How I made money for buying a car


 

It all started on a dark frigid Tuesday night in 2018. I was driving home from a friend's winter concert when a deer forcefully struck the front of my car. At first, I was calm before I realized my worst fear had just occurred. In a panicked daze, I called my parents because I had no idea the extent of the damage to my car. After I arrived at home, my vehicle venture and difficult work started. 

My parents purchased my first car for my sister and I, it was a great deal and very nice for a 16 year old as a first car. Although it had some little problems here and there, it seemed brand new to me as a new driver. However, my sister and I sharing the car was unfortunate because we had to split the driving half and half. My sister was furious when she found out the damage to our car that night. Although she cares about me she was more frustrated than sympathetic. Which is very understandable considering it was her only form of transportation. There were no back ups or rentals we could drive so the repairs were up to me.  

Fortunately, my dad is an engineer so he was able to steer me in the write direction of parts to order and the anatomy of the car.  Throughout the two month process I worked almost everyday dismantling the car that was almost totaled. Along the way I would constantly find different parts that were broken that I was not aware of, it was like a big puzzle with a bunch of missing pieces. With loads of help from my dad I reassembled the front portion of my car with the new parts intact. Sometimes just when we thought we were done we would find pieces we forgot to assemble and would have to disassemble back to where it was supposed to go. However, there were some parts that were too expensive so there’s numerous amounts of cosmetic damage. Driving my car now is very embarrassing with all of the concerned or witty looks I receive driving through town. Although I went through many problems while restoring my car I learned a lot from it. I became extremely consistent on going out to work with any free time I had because I knew I couldn’t drive again until it was finished. As long as you have motivating factors you can get anything done. Another thing I learned was patience because taking a car apart and putting it back together can be very time consuming and frustrating, especially when you can be relaxing watching tv. 

As I continued to drive my damaged car around, I came to a realization that I had the ability to buy my own, undamaged car. Luckily, I had already been hard at work for the past three summers. However, I hadn’t acquired enough funds yet, so I started applying for jobs for winter break. I worked diligently every day filling out applications and attending interviews. My persistence paid off, I was offered a job at Nike, Walmart, and Bath and Body Works. I then made a list of pros and cons of each and ended up picking Walmart based on wage and location. 

Not only had I never worked for a big corporation, I also had never worked in retail. This was an enormous struggle I had to overcome because there is so much more to learn and so many more moving parts than a normal job. I am normally a person who catches onto things really quick, however, it took me almost the entire two months of break to learn everything I needed to know. This job by far has been the hardest thing I've ever done mentally and physically. The job was physically tiring because you are constantly walking around, climbing ladders, and bending over to stock the shelves. Additionally, I am a college athlete, so after working nine hours a day I would have to go to the gym for 2 hours to complete my workouts. Which was physically and mentally exhausting because that was my schedule everyday. Along with physical exhaustion, mental health was also a big struggle for me working. Walmart customers are generally rude or inconsiderate towards the workers as I quickly learned. This taught me how to overcome adversity and to ignore people's ignorance and anger. In addition to overcoming customers adversity, I also had to rise above the hardest thing of all, which was COVID. Walmart does not require customers to wear a mask, so numerous people would come ask me questions everyday up close and personal with no face coverings. However, as an employee I have to answer their question and cannot say anything about them not wearing a mask, so I was potentially exposed everyday. Experiencing these situations everyday just taught me to be more cautious and to constantly perform proper hygiene procedures.

Following all of my hard work, I was finally done and had made enough money to buy a car and still have plenty left to support me at college. So once again, I used the persistence that I have continued to learn throughout this long process. I would check for car deals everyday near me and make lists based on their features, problems, and prices. Finally, when I had a big enough variety I went to test drive the best candidates. Within the next two days, I had bought my first car at the age of 18! All of the late nights at work and early mornings at the gym were finally worth it. 

Sadly, there was still one fear I had not overcome that I was not aware of. The fear of the deer. This fear didn’t arise until I was one the financially responsible for all of the repairs and insurance. So, anytime I am driving at night I go under the speed limit, and anytime I remotely see something from the corner of my eye I have a mini heart-attack. Hopefully, time will help the fear disappear as I get older and my memory fades.

As you can see, I have somehow managed to turn an unfortunate event into a blessing. I took the worst and used that as my motivation. I worked nonstop over winter break and 3 summers to get where I am now and I don’t regret one bit of it. You can achieve anything if you work hard enough it just takes motivation.

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