Not so long ago I bought a car. It’s less than a year old, and I admit that I still find myself wowed by the heated seats and bluetooth. I love my car. What I hate is the car buying experience. Buying a car seems to require a certain level of equal parts tenacity and sleeze. It’s a negotiation so that the dealership makes money and you walk away feeling like maybe you didn’t get screwed as bad as you could have. There is this almost dance of passing numbers back and forth across a desk with some sort of silent compromise happening. Too high of an interest rate…pass it back. Free oil changes for a year but same interest rate, pass it back. Take $3000 off the price and throw in upgraded (whatever that means) floor mats. Back and forth. As I get older sometimes I just wish things were labeled with the actual “sticker price”.
When I was decades younger and dating there were so many negotiations. So many silent negotiations that were made to accommodate the relationship I was in. A certain back and forth that happened. He didn’t love sports…okay, but could he be a good provider for my kids. He wasn’t really attracted to me but could fiercely protect me if I needed it. He didn’t believe in God, but he didn’t not believe in God. Back and forth. Back and forth.
Today, I have a sticker price. An “as is” sticker price. There isn’t a lot of room for negotiation. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not an uncaring horrible, unwilling to bend person, it’s just that I’ve been negotiating for decades, and I’m down to the final number. While I know that there will be compromises and negotiation, certain things I will take a stand on, and the sticker price isn’t changing.
There’s a price to pay to be in a relationship with me, but there are great accessories too. Great things that you can count on, you can depend on, that you can build a life around. While I hope that whoever decides the sticker price is not a bad deal will continue to be wowed by the accessories, I know that the price is high.
I’m looking forward to being past the purchase and just being able to enjoy the ride. The sometimes bumpy, needing antifreeze in the middle of the night, replacing headlights and windshield wipers, and occasional flat tires and all that comes with owning something you love. Relationships are a bumpy ride that require work, and always being vigilant to the sounds and the feel of the ride. So today I continue to pray that God is working on my life and that He’s got this covered. I pray for patience and peace and more certainty, and an amazing buyer. Because there’s just something intoxicating about the ride.