My only warning was the sudden click of the doors unlocking themselves.
I briefly wondered WHY such a thing would happen before it donned on me.
I had lost control of my car.
Rather a heavy car….at twilight…on an unlit highway…12 miles from the nearest cell service…going 60 miles an hour.
Thoughts ran through my mind about what the bleep to do.
Fortunately, 2 weeks ago on this very road, I had an impulse to remember all the things I’d heard about what to do if the accelerator was stuck or the brakes didn’t work.
I tried the brakes, with very little effect. I tried shifting down, with NO apparent effect.
I was going round a curve with limited control over turning, but I saw the safest looking spot to get off the road and was determined to make it. I put one foot on the main brake and the other on the emergency brake, steering and pushing with all I had. Looking back, I would be able see the uneven skid of tire tracks left behind to tell the story.
But I wasn’t stopping fast enough.
In a last-ditch effort, I put it in park, knowing that’s the last thing in the world a body should do.
In the end, I did make it, shaken but unharmed.
I turned it back on and tried to put it in gear, to no avail. Something was wrong and it wasn’t going to get any better with me sitting there.
On my last call to my husband I’d said I’d be home in about an hour, and that all I wanted was a glass of red wine and a piece of cheese before bed. He wouldn’t even begin to come looking for me for at least an hour. I couldn’t simply sit and wait.
The nearest trailers were a mile away.
Too late for anyone to be outside, I decided to set off in my work dress and dainty sandals, a mite too fancy for the neighborhood, seeking a friendly soul with a telephone to loan.
Fear crept up and I pushed it down and kept walking.
As I passed some houses that just didn’t feel right, I asked myself what I wanted most.
I breathed as the answer came. Safety.
So I continued walking to the trailer that had caught my attention when I was standing at the car. It was the furthest away, but it felt the safest.
I stopped at the edge of their yard and asked my guides if this was the right place. I knew the answer was yes. Despite the lack of evidence in the yard, I also received the image of two dogs, one quite large, so I prepared myself to stay calm when we encountered each other. Walking to the front door, I affirmed safety. A dog barked briefly, a woman answered, and I shared my situation. She sized me up and graciously let me enter.
Sure enough, a pit bull mix ran up to me with a head as tall as my solar plexus. I greeted him calmly, thanking the Universe for the heads up!
The owners later admitted to being puzzled because he usually puts up an intense ruckus when strangers try to enter.
I called my husband, arranged for AAA to tow my car to a service station, and offered to my hosts to be on my way. They asked me to stay for a while and offered me something to drink.
Inside my head, I was wishing for wine, but refused to say such a thing. I asked for tea instead.
Do you know what?
The woman asked if ice wine tea would be OK.
I chuckled and said “absolutely!”
Gratitude. There was my wine, right?
The husband introduced himself. His first name is Harvey.
My last name is Harvey.
When I was about to leave to walk back to the car in the dark, Harvey offered to drive me. I accepted. Before I could get out of his car, I could see the lights of the tow truck driving to us.
I was safe.
I was also scared my car may never run again. That I had ruined the transmission. The rear wheels were completely locked up. It would NOT go into neutral – only park or reverse. The tow truck driver ended up hauling it up the ramp, skidding the wheels along. He said he’d never seen anything like it, and that it didn’t look good.
Challenge. How could I turn this into an opportunity to practice trusting at the speed of love?
Initially, my brain presented me with completely unhelpful ideas, like “Oh my God, I owe almost $5,000 on this car. I might have to keep paying for ages on a car I can’t even drive!”
As an antidote, I breathed and settled into my heart.
Safe, reliable transportation.
THAT’S what I want.
OK then. What does that feel like?
Comfort, peace and freedom.
So I settled into the space of comfort, peace and freedom, and let go of any specifics I had in mind.
Fast forward a few days to a call from the mechanic.
“Come get your car.”
“Really? It’s ready? It runs? Already?”
Turns out the air flow sensor was dirty and the air filter was dirtier yet. He cleaned everything and cleared the codes. Our best guess is that the sensor thought the engine wasn’t getting enough air and it stalled out, which explains everything.
Lesson learned. Always make sure the air filter is in good shape.
On a leap of faith, I picked it up on the day I drove my girls to Fairy Congress, in an outstandingly beautiful place in the Methow Valley that happens to be a long drive into the mountains. With 106 degree weather.
And you know what? Everything works perfectly.
Now I’d like to hear from YOU. When in your life have YOU needed to learn trusting at the speed of light? How did you bring yourself out of fear and into trust? The more alchemy we can learn from each other, the easier we can spread the word.