After almost a month of being a single-car family, we have purchased a second vehicle. As fun as it was for me to continually plan on running errands and then be reminded (over and over again) that he’d have the car at work, it’s nice for that phase to be over.
So, if you’d had a conversation with me about a family vehicle a year or two ago, or even two months ago, I almost certainly would’ve told you that minivans were not for me. I have never been a fan of minivans. I like small sedans. I like my Civic. I don’t like to drive anything much bigger than it, so maneuvering a giant vehicle around has never been my idea of a good time.
Before your righteous indignation prompts you to rush to the defense of your beloved minivan, let me just jump ahead and tell you that our new vehicle is, in fact, a minivan.
I tried to resist. I wanted a crossover vehicle because it seemed like a happy medium between something too big and something too small. My husband is a peach, so he humored me and scoured Craigslist for crossovers. He found a Nissan Rogue here in town and we took a look at it. It was beautiful! Unfortunately, it didn’t feel bigger enough than our dearly departed Versa.
After briefly considering SUVs (after all, they look so much cooler than minivans), we rejected the idea because we don’t want to pay for all that gas guzzling.
My husband found us an Odyssey in beautiful shape. He let me know that the owner had assured him that it had “only been driven by women,” so it was in good condition. We went down to Indiana to try it out and bought it with our insurance money that evening.
I’ve already used it to drive my friend and her baby places with us a couple of times, and I have to say that loading up two infants into carseats is no sweat with a sweet ride like my van.
I am that mom now. The minivan driving, “we’ll take my car,” always-has-a-bandaid mom.
It really sank in on Independence Day. We were at a little party with some friends, and having a great time. (How could we not with Grillers and veggie dogs hot off the grill, adults to socialize with, and three flavors of homemade ice cream for dessert?) It was all going swimmingly until reality hit. Apparently leaving the house to go to a cookout at an 8.5 month old’s bedtime and behaving like a normal human after 6 p.m. cannot be accomplished with impunity. After changing a very dirty diaper on a very angry baby, we decided it might be best to head home despite the hours still between us and the fireworks that were meant to be the culmination of the evening’s festivities. So, we packed up our stuff (i.e. bottles, baby shoes, assorted dirty diapering accessories) and said our goodnights. In broad daylight. On the 4th of July.
Of course we could hear everyone having a great time in the back yard as we reached our super roomy, practical, and very, very parenty minivan. In that moment I realized that a minivan is not just a vehicle; it’s a lifestyle. Even worse, it hit me that I’d be living the minivan lifestyle even if I was leaving in my sweet little Civic.
The moral of the story is, I guess, that if you have to leave the party early, you might as well leave in something with plenty of legroom, zone climate control, and more cup holders than you can count.