"Mom, I need your credit card. Get ready, I'm on my way to get you." That isn't exactly how I planned to begin my Saturday morning, but I wanted to find out why my credit card was needed so I prepared myself ready to be gotten by my oldest daughter.
We headed to a local car rental business where she had arranged to rent a convertible for the weekend. Yes, I said convertible. We were enjoying a Chamber of Commerce day in Tampa, and she thought it would be fun to ride around town in a convertible taking in the gorgeous weather. So, I plopped my credit card down on the counter and gave my consent for this serendipitous moment. (Actually, I didn't pay for the moment, she had to have a major credit card to rent the car...she paid for the moment.)
We went outside and inspected the gleaming white convertible. The young woman from the rental office very carefully explained the process of making the car topless. Wow, things have really changed in the convertible department. Years ago, it was usually a two-person process to make the change. This particular car was a snap of two locks and a push of a button and, within seconds, the car was topless.
Caron and her son hopped in the car, fastened their seat belts and took off for a fun-filled weekend of feeling the wind whipping through their hair, wind brushing over their faces and basking in the jealous stares of other drivers as they sped by.
They came to our house the next day sporting sunburns! Seems that one of the benefits of having a regular hardtop model is protection from the sun. The next problem was sore muscles from the tight suspension of the car, the fact that they were much lower to the ground than her regular car and every bump and rough spot in the roadway had been felt by them.
After the convertible weekend, Caron made a proclamation: "I will never buy a convertible." She came to that realization after only a weekend of sunburn and sore muscles. But, she was so glad she had rented it. Why? She made a memory with her son that day. She acted on a wild hair and she and Caleb sported around in someone else's car and enjoyed spending those few hours laughing and just being together doing something a little bit out of the box.
I'm proud of her for seizing that moment with her son. To some it may have been a waste of money but money can be made back. Lost memories can't. Caleb will remember this day and know that his mommy wasn't afraid to be spontaneous and do something fun. I wish that I had seized moments with my children that are now forever lost.
As children are going through various stages of growth, parents often say that they learn things from their children. My children are grown and I am still learning from them. They are so attentive to grab hold of special moments and cherish the times with their boys. They aren't afraid to be silly or get their hair wet or mess up their makeup. Those are lessons that I learned too late except that God provided a second chance when He gave me grandchildren.
So, the convertible weekend was a reminder to me that sometimes I need to live life outside my usual box. I need to do something unexpected. I need to grab the memory-making-moments and run with them, letting the wind blow through my hair. I can always brush it back into place.