This morning my oldest was on her way back to college. She was going straight to work first, and then classes after lunch. She was doing fine until she felt like something was hitting her back tire.
She told me, “I don’t know. I think something might have happened in that driveway last night. I thought I had run off in the ditch, even though I hadn’t, because that last storm washed it out so badly.”
I asked her where she was, and she told me. She was about twenty-five minutes away from me. I immediately starting rearranging my day in my mind–I could get to her and get her to work, just a little bit late, but then she’d need to be driven from downtown where she works back across town to her college campus. Four hours later. Not exactly fitting in with my schedule, but I was determined we could figure it out. And then I started worrying about who to take the vehicle to, wondering how serious it was, how much it would cost, how long it would take. She needs a vehicle to get to and from work at the very least…..
Then the thought immediately followed, conjuring up the scenario of a tire about to blow. Realizing she was on the interstate and how ugly that could be…..
“Wait. Is it doing it consistently? This feeling?”
“Well, not when I go twenty, but when I get up to forty, yes, constantly.”
Forty? On the interstate?
“I think you need to check it. Now. But be careful.”
She exited the interstate and went into a Zaxby’s parking lot because “it was closed and didn’t look ‘sketch.'” I love her criteria for stopping points.
She got out, and I held my breath. “Well, I know what it is,” she sighed, frustrated.
Oh me. “What? What’s wrong?”
“Well somehow my backpack strap got caught in the door and is hanging out hitting my back tire. I can’t even right now.”
While she berated herself, I laughed. And laughed. To the point I was nearly in tears.
Tears of relief. Tears of gratitude. And tears of realizing how silly I had been.
When Daddy was first admitted to the hospital and moved up to Emory and had a brain biopsy done and our world was falling apart and he was diagnosed with an extremely rare and atypical form of lymphoma, his mantra was: “We’re not going to go borrowing trouble.”
And looka there, Daddy, at what I did this morning.
I was borrowing all kinds of trouble.
Over a backpack strap.
I don’t know how often I do it, but I am sure I’ve made my Daddy shake his head many a time since he left this world, and I am sure this morning was one such occasion. I can just about see him sitting there in his chair, shaking his head, cocking his mouth to one side and grinning, “See? Didn’t I tell you? Don’t. Borrow. Trouble.”
Yessir. You told me.
And I’ll try to do better. Next time. And the time after that.
A backpack strap, y’all. I was so relieved, I was almost giddy.
May you find yourselves, in the face of the unknown, able to stay afloat–steady and safe–and row away from the waters of borrowing trouble. Nothing good is over there, and it’s rarely as bad as what we imagine. Thankfully so.
Love to all.