It's not JUST a car...
Updated: Feb 19
I remember when I was in college, my dad had to drop me off to the Metro Rail to go to the last stop of the route: University of Houston-Downtown. (This was way before they extended it to go farther into downtown.) It was a long ride but I really enjoyed being by myself. I didn’t have a car until I was 20. So I finally got a car to start my big girl job as a full time administrative assistant at the school where I later became a teacher.
I remember my parents blindfolded me and surprised me with a car in 2014. My first car ever was a 2015 Silver Nissan Versa. The gratitude of tears came like a flood. My parents had this up their sleeve. They slowly added the responsibility of having a car note and the insurance that was necessary for it. This is where I felt like I finally grew up. My independence had arrived.
With time, I gave my car a name. I named my car Selena. Why? Well she was silver and silver starts with an “S”. Lol And then, I love Selena Quintanilla and I had found a Selena sticker that looked like a Licence Plate so I put it on my car. So Selena just stuck with me. Lol It was silly, but I loved it! So as you see Selena throughout reading this, we are talking about my car. Lol
My little Selena took me everywhere. She went with me to work, dance practices, rehearsals, church, events, mini road trips, picking up and dropping off my dance students, and many errands. And then when I started Boujee and Blessed she helped me tons to ALLLLLL my markets. Selena helped a lot when visiting Mark when we were dating too. I will never forget those dates. Too many memories to count from the past 9 years. Selena was a very special car for me.
Since my parents helped me to get this car, the car was in my dad’s name but I paid the car note. I didn’t know this at the time but when I started having a car note, I paid around $289ish and without me knowing my dad always gave more to pay it off quicker. He did this often. For how long? I don’t know but he did it without telling me. He didn’t want me to pay for it for too long. See, when Mark and I got married, my mother in law gifted us a book from Dave Ramsey. If you know anything about Dave Ramsey you know it’s all about strict budgeting and you being debt free. Well guess who introduced Dave Ramsey to my dad, ME! Lol He became more obsessed than we did so he would always encourage me to be debt free. We would always exchange messages about it. I would ask him every now and then about how much we had left to pay. The relief of paying it off was closer and closer every time! We were excited! And in 2020, we paid off the car. I couldn’t have done this without my dad! So for 2 years I did not have a car note. My Selena did so well considering all the driving I did. As the years have passed I always said that I would ride Selena until the wheels fall off.
And that’s the story of how I got Selena.
But here is the story on how I lost her.
Fast Forward to October of 2022, I am getting accustomed to my new job since quitting teaching. I am comfortable. Life is going good. I am cruising by. I am doing just fine. I am actually doing this. I switched careers. From education to marketing, wow! I am killing it. And boom! I got in a car accident on my way back home from work one day. I was shaken but since I have the best agent who taught me on what to do (aka also my mom), I immediately took pictures, called the cops, called my husband and I went on the side of the road because I thought this person was going to be a “hit and run”. Luckily, he stayed but I was bummed because my car was not doing well and I had to make the decision to let the tow truck take it to a nearby shop.
I will spare you the details of everything but long story short, the person who hit me did not have insurance active at the time of the accident. But luckily, since I have the best insurance ever through Farmers and the best agent ever (aka my mom) I had the uninsured motorist coverage or whatever. It was a roller coaster but Farmers took care of me honey!
Okay back to the story.
My accident was on a Thursday. So I didn't go to work on Friday. But that same weekend, I had a photoshoot. I had no car to get to the photoshoot and I had already paid for the service. Luckily, my grandparents were in El Salvador for a whole month. So I borrowed their car until they got back. I went, took pictures, and even had a little content day by myself. That worked out perfectly because there were no rentals available until God knows when. It was a headache with Entreprise ya’ll! But the goal was to get a car rental before my grandparents got back. Enterprise was going back and forth with me and I reported them twice. Still nothing.
(Pictures from my photoshoot that I never posted.)
Then more life happens. On the very last week when I had my grandma’s truck the unexpected happened. I had gone to do an errand on my day off and when I got out of the car, the driver side door did not close. Like at all. The hook that latches to the door was damaged. So imagine your door just being loose and open because it doesn’t shut completely. Well guess who had to drive home with one hand on the wheel and one hand holding on for dear life for it not to open while driving. ME! And to make matters worse, at the stop of my house I get stopped by the cops. Apparently, I didn’t make a full stop at the stop sign. At this point, I could just break down and cry because this is the last thing I needed…a ticket. I told him what was happening and that I was so focused to keep the door shut while driving and that it literally just happened. Hell, I didn’t even know what was wrong with it at that time. Thank God, he understood my situation, gave me a warning, and let me go. The crazy part is that I was literally on the block of my house! My goodness. I call Mark, I tell him what happens and I am feeling very overwhelmed because how will I give this truck back to my grandma like this. I had to fix it now.
And just when it couldn’t get any worse, (yes it got worse that same day) literally 20 minutes later, I get a text. It was my adjuster telling me that my car was a total loss. It was at THAT point that I lost it. I cried. I sobbed. It was as if I had the same pain of grief again. I felt that as I lost my car, that I lost my dad all over again too. I was not only grieving my car but now my dad with it too. My car was the last physical thing that I had from him. Something that was special. Something that meant so much to me. I was devastated. I was broken.
Once Mark got home I just showed him the text and he knew that I just needed to be held. And so he did just that. Once I finished crying and had to put my big girl pants on. I had to get quotes for my grandma’s truck and deal with this issue at hand. After calling different mechanics to get quotes, we had to pay $500+ dollars for a little latch to go on this truck for it to close properly. Did I have money for that? Absolutely not! But thank God for a husband who saves money. So that happened! It gets fixed over the weekend. The only good thing about all of this is that it happened to me and not when my grandma was using the truck. I very much preferred for this to happen to me then to her.
That SAME day, on the worst day ever, a miracle happened. God had a surprise for me. I talked to my adjuster on the phone as he was explaining my documents for my total loss settlement. Mark and I had talked prior to this and we guessed that we wouldn’t get much for it because it was a very basic model, it had high mileage, and well…it was from 2014! After the longest and hardest day, the documents showed that it was double of what Mark and I estimated. At that moment, I thought it was a miracle from the Lord God himself! I was shook and cried again but this time with hope that I would gain a blessing in this chaos.
The next week comes along and it’s time to turn in my grandma's truck since she was back in town from El Salvador. Having her truck was another blessing from God during that month. It was not a coincidence that she was out of town and that I was allowed to use her truck. I was so grateful to her for allowing me to use it. But… here I go carless again going into the new week. I borrowed Mark’s truck when I needed it or when he wasn’t using it. I wasn’t able to go to work all the time so that meant my paycheck was cut short even more since I was part-time. My manager was very understanding and that was another blessing for me. She understood my situation and allowed me to work from home. This went on for at least a month but I finally got a rental in the beginning of December.
December 9, 2022 was my 30th birthday. I felt excited for the future. I think that 30 for me was a chapter waiting to begin. At the time of my birthday, I had nothing. Not much money, car-less but with a rental, but still wanting to celebrate with families and friends. My birthday was also another miracle from God. I had friends love on me big time by helping me throw such a fun party. My friend Tori allowed me to throw my party at her studio, my friend Evie did my background set up with the big 30 marquee letters, my friend DJ Rosez came to DJ, and my new friend (that I hardly know and that I met in business class) gifted me a cake.Yall I was a wreck that day. I cried all day. I cried on my way to my make-up artist. I was emotional on the way to my party. And when I saw everyone setting up and coming together for me, I had to really hold it in because I did not want to mess up my make-up. Lol My Birthday was truly a blast.
Reality sets back in, I had the rental up until the time that we left to Paris, so I was car-less when we came back and it was a very emotional time. Another holiday season without my dad. Our first Christmas in our own home. A roller coaster to say the least.
Mind you the entire time, from the moment I got into my car accident in September until the beginning of January I was not able to obtain my settlement. You see the car was in my dad’s name and since he is deceased I had to get the title transfer. The insurance was not able to send me anything until it was in my name. Well a week after my accident I went to a Title Office where they claimed that they could do this and that it would take 4-6 weeks for it to be transferred. Okay great! Cool! Well to make matters worse, I technically couldn’t do it at their office. I had to go to the DMV myself with my mom since my dad did not leave a will and she had heirship. I don’t know why the Title Office didn’t tell me this information. I pretty much wasted 3 months of waiting for nothing to happen for me to just be car-less. Even typing this is so exhausting. So I will spare you the details with this part too because it’s too much to explain. But long story short, the title transfer took over 3 months for it to only be DENIED!!!! Oh, I was pissed yall! I remember crying to my husband after I found out and I went to get my paperwork back and get my refund. I was mad, sad, tired and angry. It was a hard time because all of this was a reminder that he was still gone. It was a reminder that I couldn’t call him and talk to him. This would not be happening if he was here! I should've done the title transfer when we were done paying it off together. I didn’t care about the dumb refund. I just wanted this to all be over. It felt never-ending.
The next day I go to the DMV, I feel like okay this is it. I will be able to get the title transferred to my name and it will be over. The DMV says it will take 3 days to update the system and over a week for it to be mailed to me. This was a big deal because all my insurance needed to see was that it was in my name. Not my dad’s anymore. Well…it was done. It was finally in my name. It was finally over and I got my settlement for my Selena. I could finally breathe.
I questioned God as to why all of this happened to me. It felt unfair. But I learned SO much in that season of disappointment, fear, and uncertainty. I really learned to depend on God for my every need. God taught me to trust in Him. God taught me to depend on HIM fully. It was an opportunity for Him to step in and show me His goodness. I saw how he provided for me. I saw how he aligned certain things to know that it was ONLY by His grace. I saw how he allowed certain things to happen to guide me into the next thing. I have a stronger mindset than I did a year ago. I am fully aware of my worth. Even in my storm, God was my peace.
My miracle after the storm finally came and after some car shopping. Yo girl got a car! I am soooo grateful for my new car. It has been a blessing to say the least. I am still deciding what I want to name her but she is a baddie. Lol I wanted to get an SUV because we are praying we become parents this year. So in faith, we got a family car.
So what is next?
The beginning of January I actually had a huge job opportunity that I had interviewed for and I was really excited. I felt that this was it. My part-time job was not the place that I needed to be at anymore and I was really low-balling myself. But it was just a stepping stone job. So I decided to resign because I knew that this other job was for me. Well, God thought otherwise. Lol I didn’t get it, I had just resigned and here we are back at square one. I am out here doing entrepreneurship full time. I am dedicating myself to Content Creation, Social Media Managing, and most of all Boujee and Blessed. It has not been easy but I literally stepping out in faith once again. It is crazy to even type that because a year ago, as I was teaching, I remember being soooo done and burnt out. But I was too scared to leave. Too scared to take risks and not making enough. I don’t even recognize myself anymore. So now, here I am doing it.
I feel like this upcoming season is about discipline and working hard for my dreams. But also for the dreams that I don’t know that I have and want yet. I have never been in this position. But I want whatever God has for me. So I am going to step into that direction.
This is the first time I am writing about my car. Grieving her one last time. I really did feel that when I lost my car, that I lost my dad all over again. But like I always say, grief comes in waves. Sometimes I am strong and sometimes I am at my lowest. But we preserve.
This is the reason I was kind of MIA in the past few months and took a step back from being active on social media with my business. I was dealing with so much that and when I did show up no one really knew. And if I did, it was a miracle. When you’re in the storm you don’t really want to put it out there. We all go through hard stuff out here but no one really talks about it. But now that the calm is over, I am talking about the storm because God brought me through it. It was hard writing this blog because it was painful to revisit everything, but now I get to shout of the victory that I have now. God is and will always be good. Even through all of this, I am still blessed.
Till next time Blessed Babes.
Shameless plug: If you need insurance or want to shop around, contact my mom. She is truly the best agent. Address her as queen jk not but for real her name is Reina. Tell her I sent you :)