In The Middle

About two months ago, I bought a new car.

Yeah, I know, I’m really good about announcing things as they happen. Long story short: the Jetta lived a good nine years and 99,870 miles, but in the last year of our relationship, she cost me over $3,200 in repairs, which was coincidentally more than the value of the entire car.

After being stranded in 100 degree weather with a baby in the backseat, and a $1,400 “doctor” visit in July, we parted ways.

Since then, I’ve been using my three-month free trial of XM Radio to relive my youth and listen to all the music I couldn’t afford to buy on CD in middle school. Yep, the dial pretty much never leaves the 90s and Pop2k stations.

Driving home today, a 2002 “classic” from Jimmy Eat World came on, and suddenly I was seventeen again and the memory of the newness of driving came back to me in a flood.

I had completely forgotten.

Remember the novelty of being in the car alone? How scary and exhilarating and liberating to be the only one? Totally fresh, brand new freedom? Taking to the streets, I was like a wobbly-legged baby deer (and just as good at navigation).

I’m now on my 15th year of driving and my fourth car, and yet the lyrics of that song still mean everything they did when I first heard them:

(I know, posting lyrics to a song – a total throwback move in itself…)

Hey
Don’t write yourself off yet
It’s only in your head you feel left out or looked down on
Just try your best
Try everything you can
And don’t you worry what they tell themselves when you’re away

It just takes some time
Little girl, you’re in the middle of the ride
Everything, everything will be just fine
Everything, everything will be all right

Hey
You know they’re all the same
You know you’re doing better on your own so don’t buy in
Live right now
Just be yourself
It doesn’t matter if that’s good enough for someone else

It just takes some time
Little girl, you’re in the middle of the ride
Everything, everything will be just fine
Everything, everything will be all right

Almost 31 years old (in just four more days) and I’m still right there in the middle of the ride. And things are crazy. And I feel stressed. And sometimes I don’t know what to do with myself or my life or that new little creature that calls me mom. But I know everything will be just fine. Everything will be all right.

 

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