Thursday, May 28, 2020

I Miss You, Texas!

According to Facebook memories, today is the 5th anniversary of our Texas exodus. They rarely share anything that really makes me feel anything, or maybe I just don't look at them enough. Today, though, I happened to see it and, well... I'm pretty bummed. Matt and I were just talking last night about how much we miss Texas. For me, this is an every day event. I want to go back, but we haven't really got any reason to do so. We have to be where work is, but I've made sure he understands that when we retire, we're going home to Texas.

In the last five years, since we left there, all our Texas friends have moved on or left this earth. Matt's family is there, but most of our friends no longer are. It's a little bit sad, actually. But for me, going back to Texas isn't about our friends. It's about Texas. I'd love to go back to Waco, but I enjoyed living in Stepheville, too. Honestly, it wouldn't matter as long as we were in Texas. 

Still, the amount of change for the people in our lives in the last five years, it's pretty amazing. 
  • A couple we were friends with divorced and one of them, Amanda, moved to Pennsylvania.
  • One of my girlfriends, Melanie, moved to Arkansas for her husband's job.
  • One of my grad school friends moved to New York.
  • A very close friend and amazing human, Tommy, had a major stroke and passed away at 38 years old.
  • Matt's childhood friend, Terry, moved to Florida.
No one is left there except one half of the divorced couple, another woman I know but haven't seen in almost 20 years, and my in-laws.

The fact is, our lives have had some major changes since moving away from Texas. We're better off financially. We have a mortgage, rather than rent, and two fairly new cars paid off. Overall, our life is good and we've grown since leaving. That changes nothing for me. If Matt came home tonight and told me to put the house on the market, we were moving back to Texas, I'd do it without question. 

So many of our life milestones happened in Texas...
  • We got married
  • Earned 5 degrees between us
  • Matt started a job that became his career
  • We moved together 4 times in the 16 years we spent together in Texas
  • We got Chummer, Galileo, Anakin, and Chewbacca while living in Texas.
  • We lost Chummer when he was only 6 years old. 
Most of all, I grew into an adult there. We truly grew up since moving in together when I was just 20. We learned to appreciate one another and share in so many hobbies. We had uncountable hours of laughter and good times there. It's where we truly belong.

I miss you, Texas!

Saturday, May 9, 2020

The Almost Trade-In

In a fit of practicality, I thought this last week about trading my sporty hatchback for a small SUV. I went so far as to look for one that would be the right fit, check the trade value on my car, and talk with Matt about what he thought. For the record, he thought it was an awful idea and he talked me out of it. Thank fuck he knows me well enough to know when I'm being insane and call me out on it... nicely. I just wanted him to play devil's advocate. I already knew all the reasons I shouldn't trade my car, I just needed someone willing to let me bounce all the reasons it might be a good idea and then tell me why not. He's amazing at this, by the way. 

The thing is, I love my car and he knows itBeing a Veloster owner is almost a part of my identity and has been since Matt bought me my first Veloster on 4th of July weekend, 2014. The car suits me perfectly, but isn't the easiest car to drive all the time. It's not suited to handle winter without prep work (winter tires) and since it sits only 5" off the ground it's not that easy to get it in and out of some parking lots without scraping the underside. It's not a lazy driver, if that makes sense. With a 6 speed manual transmission, it's not driven passively. But, I still love it.

The reasons I was considering trading it are complicated. The car isn't practical under any circumstances. It's a toy, something fun and sporty, but not really what you would expect an almost 42 year old woman to be driving. And, I'm not driving it that much. In a year, I've only put 2,300 miles on it, which is almost nothing. It's so low that our dealer has refused to change the oil twice because I don't have enough mileage. One of the guys in our dealer's service department made a snide remark about how I don't drive it enough to enjoy it.

But, I've dropped into a sort of depressed funk lately that's making me doubt whether I deserve fun and sporty. Which, makes no sense, and I know that. But, I still feel it. So, I looked for a car I could almost straight trade for, a high end 2018 Kona with a lot of the features my car doesn't have, like an automatic transmission, heated seats, and a moon roof. Consolation prize features to make me feel better about trading a car I love for something less. But, I couldn't bring myself to go much further than window shopping because even in a brain fog, I can still see enough to know I would regret it.

So instead, I took the Veloster out of the garage yesterday and showed it some TLC. Do you know that when I was a kid, washing my parents car was my favorite "chore." We always had such a good time playing in the soap and water. Turns out as an adult, hand-washing your car is actually work! It's the first time I've hand-washed it since buying it at the end of March 2019. I also scheduled an appointment for my windows to be tinted and am looking at a set of wheels to replace my stock wheels. I absolutely do deserve this car which, by the way, is actually paid off in full. If I'm going to drive a toy, I'm going to play a little bit of dress up along the way.

Soapy - 5/8/2020
PS. I am 100% aware that this post is full of crazy. Welcome to the inside of my head. :\