A ‘New’ Car

I can’t believe I forgot to post about the big purchase in April!  Lucy is a gifted nag and ever since her birthday in August, she has taken every possible opportunity to make the ‘if I had a car’ speech.  There is definitely something to be said for the old adage about the squeaky wheel getting t he grease!  There were many reasons I finally decided to help her in her quest for a car; I didn’t really care if EVERYBODY had a car and I never minded being the Mom bus.  But when we had a couple of weeks in which I had to be at band practice early, we had scheduling problems.  And I began to cave!

Lucy had a number of cars lined up that she wanted to look at but they were all about three hours away.  I convinced her that we could at least look at some of the local lots and we started our journey for the perfect car.  And I do mean the perfect car.  Lucy didn’t like the headlight shape on one car, the upholstery was not right in another car.  Red cars were out.  Ironically, the first car we really looked at turned out to be the ‘it’ car.  It is a 2011 Volkswagen Jetta SE in dark gray.  Every car we looked at after that was compared to that icon of perfection!  Since her father and I were going in together to purchase the car, we went together to look at it on a Saturday morning.  Robert is not known for quick action but surprisingly, things moved pretty quickly after we looked at Martin (the newly named Jetta).  He went back to the car lot that afternoon and negotiated the price and suddenly Lucy was the proud (can I repeat that?  the proud, proud) owner of Martin.

Oh it hasn’t been the perfect relationship but that has not diminished Lucy’s love for this car one iota!  First we discover a running light was out.  Then both of the low beams were out.  She actually got pulled over because the lights illuminating the license plate were out.  When she stopped to get gas, the car would not start after filling up.  She called me in a panic but when I looked up the problem on the handy, dandy internet, it turns out to be a common problem with these cars.  You just need to keep trying until it finally starts.     None of these issues has dimmed her enthusiasm in the least for this car.  And this is as it should be!  As she drives the car more and more, she learns Martin’s quirks and learns how to work with them.  She can even start the car on the second try now after getting fuel!

This has been a bittersweet experience for me.  I enjoyed taking her to school and picking her up.  I enjoyed taking her to extracurricular activities and waiting for her; even when it takes hours for her to come out.  I loved the interaction we had during miles and miles of travel.  I loved being the first person she really talked to after school.  I knew things would change when she got a car but I didn’t think it would happen so fast.  Somehow I thought I would still take her to school unless I had a schedule conflict.  But the change was immediate.  She started driving to school right away and I have to constantly remind her to keep me informed on her location.  Sure, I have an app that can tell me where she is but I would rather keep the lines of communication open directly between us.  She is trying to remember to keep me in the loop but this is a big change for both of us.  What I didn’t expect was the sense of loss I feel.  Suddenly I feel extraneous and unnecessary.  This is a big mental adjustment for me.  Every school morning, I try to look at the bright side while I  luxuriate in bed after she leaves for school.  Hmmm, maybe I CAN get used to this…………


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