Thursday, August 1, 2013

A Miracle and Payback

I wasn't expecting a miracle. I had a friend who had said she and her husband would try to help me buy a car. At first, they said they'd help once they sold their extra car. But there was a problem with the title. So I didn't get too excited. I know how long things take sometimes. I was happy that they were thinking of me and wanted to help.
Then the miracle happened. I got a text message that they were going to give me a van. I just couldn't believe it. I had signed up for Charity Cars online but didn't expect to see any results from that for a LONG time. I was pretty far down on the list and couldn't find my way around the web site. It was not an easy web site to navigate.
So we met last week and went to the registry and I now have a van. I can't really believe it yet. I still feel like I'm borrowing a car. That's OK too. I will take better care of it that way. I get almost weepy when I think about how generous they were and how it has changed my life. It's just an amazing feeling to be able to go to the store any time I want. People can invite me over to visit and I don't have to ask for a ride.

Of course, now, I want to pay it forward. My new neighbors don't have a car. I've taken them to the store a couple of times. The husband is a locksmith and he fixed the lock on my camper. I had lost the key for it and he had keys that just happened to fit and adjusted it for the sagging door. I like the barter system.
But the other night they asked for a ride to a friend's house, which was some distance away, to pick up cigarettes. I didn't want to drive that far, and I didn't want to go right that minute. I had just settled down for the evening and was sipping a cold one and watching my little lizard buddy on the plant shelf stalk a fly. (I live an exciting life.)
I did take them but I was a teeny bit annoyed. When I thought about it, I realized I had always asked people to take me when it was convenient for them usually when they were going anyway. I only asked someone to drive me to the nearest corner store if I really needed something that day.
I really want to help, but I feel like I need to decide what I am willing to do.I end up doing what people ask and then being annoyed because it wasn't what I really wanted to do.
I will take them to the store when I'm going anyway or we've made plans to go. Or I'll take them to the corner store and even loan them money for cigarettes if they are desperate.  I will not drive them to Walmart which is miles away in the next town just because that's where they'd rather shop. I want to help but I don't have unlimited gas money and I treasure my time.
I hope I'm not being selfish after all the generosity that has been shown to me. I'm torn with trying to make a decision on how to handle this.