Friday, March 19, 2010

He Was Right!

Only, please don't tell him.

HIM = my big brother, Andy. He's been my second dad my whole life, dispensing wisdom, advice, & sometimes even orders the whole time we were growing up. And even now. When I am over 30 years old & married.

Old habits die hard. I get that. That's why I still have torn cuticles around my fingernails. I just can't resist picking at hangnails, you know? But that's another story.

We are here today to celebrate how RIGHT Andy is. Almost exactly five years ago I traveled to his house for a weekend trip to buy a new car. Andy works for Toyota, he knows a lot about cars, & he can get me a discount. Yay! That weekend I came home with a new Corolla Sport. I was pretty happy.

While we were driving back to his house from the dealership I endured the advice-dispensing conversation. Andy said, "Look, I'm not going to tell you what to do." But he said it in that tone. You know the one, the tone that says I'm getting ready to tell you what to do. I nodded my head & turned to look out the window so he wouldn't see me rolling my eyes. I would like to say that I'm mature enough to just listen & make up my own mind without the eye rolling, arm crossing, sighing reaction. But yeah, I'm not there yet. Probably never will be.

Anyway, Andy continued by advising me to keep the Corolla until it was paid off. As in, done making payments. As in FIVE LONG YEARS!!! Let me tell a little bit about myself. I am slightly commitment shy. Not phobic; just shy. Especially in my 20's. At that point in my life I had not had a phone, house, car, job, boyfriend, NOTHING for more than a year or two. I was restless & it manifested itself in many ways. Side Note: I think this might have made Mike just a little bit nervous about me when we started dating seriously. Brave man, he took the risk anyway. I love him. So I listened to Andy's advice, nodded my head, feigned agreement. Inside I was thinking, no way!

We had our ups & downs, me & the Corolla. I tried to sell it a couple of times - even listed it here on my blog! No bites, no interest from anyone. So I kept it. I joked about selling it, trading it, putting it on craigslist. But I never did. Strangely enough, I've had that silly car for over 65,000 miles, numerous oil changes, two sets of tires & one miserably peeling flower sticker on the front windshield.

And today I am mailing the check to make the final payment. I can't believe we made it. I can't believe Andy was right. Mike & I are both ecstatic about making one more step toward debt-free living. I am ever astonished at the Lord's goodness in continual provision. Never over the course of these five years have I had to wonder how I was going to make the next payment. I'm just very joyful & thankful. That's all that can be said.

Well, & I guess I should say, THANK YOU, ANDY!!! You're the best brother I've got (heehee, you're the ONLY brother I've got!). You can give me advice anytime, bro.

Just don't use that superior tone of voice. It induces eye rolls EVERY TIME!


Heidi said...

Mary Ann, your blog always makes me smile! I don't have an older brother, because I'm the oldest. I really doubt if any of my siblings would ever say thanks for anything I have ever said or done. Pretty much, I was the bossy sister they never wanted to listen to. I still hear about how bossy I was. Glad you were able to thank Andy for the advice.

Carrie said...

Yay for you!!! Doesn't it feel so awesome knowing that the car is completely paid for?!! :) I can relate . . . we only ever bought one vehicle (Jim's truck) that we took out a loan for, but it felt SO good when we sent in that last payment. By the grace of God we were able to pay it off about a year early--yay for less interest!! We have decided we will never again take out a loan for a car or truck. Too much stress! Now we are down to just the house loan, which is bad enough . . . but we are thankful to be this far on our journey. Congrats to you and hope you do something fun this weekend to celebrate! :)

Erin said...

Yay! It does feel amazing to mail that FINAL payment!!! Very excited for you. Now here's advice my dad made to me. Keep making those monthly payments to yourself you can can eventually buy a car without a loan. We'll see how that one works. It may take awhile. :) Love ya!

Rebecca said...

Congrats to you!! Great feeling!

Older sister's advice: Go find a local credit union that has a car savings account, shop for highest interest rates (kinda like a Christmas club) and keep making the payment, but put it in the account. That way when you are ready for a new car, you will have a larger down payment!