I hesitate to say this out loud, but…my car is…wait for it…fixed. I think. Pretty much. It’s probably fine; I’m just afraid to go out to the garage and see if it starts up.

Today is a much better day. I woke up feeling nice and cool and hungry. I am ashamed of yesterday’s whining session(s)–I was in a very dark place then. I’ve never been too good at suffering in silence. I will admit to being a big ole baby when I’m sick. But thanks to my whining, I was bombarded with more help offerings than I could even think to take advantage of. This should come as no surprise to the people in my local community–my town, my church, my neighborhood–is chock full of the sweetest, most caring and most helpful people I have ever encountered anywhere, outside of…my own parents.

I spent most of the day writhing in agony in a puddle of my own slobber on the couch; Merrick spent most of the day fussing at me from his post at my feet. It wasn’t until 4:00 or so that I felt stable enough to venture outside for what would have been my second try at car-fixing. It took me all of 2 seconds to notice the flat tire, which sent me into a downward spiral from which there was no return. My kids took cover while I allowed myself the time I needed to bawl my eyes out/punch a pillow/throw a tantrum/say a hundred cusswords/sweep the floor/bawl my eyes out.

And then I put on my big-girl panties (as Caleb so loves to say), swallowed my pride, and called somebody.

Just before sundown, 2 guys from my church descended upon my garage and started going ape on my forlorn little Saturn, airing up my tire and jumping up my battery. My head was pounding and my fever was raging–I feebly attempted to “help” them by locating various tools and offering to pour them refreshing 32oz plastic cups of ice water. I can’t count how many times they said “No thank you–go inside.”

They got my car running. They got my tire to be not flat. They stole my car for what I assumed was a test drive–when only one of the men returned with my keys after almost an hour I was suspicous. I got the rundown from Mr. “We-fixed-this-and-that-and-by-the-way-you-have-a-new-battery-but-whatever,-call-us-if-you-need-anything”, and I almost wept with joy right there in front of him.

A new battery? I couldn’t get a straight answer on who bought it or how much it cost. I called the man who had already left, and I ended up talking to his wife, who relayed the message “Don’t take away my blessing” from her husband with such sweetness.

And really, how do you argue with that?

Words simply cannot express how thankful I am to the two nice men who worked their magic on my car, who spent 2 hours out in the chilly November air, away from their dinners and their families, all to fix my little old car, even though I don’t plan on going anywhere for the next couple days.

These people ooze good-naturedness and love. I don’t think they would accept money, and I don’t know how many times I can insist before I just start coming off as tacky. A piddly thank-you card seems a little meaningless compared to what they did for me.

Perhaps a tall glass of ice water…

About Toni

Mom. Wife. Artist. I take care of the kids and pretend to clean sometimes. I can cook spagetti and I have never been arrested. View all posts by Toni

2 responses to “Do-gooder.

  • Joell

    Glad to see my “operational car vibes” worked out. 😉 Why is it so hard for us to accept the kindness of others? I have had this experience in the past–remember Big Red?–and it would fill me with such gratitude, but also embarrassment that I would “need” help. Oh the shame!! The shame of being a needy Super Mom! Ha ha! I wanted to pay them back, but they don’t want to be paid back. They just want to help. Wow. What a concept. I think there is a book somewhere that talks about this…what’s it called? Oh yeah, The Bible. This is God’s love in action. So glad you were able to experience that yesterday. And glad you are feeling better today.

  • Katy

    How wonderful. How about paying it forward as they say? Whenever I have the opportunity to do something nice for someone–buy a lunch or whatever–I always tell them to just pay it forward. Good vibes all around!

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