yesterday i sent $609 to my dad's paypal account. it was the last payment i would ever have to give to my parents for lending me $936 to repair extensive car damages...
at the beginning of March i crashed the left rear side of my best friend's car.
let's back track though. my best friend Elia was heading out of town for a few days and she lent me her car that she always kept on campus– a bright blue toyota corolla in mediocre condition. yeah she smelled like cigs and ran a little funky, but she drove like a champ. i remember when Elia handed me the keys it felt amazing, like i could do or go anywhere in the WORLD. you have to remember that there's literally nothing to do in Oberlin. so yeah, i felt like i was the coolest. i literally bragged to everyone that i had a car now and would drive it for one minute just because i thought it was cool. i was obviously a little nervous because i knew my driving track record and i'd never really driven around campus before, but i was waaaay more excited for the freedom than anything else.
the first night i had the car i drove to McDonalds and got 20 chicken nuggets. bliss. i'd have the car for a couple more days... i thought... i can't wait to take this thing around! with the car i felt amazing. like i could go and do things literally whenever i wanted. i've always had chronic stomach pain, so instead of going out late or anything i'd usually go to my friend's place or just stay the night in my room. but the first night with the car i decided to go to a late study session at the library. i could leave when i wanted to and i knew that having the car was great because i could just hop in a drive home in a minute rather than walking for 15 in the freezing cold. i was in heaven. i called Elia around 11:45p. she laughed and told me she was so happy i was using the car. "have you crashed it yet??" she teased. "NO!" i laughed.
the following day was a Friday. i don't remember much of the details other than the fact that i really had to print something out and i was running behind to get to class. in a rush, i jumped in the car and zoomed over to the King parking lot where my class would be. all of a sudden i hit the brakes. i was about two inches past the parking lot, when i tried to turn into it is when i realized i overshot the entrance. for two seconds (the most costly two seconds of my life) i glanced in front of me, to the right, to the left, and behind me. no one was directly behind me so going around 15 mph i reversed backwards. it was right at that second that a giant white truck, who was actually in front of me, took a left hand turn into the parking lot. for what felt like a scene in literal slow motion i could feel the intense scrape of the truck colliding with the back of the weak-ass toyota corolla. my mouth hung open and my vision went blurry as i was literally realizing that i was crashing my best friends car into an actual pick up truck.
in a panicked frenzy i shoved the car into Drive and turned right into the next open parking lot. i parked the car and was literally hyperventilating in the front seat. FREAKING out. it would be one thing if i crashed my own damn car like i have about a million times. but it wasn't and i had no way of knowing how Elia was going to react to this. so many horrible thoughts went through my head. i was terrified. i was angry at myself. i was so disappointed in what i did and the two second misjudgment that i made.
immediately i called my dad. it was actually pretty funny because he was on the road. he was on a mini east-coast tour with his friend and guitarist Drew. he puts me on speaker as he's driving and i literally just start sobbing. "I CRASHED MY BEST FRIENDS CARRRRRR!"
after a few minutes my dad actually got me to calm down. i always call him in stressful situations because he relaxes me in the moment. i was worrying about a million things at that very moment– the car damage, her feelings, our trust, my stupidity. my dad told me "Just breathe." and i did. then i called my mom briefly and she went, "How much is this going to cost us???" i hadn't even thought about that shit yet.
the parking lot i had turned into was actually directly in front of the campus Safety and Security building. since the truck i hit was white and looked like an Oberlin College truck, i thought the best way to figure out who i hit was by contacting them through the S&S office. maybe they could figure out what happened, who it was i hit, and the damages that would ensue.
goddd that moment was fucking awful. i remember going into the S&S building literally just hating my life so much lmao. i called my best friend Molly and she drove over to stay and console me. i called Elia's roommate and my good friend Izzy to tell her what went down and pick up the car from my unlawful possession. S&S was as helpful as they could be. they basically reported the incident and sent me on my way, letting me know that if they heard anything from the truck driver they would "inform me." i never got a call back.
i was so happy Izzy took the damn car because i needed to just erase it from my memory. i was so excited literally 1 day ago. i was excited because i had freedom and then i just fucking ruined it so hard. i made a stupid choice when i should've kept driving and turned around. it wasn't worth it. and you know how much the damages were??? around a grand. now if i'm gonna be honest that actually isn't terrible. i was expecting a lot more. but it was still a hefty amount of cash for me at the time. i had about $500 when it happened and i didn't even know at that point that we were in the midst of dealing with a global pandemic.
that Friday after i left the S&S building, i went to stay at Molly's. we got some food and she chilled with me and consoled me for a long time. i called Elia up like 10 times but each time it went straight to voicemail. those hours without her voice with complete agony. i thought of every worst possible scenario.
she doesn't wanna be my friend. she's gonna hate me. she's gonna be so pissed about her car. what the fuck happens with her insurance? how could i do this to her?
it was several hours later when she called me from her car speaker phone. when i heard her voice say, "Hey!" i burst into tears. i was like sad that i crashed her car and so happy to hear her voice on the other end at the same time. i apologized so much. sorry after sorry. she seemed completely unfazed, "Bro don't worry, please. We'll get it fixed. Take it out for another spin!" i started laughing uncontrollably. fuck no i'd never take it for another spin lmao. but i think i was obviously upset because i crashed someone's car but especially because it was my best friend's car. i was so terrified of losing her. i was so terrified she didn't want me in her life anymore. in her mind, that wasn't even a thought.
my body had gone into this like protective mode. i couldn't think clearly until i had spoken with her and i couldn't feel comfortable about the situation until it was completely put to rest. i remember thinking afterwards about what was next? the money, the insurance, the school's involvement, blah blah blah. and then a couple days later i was in the ER. now, in addition to this fucking car thing, i was like when the fuck is my body gonna get better? what's wrong with me? and THEN covid fucking happened and i started freaking the fuck out about when i was going to get money to pay off these repairs and how i'd make any money before i went back to school????
my parents were extremely generous. when i was released from the hospital, we were issued a statement about the damage costs which totaled about $936. my parents sent the money to Elia and i was to pay them back whenever i could and in installments if needed. i had around $450 or so that i gave them as money i was supposed to receive from my tax returns but i still needed to pay off the rest. so after my body got better, i went to work. i got two part-time jobs as businesses began opening up and eventually made a bit over a grand last thursday the 30th. i then sent my dad the difference in just one installment. i felt so much better paying it all then bit by bit.
the last payment made me really feel like i could get this issue completely off my chest. same with this blog post of course :) i crashed my best friend's car and it happened. i crashed my best friend's car and i learned i will never use someone else's vehicle AGAIN because two seconds... wasn't worth MONTHS and MONTHS of utter stress and agony lmao.
but most importantly, i learned that when i crashed my best friend's car, it all turned out to be okay.