I have to sell my car. I can’t afford it any longer. It is one of those difficult decisions that I’ve avoided for some time causing a distress beyond words. The strain has muddled through my nervous system, lurking in my subconscious even when I think I am handling it well. On the way to the nearest Carmax dealer, which is an hour and a half away, I began the uncomfortable chit-chat of emotions. It was then that I realized how much my car has taught me in the past few years living up on these mountains:
1. The ego is just like a car. It cannot go anywhere without you operating it. The ego needs the conscious mind in order to establish its presence. Just driving to the dealership my ego was all up in chaos reminding me how I got myself in this situation. Bobbie, my best friend, tells me to treat my ego as I would a friend. “Talk to it like a buddy, like you would talk to me!” So, I finally told the nagging voice, “Please settle down and take a chill pill! It is only a car, for heaven’s sake. You lost your house years ago but not a home. You had to give up your company but kept your integrity. You have had to let go of your children so they could find themselves but continue to love them unconditionally. Get a grip, woman, it is just transportation!” The ego can create serious drama if we allow it. It’s like drinking a few Red Bulls and trying to drive the speed limit…the spiraling is sickening if we allow it.
2. A car is very much like having faith. We depend on it as a vehicle for getting us from point A to point B. We fuel it, take care of it, and then trust it will get us there safely. Just like the car, faith gets us from one point of our lives to another while we completely trust in the power of the Divine. Faith is a means of transportation…sometimes the only means.
3. Sometimes I wish I had an external light that would go on to let me know I am running out of gas. I must admit I wait to the last minute to fill my car up. (And, that is also the metaphor for me.) I also wait to the last minute to fill myself up with energy, rest, peace and entertainment. Where’s the light when you need it? I know it would be much easier if there was a sign other than exhausting myself. I admit that I am work in progress.
4. You know those things you see when you are sitting in the passenger side on a long trip? Those things you miss because when you are driving and focusing on the road, cars, and pedestrians the mind can’t capture? Life is like that. We get so focused on every detail ahead that we forget to look out the window and enjoy the scenery. This is a big one. I am always surprised at how much I witness when I am not driving up and down the same roads I drive every day. It’s like taking in a movie.
5. If I could just have wipers on my body to get rid of excess crap! I would love to have windshield wipers to clear out the many different people who at times come to crap on my parade. I would love to push a button and the suckers would be completely out of my view. I hate to drive in the rain but when I am at a stop light and the wipers are doing their thing there have been times I wish I could let things fall to the sides so easily. Then everything would be a clean slate!
6. Brakes wear out quickly if you rush, rush, rush. My car had been smelling like burnt metal. Just like the car, I am reminded I need to slow down and brake gently. I tend to take these mountain curbs at full speed and then slam the brakes. I have no clue how they last me as long as they have. Breaks and pauses are part of our psychological nature. Breaks are needed for our emotional, physical and spiritual bodies. I need to be gentle with myself, especially through the bumpy rides and not wait till the last minute to collapse. My morning time is my internal “brake.”
7. Last thing I have learned from my car is that I love cruise control. I jam to the music and do my little dance and enjoy the ride. With or without the expensive metal property I plan on living my life on cruise control as much as possible without fear. I am reminded, “How much I missed simply because I was afraid of missing it.”-Paulo Coelho. It’s a beautiful ride from here on….