Freedom at Last

October 10, 2017
By , Lambertville, MI

To whom it may concern,

     

I felt trapped. Everything I did was decided by whether I could find someone who could give me a ride. I was never in control. My whole life it’s felt like I’ve had a ball and chain encasing my ankles, stopping me from doing things I enjoy like dinner with my family, or hanging out with friends. Until now. On a squelching hot August day I finally was free. I had passed with flying colors and was now a bird with wheels.
     

They’re old worn down Jeep liberty keys, with a silver whistle with my initial engraved on it. The flowy faux leather fringe gives it character against the withered plastic and buttons. Passed down from generation to generation, it symbolizes how much I’ve grown and how much my family has changed. From carseat to the all-famous shotgun, from now on I'll take the driver's seat. They are freedom and independence all attached to a simple silver key ring.
     

The smell of steaming asphalt fills my nostrils as I sit on my friend’s steep and rickety porch awaiting the arrival of my mother. Blood red, royal blue, canary yellow, and forest green cars zip past in a mixture of shapes, none being the crisp white, 2014 Ford Escape that belonged to my mother.
       

The minutes tick by sitting on the dirt laden steps, listening to the rustling of leaves against the old knobby tree bark. In the distance, you can hear the sound of engines revving and roaring over the bleating of goats and the bray of the donkey. If you look to your right you can catch a glimpse of the slightly overgrown grass surrounding the pasture in a sea of emerald. The silhouette of a ramshackle barn can be seen marring the idyllic landscape.
     

She arrived with a skid. I could see her perfectly painted nails and seamless clothes behind the steering wheel. Her features were mangled in an unreadable expression as I entered the vehicle. “Now I’m running late because of you.” Were the first words she said as I buckled my seat belt. “Why couldn't you find someone else to pick you up.” I had heard those words thousands of times before.
     

Nowadays all I hear is the purring of the engine mixed with the Patsy Cline: Greatest hits CD as I jolt down stoney, unpaved backroads. The corn and bean fields that surround me create a Hallmark worthy scene. The stretching farmlands with hundreds of perfect rows as far as the eye could see. The setting sun in the west creates a blissful ambiance against the color changing leaves of the autumn weather.






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