Almost 9 years ago I ended a long term relationship. It was time for me to move on. I was not happy...and I knew I deserved better.
So, after 7 years - 7 long years, I packed my bags and left. For the most part, we knew what items in the apartment were originally mine, or his and we did a fairly easy, non-combative division of our processions. Only two items made us sit down and negotiate. Two items that both started with the letter C and each had 3 letters: CAT and CAR.
It was finally decided that I would get the four-legged freak cat and Mark would get the car. To this day I am not sure who won that battle!
So, after 5 years of living with someone, I found myself alone, in my own apartment, with some odd and ends furniture, and a cat. Once the shell shock wore off, I began to rebuild my life. I took extra care to turn my apartment into a home and took care to decorate and buy some nice new items. Cleo, the cat, and I became two single gals redefining who we were and what we wanted out of life. Happiness came much quicker than I ever imagined!
Right away I realized I needed a set of wheels. Driving a cat or taking the bus was not really an option. So, I began to look for a car. I found a sensible, reliable used four-door sedan. Which is funny, since when I began the search I wanted a spiffy, two-door sports car or a fun utility vehicle.
In keeping with tradition I decided to name my new car. My nice white, old-lady car was quickly named Leona. The name fit, and it was in honour of my Meme - Leona Brunet. My Meme was a feisty woman, she may have looked like any other elderly grandmother - but she was a ball of fire! Not many other grandmothers could wear black leather mini-skirts and embellished sweaters, and pull it off!
A few years earlier, when her health had been failing and my relationship with Mark was starting to fail, she had laughed in my face. Yep. Laughed in my face. I had told her that I thought that Mark and I would soon get married and start a family...and she laughed at me. She then told me that I was too good for that boy, and that I need to find true love and be true to myself.
So, when I named my new car - I thought of my Meme. I thought of how she was confident, reliable, strong-willed and a fighter. I thought of her last moments of life, when I held her hand and she took her last breath. I can still feel that breath in me to this day.
I thought of the moment I decided to leave Mark and how I took a deep breath when I finally committed to my decision. I thought of the deep breath I took when I confronted Mark and ended our relationship. I thought of the deep breath I took when I unlocked my new apartment door the first time.
Then, I thought about how a new set of wheels was a big step in regaining my independence and my freedom. I thought of how this new car represented the new journey ahead of me. I thought of how strong and wonderful my Meme had been...and I then named my car Leona.
Leona served me well. She never broke down and did wonders in helping me explore the new world around me.
But Leona, the 3 letter C word, was getting old. My needs and wants in a car changed. So, on this day 7 years ago I purchased a new car. I donated Leona to a young family who really needed her and purchased a brand new, shiny green Z24 Cavalier. Power everything. Sun roof. 5-speed. Zoom. Zoom. Zoom.
I was sad to see Leona go, but I was so excited about my new set of wheels. My nameless set of wheels.
As I drove my brand new car home, I thought of how far I had come in less than 2 years. How much my rocky, almost abusive relationship with Mark had hurt and damaged my spirit. I thought of how much I had did to rediscover myself and to move on in my life. I thought of how happy I was at that moment and how optimistic I was about my life. I was never going to look back. I was finally totally ready to start my new life. As I sped down the highway, with the tunes blaring and the sun roof wide open, I was finally over my relationship and totally ready to move on.
Just then a song came on the radio. A song by Jo Dee Messina. Bye Bye. WOW, did that song really encompass and and reflect my current life situation at the time.
As I pulled into my parking spot, I had a smile on my face and a vow to never look back...and I knew tight then, that my new car would be christened "Joey".
In honour of Joey's birthday, here is the theme song from that time of my life...and I never did look back!
Happy Birthday Joey!!! You are one great car!