this weekend. Leading up to this moment, I dealt with fatigue, anxiety, and even a little depression. I missed my usual Thankful Thursday post and link up. I have not been creating, or writing, and why not, I love what is happening here, in my slice of cyber space, so why was I so quiet? Why were words not buzzing out of me and spilling on to pages? Paralysis by analysis in looking for a car as our income tax return came in, left it’s mark on my emotions and energy levels. As a family we had discussed being the best stewards possible with any money as we have had to learn to live with less the last couple of months then we were accustomed to. We considered just sitting on the money and not buying a car for a bit, (yeah that lasted for a whole five seconds, okay maybe one sleep cycle we held to it) we have learned how to get around without one, and I shared previously how I am thankful I do not have one. (I actually thought about not even telling anyone the tax return came in, I was just so paralyzed, I did not want to make a bad decision.) I couldn’t hide under the covers forever (though they called to me so loudly telling me sleep would make it better, or when I sleep I don’t need a car…..) I scoured the local Facebook market place and groups I belong to looking at endless options of cars. We were just obsessively looking which I swore we wouldn’t do. Looking stressed me out, and it stressed my husband out. I discussed many options with lots of different people. My husband and I asked friends and family to help us look. I wanted a super fuel efficient as possible car, for the as in a great of shape as possible, for the least amount possible. (Not impossible right?)
I was too afraid to choose. The past three and a half years have included a series of repetitive bad spending habits, which had consequences. Every thing I have purchased new or used seems to always have a problem, and I don’t mean just cars. Three lawnmowers in one summer, A carpet cleaner I bought brand new a couple years ago broke after the 4th time we used it to clean the carpets in the house, the trampoline I bought for summer fun, was never properly stretched, there was a problem with the springs to it straight out of the box. The Dodge Avenger I previously owned that I financed, I had to put in the shop at least six times under warranty in the short two years it was in my possession. I just really feel incapable of making a good decision because of these and other similar experiences over the last several years. Avoidance felt like the best choice. I was avoiding the wrong things though, self care, the building and applying of better habits and routines, and I gave myself permission not to do the dishes for three days. I should have been elated. I was not.
At 6:33 a.m. on Saturday I could not sleep anymore. Anxiety and worry held my thought process hostage. We were paying for an Uber and a rental car just to drive two hours away to look at a car. Those choices alone felt like a poor decision for use of our money. I tried to calm my fears, and tell myself that I did not have to buy the car if we didn’t like it, we could at least have a family day with a special lunch out if nothing came of our adventure in car buying. I fired up a super hot shower in an attempt to melt muscle tensions. I decided to employ my full schedule of self care this day. I put on full make up just to feel put together, and sassy. All the while, my problem with my potential car choice was that it’s more of a dream/fantasy car that I want instead of the money saver that I need. The purchase of this car will take all our money, likely to the very penny. I stare in my closet and select my bright white jeans, a shirt my bestie gave me two Christmases ago, and ease on my gray and white Converse *sneakers. I accessorized, with black cross earrings, and a blue black double strand beaded necklace. My above shoulder bob was pulled back into a tiny ponytail, and frizzes were tamed by this gel spray. I used SeneGence Concealer and Lipsense in Precious Topaz. (used to sell it would never be able to pay full price for the make up. I topped it all off with a plain black mascara. Turned out my son had not slept much the night before either for he had anxiety as well, but for reasons that travelling gives him motion sickness, and the idea of doing a new activity like this made him nervous.
The Uber came at 8:30 a.m. and we arrived 15 minutes early to Enterprise Rental. (Originally to look at the car, we thought about just me traveling by train one way which was 72.00. My husband decided I should not go alone, then we realized what a bad idea it might be to leave the teenager in charge of the house, not knowing how long we would be. The train ticket costs times 3 or 4 was much more expensive, then just renting a car (thanks to my “Dad” for pointing that out.) I would have then had to Uber to the seller’s house, and those expenses were if I even bought the car, what if I didn’t.) The car rental cost was $50.49 per day plus applicable taxes, and I chose Roadside Assistance just in case, because well life happens to me and the drama llamma comes by my way A-LOT. Five people total, loaded up for the 2 and a half hour ride. We had breakfast from McDonald’s on the way for 10.12. We had my son use his phone as our Navigation guide in the rental and we unexpectedly had to pay a few dollars in tolls. By 12:43 PM, I was standing face to fender with a 2007 Ford Mustang Convertible. A Mustang is one of my favorite cars for reasons I cannot remember. I had been nervous the whole way too look at the car, so much so that my anxiety meds, and CBD oil had not made much of a difference.
My husband and I looked the car over, checked for leaks, had someone else look at it with us on video chat, let the kids sit in the back seat and see how much room there was (which is like zero….no space at all.) We inspected the top. We took it for a test drive, did everything and checked everything everyone we knew to ask told us to do up to and including praying about the car. There were some qualms about the aesthetics of the car. I think my teenager expected perfection but the aesthetic issues just hadn’t shown as well in the photos on Facebooks, as they do under a scrutenizing every detail eye. I paid the seller for the car, but my son was unhappy, felt the car was ugly, scarred, the interior needed a little work and the bumpers were not as shiny as the rest of the car. I left with the car feeling like I had potentially made a bad decision, knowing that acquiring it cost almost every penny we had. My son was unhappy. So I was unhappy. (maybe something to do with codependency, codependency is an excessive emotional, physical, and psychological reliance on a relationship that is dysfunctional. … At the core of the codependent behavior exists the refusal to acknowledge a problem. They believe that one’s needs should be sacrificed for others, regardless of the consequences. I mean maybe I have this problem..not to therapist). My son was upset about the bumpers, and if only one person had owned the car why this and why that, he felt as if I had been deceived in some way. (Maybe I was I will never know, and that is between God and the seller.)
When we stopped for gas, no one could agree on anything for lunch, the day was getting emotionally harder for me. In my head I had pictured perfection in every moment, having a great sit down lunch being waited on, laughing and talking, being outside of our usual four walls all together in a happy way, instead I was being met with attitude and resistance from almost every side. I chose to eat immediately, and just went to Wendy’s. My daughter, husband, and I ate there. The other two teenagers wanted Chick Fil A but there was not one close by so they chose to wait till we returned closer to our town to eat. We put the top down on the car for a part of our ride, kids began laughing, and pulling hoods tight against their faces because of the chill in the air. When we made a stop they climbed over the side of the car,”like they do in Rush Hour,” according to my son. My heart was still heavy it was as if my son’s attitude and how he felt somehow equated my happiness. We encountered traffic delays and detours, and somehow managed to not have to pay any tolls on our drive home. My daughter likes to play “DJ” in the car and manages the radio when she rides with me. This song came on the radio (I do not own any rights to the music or video content) (It will bless you and speak to your heart)
Then it became a God moment….. the first phrase,”I was born to walk through the fire,” was such a heart moment, I became elated, I could understand why life has had some of the struggles it has had for me. All the things I felt that have gone wrong, or the dark clouds that I think always loom over, that life is always a challenge. I received affirmation in those moments and lyrics on the radio of the car I had just purchased, on a radio station I would not have heard if we had not traveled so far to look at the car. I was born for every moment and struggle I have had. It is my purpose, and I am unsure what God is going to do with it, but I was born for it. I experienced for the first time in maybe four years a peace that has evaded me.
I thought more about the car, I made peace with my purchase. I did it partly for my self care (hear me out) I love a Mustang, a convertible is a dream for me, it is a car that will not have payments, it is a car that is still made, and I will always be able to find parts to fix it. It is imperfect, it has blemishes, imperfections, and even a couple scars. Sometimes the engine roars, sometimes it is quiet. So the car needs a little tlc. Guess what? So do I. I too am perfectly imperfect, I have blemishes, scars, and can be loud or quiet.
I will research some things that I have on hand already to use to properly clean the car. I will enthusiastically sew by hand the gap in the front seat seam. I will find a creative design to make a unique dash cover for the car because there is a crack there I did not notice. I have no fear of the car breaking down, we know how to get around without one. My husband and I know if we put our money together, we can get the bills mostly paid.
I admit to myself I like the car, and if my kid doesn’t well I shouldn’t ever have to worry about him asking me to drive it as he approaches sixteen will I? He warmed up to the car a little by the time we got home, and said it just really needed a good cleaning, and I told him that will make a great difference with a good coat of wax. I stepped out of my back door yesterday morning and smiled so big and bright, something I am unsure I have done in a while. So excited the car is mine. So excited I had had such a God moment in the car, and I feel stress free when I sit behind the wheel to drive it because I do not have to worry about it getting repossessed, I purchased and paid for six full months of insurance as well, and got full coverage with Esurance for the price of liability insurance with other companies(shopping for car insurance can also induce paralysis by analysis.) The last car I had was costing me between insurance and financing over 500 a month. This one won’t be doing that.
(The song I mentioned above is sung by the Social Misfits, I tend to give my vehicles a personality or name if you will, ( i.e. Betty Blue for my Honda Minivan when I had it, Ava the Avenger for the car that got totaled in December, and I introduce Misfit Mustang for this one, because you know what truth is in this life I do feel like a misfit, and the car itself might be a misfit (as in not exactly the right fit) for our family. It is perfectly imperfect. I could not be happier right now for the peace I have found.
*notes affiliate links where I receive compensations if you purchase using my links at not cost to you!
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