I have a desire.....it burns inside me......I can hardly stand the longing sometimes.
Wanna know what it is? I'll give you a clue. It has to do with cars.
First I have to give you some background. For those of you who've just joined the conversation, I grew up overseas. I lived abroad so much that I had to document the dates I'd lived in the U.S when my first children were born in Mexico in order to prove I was a real American citizen and therefore my children could qualify for American citizenship as well.
What does that have to do with my secret desire? Well, when living with my family in India we didn't have a car. Maintaining a personal vehicle was not cost effective with so much cheap public transportation around. Then I was at boarding school in Japan. I didn't go out of school much and when I did it was with teachers or staff in their cars.
After boarding school, I married my husband and we moved to Mexico. We didn't have our own car (we worked on a missionary farm) and the few times we went into town we got rides with other missionaries.
Three years into our marriage we moved back to the States. Traveling with us were our first three children. That's right--we had three children before our third anniversary! Anyway, back to the story. We were hard at work trying to make a new life for ourselves. Tom got a job, his dad generously gave us a Chevy Blazer so he could get to jobs, and I settled into life as a stay at home mom. Very quickly baby number four joined our family.
Those next few years flew by with little time for anything but surviving and babies. Before long baby number five showed up and we were making a cozy home for ourselves.
But their was a little something missing. I was a happily married mother of five and I COULD NOT DRIVE!
Shocking, I know! There had just been no time. You try learning to drive with three, four, five kids in the back seat. It's hard!
One day, a member of the Sunday School class I attended handed me some money and asked me to please go to driving school because she was "really worried about me". I immediately went to a driving school, paid the money and had three lessons with a driving instructor. At the end of the third lesson he declared me ready to take my driving test. But it would be another several months before I finally could. When I did, I completely failed parallel parking but I think the instructor felt sorry for me and she passed me anyway.
By the time I started driving with my very own license I was pregnant with number six. What a relief it was though to be able to get the kids and myself to church or the grocery store or the park or the....the list goes on and on.
But, there was still something lacking......
I didn't really miss it at first. But slowly, slowly the desire began to grow inside me.
I don't know how to drive a manual transmission! There! I said it! *hanging my head in shame*
When I watch people driving a stick shift it's like magic.--Like watching a dance. I love it! and I don't know how! It's a sad, empty little place in my soul.
Really, I know I'm being melodramatic. There are more important things in life--like saving babies in Africa or something. But.....if I could only have this special skill I would feel more complete.
Up until a year ago, we had been without a car for 3 years. We sold our car to pay for the move into the bush and took public transport. Finally, a wonderful church raised the money so we could get a bush-worthy vehicle. Our Landcruiser has been such a help but, alas, it is a manual. No driving for me.
Not that I could anyway. My dear, sweet, protective husband has declared very definitely that I will NOT be driving on these rural roads because there are too many perils. It's true. There are. But, oh, to not even have the option because I don't have the necessary talent. It kills me.
But! There's hope! Guess what I did today? I drove!!!! Tom let me take the wheel on the dirt road behind our house. I only stalled twice. I'm off to a great start! I'm so excited I could do a jig! In no time at all I feel I will have learned this elusive skill and be flying (well, driving) everywhere. I'll be one ability closer to whole. Wish me luck! and pray for Tom. He'll need it, I'm sure.
Is there a skill you wish you had, and in having would feel more complete?