Friday, October 30, 2009

I've waited hours for this and I've made myself so sick

My quest for a car continues. I hate being up against the clock on things like this. Newspaper deadlines and other deadlines at work I can handle easily — I usually complete tasks ahead of schedule and faster than many people's expectations. It's one of few things about myself of which I'm especially proud. But when I have to rely on others to get things done for me, and when I'm grasping blindly in the dark, unfamiliar with the process and not getting too many answers along the way, it's difficult to do things in a fashion timely enough for my own expectations, which I tend to set pretty high.

Such is the case with looking for a car. Perhaps my downfall is an innate character flaw I've possessed since childhood: Once I have my mind set on something, I'm locked in on it, and the blinders come up to block out any other options besides those that will get me closer to attaining my goal. If something comes along to make that goal unattainable, it's extremely difficult for me to change how I feel about it and to form new goals. It leaves me with a frustrated, disappointed feeling that my time before was wasted, and now I have to start all over and sometimes even do extra work to make up for this seemingly wasted time.

So now that I've got my sights locked on this one particular car, I can foresee it being very difficult if it turns out there's some innate, irreparable flaw in it that forces me to have to begin my search all over again. Starting a new search could take so long that I'd run out of coverage on my rental car, which ends next Friday, Nov. 7. Then I'd really be screwed. Without a car and without many options, I don't know what I'd do.

A coworker and friend of Darren's used to be a mechanic, and he graciously agreed to go with Darren to the dealership where this particular car is at 11 a.m. today to inspect the car for any potential underlying issues we didn't find when we test-drove and inspected the exterior of the car last week. The dealership is letting them use their service station to put the car on a lift and get a good look at it. Darren will then let me know how that goes, I'll make a decision, and we'll go back to the dealership when it opens Saturday morning to begin the negotiation process — should everything check out, of course. I've been approved for a great deal on a loan from AAA, but before I can close on it, the dealership needs to fax over a couple forms that can only be filled out after I've technically purchased the car, which brings up more unknowns and issues I'm not sure how to resolve, mostly because of my unfamiliarity with the whole process. I figure everything will work out. There must be people out there who have just as little an idea of how these things work as me, and yet they drive away with halfway decent (or better) pre-owned cars all the time — so why can't I?

Maybe I'm thinking about all this way too deeply, but I like to have a plan B (or C or D or even E) for every possible outcome, and usually the worst possible outcomes are the most difficult to invent solutions for, so I think about them constantly. I know, I know, you're going to tell me, "Liz, chill out already!" and you're right. I really need to learn to just chill out more, but every time I try to do that, I feel like I'm not thinking about something I should be or coming up with a solution to a problem still hanging out there. If I chill out, I might miss something important that needs to be addressed immediately, and I'd run into even more problems if I decide to try relaxing and not solve them right then and there.

By now you're probably convinced I'm just one big ball of stress, though I'd say that's only partially true. Deep within me somewhere, if I dig down enough, I can find a glimmer of hope that tells me everything will work out OK and soon this will all be over with and I can go back to normalcy. After all, things tend to work out for me in the long run anyway ... right?

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2 Comments:

At 3:34 PM , Anonymous Elyse said...

Liz, love your post today. I also get really stressed out all the time about everything and when I try to chill out, I always feel like something's not right. But the part that really hit home was this: "Once I have my mind set on something, I'm locked in on it, and the blinders come up to block out any other options besides those that will get me closer to attaining my goal. If something comes along to make that goal unattainable, it's extremely difficult for me to change how I feel about it and to form new goals."--wow, that is me exactly. Glad to know I'm not the only one. Good luck with the car!

 
At 6:06 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh goodness, I've missed a few postings! Hearing about the difficulty you have been going through is heart-wrenching, Liz. I, too, know what it is like to be particularly attached to an electronic device. Years ago, I had a lime green blender that I daresay stole my heart. You will probably find this an absurd statement to make, but it's quite true. This blender was fantastic. Fantastic, at least, until a certain young man (who shall remain nameless) decided to puree his marble collection in my blender. Oh my gosh, what a day! As I hauled that gorgeous blender out to the trash, I felt myself tearing up, and to this day have not found a blender that replaces the one I lost oh so many years ago.

But fret not, dear Liz! Everything in this life happens for a reason, and I have every confidence that you will soon discover a new car that you will grow to love almost as much as the old one. For what would life be if it remained stagnant forever? Change offers us a chance at rebirth, and I know you will take it in stride. Best of luck with this automobile search, and as always, God Bless!

 

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