’s that important. Depending on our environment, we can live only a few days without water – maybe a week. We can live much longer without food. For most of us, we should prioritize the consumption of water far more than we currently do.

2. Prevent cancer. Yes, that’s right – various research says staying hydrated can reduce risk of colon cancer by 45%, bladder cancer by 50%,, and possibly reduce breast cancer risk as well.

3. Be less cranky. Research says dehydration can affect your mood and make you grumpy and confused.3 Think clearer and be happier by drinking more water.

4. Perform better. Proper hydration contributes to increased athletic performance. Water composes75% of our muscle tissue!4 Dehydration can lead to weakness, fatigue, dizziness, and electrolyte imbalance.

5. Lose weight. Sometimes we think we are hungry, when actually we are thirsty. Our body just starts turning on all the alarms when we ignore it. For those of you trying to drop some pounds, staying hydrated can serve as an appetite suppressant and help with weight loss.

6. Have less joint pain. Drinking water can reduce pain in your joints by keeping the cartilage soft and hydrated. This is actually how glucosamine helps reduce joint pain, by aiding in cartilage’s absorption of water.

7. Flush out waste and bacteria.

Our digestive system needs water to function properly. Waste is flushed out in the form of urine and sweat. If we don’t drink water, we don’t flush out waste and it collects in our body causing a myriad of problems. Also combined with fiber, water can cure constipation.

8. Prevent headaches. Sometimes headaches can be caused by dehydration, so drinking water can prevent or alleviate that nasty head pain. Next time your head hurts, try drinking water.

9. Make your skin glow. Our skin is the largest organ in our body. Regular and plentiful water consumption can improve the color and texture of your skin by keeping it building new cells properly. Drinking water also helps the skin do it’s job ofr egulating the body’s temperature through sweating.2

10.       Feed your body. Water is essential for the proper circulation of nutrients in the body. Water serves at the body’s transportation system and when we are dehydrated things just can’t get around as well. 

Quick rules of thumb for drinking water:

   Drink half your bodyweight in ounces of water (if you weight 160lbs, drink 80oz of water each day).

   Carry a bottle everywhere with you as a reminder to keep drinking.

   Eat raw fruits and vegetables – they are dense in water. You can get water from food, not just from beverages.

Drink water and other fluids until you urinate frequently and with light color.

When you think about it, it’s not a mini-miracle at all, but a life-changing miracle that requires only the effort to go and fill that water glass or bottle, and drink enough every day.

Happy Miracle-Making!

(To read the entire article and very interesting footnotes and resources, go to CLICK HERE

Carolyn Allen is the Author of 60 Seconds to Weight Loss Success – One Minute Inspirations to Change Your Thinking, Your Weight and Your Life, available at her website CLICK HERE

She has been providing mental and spiritual approaches for weight loss success both online and in the Washington, DC community since 1999 presenting for Weight Watchers, First Class, Fairfax County Adult Education and other community groups. She is the owner MyMiracleTea.com, an herbal detox tonic in keeping with the Word of Wisdom, now used by Meridian readers and missionaries everywhere.  CLICK HERE.

She is a mother of five and the grandmother of a growing number of delightful grandsons and granddaughters and lives with her husband, Bob, in Springfield Virginia, where they serve as the nursery leaders