In the United States, approximately 2.4 million burn injuries are reported per year. Approximately 650,000 of the injuries are treated by medical professionals; 75,000 are hospitalized. Of those hospitalized, 20,000 have major burns involving at least 25% of their total body surface. Between 8,000 and 12,000 of patients with burns die, and approximately one million will sustain substantial or permanent disabilities resulting from their burn injury. (Journal of Burn Care & Rehabilitation, May/June 1992)Zane and I went to a burn survivor support meeting tonight held at Shriners Hospital downtown. It was really good to see everyone. We had met most of the people there back in December at the Christmas party. This time we got to hear everyone's story. There were people there who were burned by electricity, by natural fire, gasoline fire, because of someone else's mistake, because of their own mistake, in a suicide attempt, and in accidents in their own home. So many different circumstances, but each living with very similar outcomes. They face the same struggles, and it's fascinating to hear how they all overcome.
Burn survivors are some of the most incredible people I know. The public is often brutal to these people, staring and gawking at the scars. But they are so gracious, and so determined to carry on an amazing life regardless of the setbacks. When you almost lose your life, you are so overcome by gratefulness for life that scars are not enough to set you back. It is definitely a struggle to accept the new body, but the bottom line is that they still have a body, and their spirit is even stronger than before. I tell Zane almost every day how beautiful his scars are to me. To me, they're a fulfilled promise; a miracle; a remarkable story. Each one tells of a fight like no other; a fight for life, for healing, and for recovery. The scars say that God is almighty and the devil did not win the battle. The scars are proof that faith has brought us through and time has lessened the wounds. The scars prove that my husband is a fighter and he is even stronger now than he was before he was burned. So.. the scars aren't what we had planned, but they sure are proof of a miracle.. and for that, we are SO thankful!
On another note, I have some fantastic news! I can now say officially that we're coming home!! We'll be heading back at the end of the month. We would like to invite everyone who's able to join us in celebrating at the Mars Hill Snowmobile Club on January 29. It'll just be an open house style get-together so feel free to come any time from 5 - 9 pm. We would love to see any and everyone who has supported and prayed for us regardless of whether we've met you before or not. We would really like to thank you all face to face, and we hope you'll stop by.