Accident-al good problems

family problems rambling Nov 08, 2022

My son got in a car accident last night.

He is ok. The other driver is ok. 

We are thanking our stars for all involved being unharmed.

The cars are not ok. At all.

It rocks your world as a parent to get that call. "Mom, I've been in an accident."

On one hand, "phew, he can call. He seems ok."

On the other hand, "what happened? Where are you? Was anyone else in the car? Was there another car?"

And your mind goes to the worst possible scenarios. You tell yourself to be calm, but you can't be calm.

Not until you get to the scene and hug your child can you feel any sense of calm.

Because we know.

We know not everyone gets to feel calm.

We know how many car accidents end up. We know the results because we've seen them, we've had friends and family hurt or lost because of them, we may have been in accidents ourselves.

We know the real pain and fear.

I never met my grandmother and aunt because they were hit by a drunk driver and died in the year before I was born. I was given their names and their stories, but never got to meet them. It's a hole in my story that I think about often—usually when people ask me why my name is pronounced like "On a hill" and not "ran a race". Anna, the way my Greek grandmother was called by her family

So when my son called me, there were all kinds of emotions. All kinds of fears. The least fear for me was, "Now we will have to find a new car" but it was one if his first fears.

Three of our kids are drivers. And currently they share one car.

It's not ideal.

And now they share no car.

Which is less ideal.

Especially for my husband and me, because now they need to use our cars. We need to share our vehicles or drive them to school/work.

But it was the last thing on my mind when he called me.

Now that we know he is safe and the other driver is well, we think about a new car (a replacement car, not new... they're teenagers and young adults, after all). In fact, we had already planned on getting a second kid car for my daughter to take to college. Now we have to think of two cars.

Who likes to buy cars? Because I don't.


Do you finance? With whom? Lease? With whom? Find something you can pay cash for? What is worth it?

And the rigamarole. Oh, the rigamarole.

Someday I'd like to buy a car in under an hour. That would be my dream.

But no... there is a whole song and dance. Going back and forth. Even if I had the cash in hand, it would still take three or more hours. Or "come back and we will have the car washed and paperwork ready" and it still takes another hour or two.

You COULD buy privately. I've done that before. You never know what you're going to get and if you do the right due diligence, it takes longer than three hours.

YET... and yet... what a great problem to have. To be put out by buying a car. To have a son that is well and the insurance and ability to find a new car. What a great problem. A fortunate problem.

To have a name that is often mispronounced but holds so much love for people who have lived beautiful lives. To be called a word with so much meaning.

The ability to take time from work to find cars for my kids to be able to work, learn, and play. What a fortunate problem for all of us involved.

Of course I hope that I will never get a call like that from any of my kids again. But I know I will. Something like it. That is part of living, right? And loving and connecting and sharing our lives. I will feel that sinking feeling again and worry and pray.

I won't worry about replacing a car when my mind isn't calm with worry about the safety of people. My people and others around them. 

I'll try to remember that when I go look for a car today and it takes more than an hour to buy it. 😉