NOTE: This is part 5 (and finishes off the story) of my mountaintop rescue. Read part 1Read part 2Read  part 3. Read part 4. Tomorrow I will be sharing Kelsey’s journal entry about this whole thing. Next week, I will be sharing some of my thoughts about it all.

Last I left you, I was covered in blankets and coats with IVs in both arms, stuck at the top of a mountain. A helicopter with a rescue worker  hanging from a cable system was descending to us, and I was having a nervous breakdown trying not to let my extreme fear of heights stop my heart before they could even hook me on…

But before I continue that story, I thought I’d share this picture. Last night I drove to my mom and dad’s house to get the photos and video they took from the trailhead while they waited for me to be rescued. While you’re going through something like that, you often forget that some of the people you love most are worrying from afar. When I saw this photo in the batch, it made me feel so many emotions about what so many people had to go through that day. This is my mom. Waiting behind a barbed wire fence, unable to do anything but wait as the sun disappeared behind her. Well, wait and worry.

Ugh. I hope I never am in that position with Noah.

Anyway, up top, I watched as a rescue worker was lowered from a helicopter above me.

Or more accurately, I should say that I tried to watch. As the helicopter got nearer and the rescue worker touched down, the Search and Rescue workers covered my head up with blankets to protect me from flying debris.

The helicopter rescuer rushed to my side. “Hey, neighbor. Let’s get you out of here.” It was Rick Black, a man I lived next door to for seven years until I moved last November.

I’m agnostic.

But if there ever was a time to believe there was a God, that was it. For some reason, seeing Rick’s face immediately took all the anxiety and fear out of me. He was a man I trusted. A man who I knew had character and integrity. And my faith in him at that moment outweighed any fear of heights.

CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE