In case you've missed it, we've had quite a run of terrible luck lately. To add to it, just a few days ago the brakes in our one working vehicle went out. We were going to barely be scraping by paying all our bills right now on time and there was pretty much no way we could have bought new brakes. I called my mom to see if she could get us a discounted price through their business account with the auto parts store and she sensed the total desperation in my voice as I tried to hold myself together long enough to get through the conversation. She said she was going to see what she could do and call me back. I figured that at most, they might be able to pitch in to help us buy the part & they'd be there for phone support to help us change the parts out. I was incredibly shocked when she called back to let me know that not only were they going to buy the parts, but they were going to drive the 3+ hours to my home pulling a trailer full of everything they could need to fix our car and help us get it going again. They also towed away my other (non-working) car to see if they can fix it, and if they can't, I get the pleasure of demolishing it before they take it in for scrap. My mom even said she'd teach me how to drive the bulldozer so I can use it to beat that pain the ass of a car to a pulp. So this past Wednesday, my mom, my uncle, and my nephew all drove up here to save our asses. It happened to be my nephew's birthday and he was pretty excited to be able to just watch Netflix all day & play on our laptop since he's home-schooled on my mom's little farm and he's used to always having a long list of chores to keep him busy. It didn't take my uncle very long to figure out we needed a new master cylinder for our brakes, as well as new spark plugs and wires. They made a trip to the auto parts store and spent almost $200, bought us some Taco Bell, and came back to get to work. After they got the brakes fixed, they loaded up our broken down car onto their trailer and then my mom & I went grocery shopping. I looked at our bank account and knew I had about $80 max with which to buy us food for the next 10 days or so. On the way there my mom told me that she would pay for the groceries and she wanted me to use my money to get gas to fill up our car. She went through Walmart picking out meals for us. Meals that we usually don't eat but stuff that was cheap and would make multiple things. She bought us a lot of staple foods and my face definitely shown that I was overwhelmed. I think it's more food than has been in my house the entire time we've lived here. We came back home, made some pizza for the boys, made some chocolate cupcakes with chocolate chip icing for the birthday boy, and just had a good time in each other's company.
I still find myself in shock from time to time that my mom and I have a pretty good relationship now. Throughout most of my teenage years, we fought like crazy, both being physically and verbally abusive to each other. Moving in with my dad seemed only to intensify how much hatred I had for her. It wasn't until after Matt & I had started dating that she and I finally even started talking to each other again. Matt and I actually lived on her property when we first got married until we could afford our own apartment. It's nice to see it come full circle and while there are still many wounds there from my adolescence, they just might have started to scab over a little.
I am just feeling really thankful for my family right now. For the family I was born into, the one I married into, the one I merged into after over a decade, and the one that we continue to build for each other. Without them, our crapptastic luck would have been unbearable but because of their support, love, and never ending faith in our capacity to make our lives better, we have been able to endure. We make it over one hurdle only to find a few more detours, roadblocks, and dead ends on the other side. I know we'll make it through but I don't think either of us have been unchanged by all this. We walk around a little more cynical and jaded, glaring suspiciously when hope tries to rear it's ugly head. There's no one else I'd rather stand with on this journey than Matt (and he reminded me of that for the millionth time today as he volunteered to throw my banana peel at the folks protesting in front of the planned parenthood down the road from us...and followed through!)