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Personal // 300,000 Miles of Perspective

It’s funny how time changes our perspective.  When I was in high school my parents bought me a used Nissan Sentra.  It had 73,000 miles on it and their goal was for me to not be on the side of the road with car troubles.

At first, it was awesome!  It wasn’t the shiny new cars like some of the other kids had, but the fact that I had a car was pretty amazing.  Then throughout college it got a little banged up.  The bumper had to be replaced, the paint on the hood started wearing away, it got some dents, and once I ran over a curb that dented the bottom of the door so bad it wouldn’t open!

I remember the day it hit 100,000 miles.  I was passing McDonald’s in Sylva, NC and stopped to get a celebratory ice cream on my way to class.

Then we moved to Atlanta.  I’ll never forget the day about a week into my new job when I had field training, which meant one of my coworkers riding in my car.  I wanted to quit because I was so embarrassed!  I spent the next several years being mortified of my car.  I’d park way down the street at someone’s house, or at the end of the parking lot at a restaurant– I never wanted anyone to see my car. pintopinterest

Soon after we moved to Atlanta, our second car got totaled.  We were a one car family.  And that car was ugly and old and had 200,000 miles on it.  We moved to South Carolina, and then to Virginia.  Quickly, our car broke down.  Our only car.  In a place where we only knew Josh’s co-workers.  Thankfully, his co-workers were amazing.  We borrowed one of their cars for a few weeks, and got us set up with a mechanic who we became very close friends with.

And then we got another car.  A second car.  It’s not super nice, but has four wheels, goes forward & backward, and we were able to pay in cash.  We were also debt free, and for the first time, had a little money saved up.

From that point on, I began loving my little Nissan Sentra.  Maybe it was the nostalgia, knowing that it’s bound to be in its final days, but I think it’s because it was finally a choice.  We no longer had to have the car.  We chose to have the car.

When that puppy hit 300,000 miles I celebrated.  I mean, how many people can say they have a car with 300,000 miles on it?  Not many!  We can’t really drive over 45mph without it smoking, and it has some fatal wounds at this point, but it’s our choice to drive it.  I am so proud of that little car and all it represents.  I never thought it would see my college graduation, yet here it is with my two year old in the backseat.

It reminds me that I can push forward and far exceed my own expectations.  Sometime I think we all need that little reminder!

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  • Sheila Ponthieux

    I completely feel you on this one. When I started college in 1988 I purchased a used 1984 Buick skylark. Unknown to me and not knowing how cars work it was a piece of junk and eventually had to have repairs. I ended up with a crooked mechanic and when I refused to pay him for the work he kept my car. Along came a wonderful man who refused to let it go. He gave the man the 500 dollars and went and towed my car home for me. With the engine in the trunk of the car. LOL! Over several weeks and many junkyards and a brand new rebuilt engine this man gave me back my car in great condition. Needless to say I married him. I drove that car until it started to rust apart and the door started to fall off,I had to use a bungi cord to hold the door closed. However the engine was still going strong. I only sold it for a $1 to a guy who used it to carry his tile laying equipment in because his wife refused to let him use the family car. It had over 250 thousand miles on it. You never know why God does things at a moment in time. When the car broke I didn’t understand, but so many blessings came from that broken down car. I met my husband and we bonded over the many nights we spent repairing it. We drove it to Disney Land on our Honey Moon filled with bird seed from the wedding guest. It carried us back and forth to my family and his many times after we married. Our first child was brought home in that car. Josh knows her Sarah from the YMCA. I still think of that car often. I would still drive it today rust and all. My hubby bought me a new car in 1999 an 2000 Nissan Altima. We still have that car today. Sarah drove it through high school and now into college. We have had to do some major repairs, but it is still going. We plan to keep it for the 14 year old to drive in a couple years LOL. GOD IS AWESOME!ReplyCancel