“Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. Failure is something we can avoid only by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” – Denis Waitley
I am to be a bridesmaid in one of my best friend’s wedding in Nashville, and so of course Andy and I decided to book a campground instead of a hotel and use that as motivation to sprint through the Roameo finish line. We made a timeline of checkpoints for the weeks leading up to the trip, and we hit every single one of them. The electricity works, the plumbing works, the exterior is all sealed up and waterproof, we put several interior walls up, some of our vinyl flooring laid down, and a clean coat of white paint on the outside. We hooked it up to our rad new-to-us 2004 Nissan Xterra that we purchased over the weekend, and after quite a bit of tinkering, got all the running and brake lights working. The horizon was looking bright, we threw a futon in the floor and hit the road singing and cheering.
We only got about 30 minutes down the road before our new car overheated and our trip came to an anticlimactic end. My parents had to come out in the middle of the night and save us, thank God for them. My dad brought his truck and towed Roameo back home. My mom brought Andy’s car and switched us for the Xterra. We re-embarked on our journey in our trusted Honda Accord. For the record, this mishap was at least not Roameo’s fault. He totally would have made it. Our new car flew in from left field and popped all the air out of our balloon.
I think this was a very crucial moment for us. We sat in our car for a long time that night without speaking, before we called my parents for help, unable to roll any further, just staring out the windshield and silently individually struggling with the “why” of the situation. Why did this happen? Why did we work so hard for so long, only to get so close, only to fail? We thought the stars had aligned for our trip, but instead at the very last minute the rug was pulled out from under us. It took us a long time to shake off this overwhelming sense of failure, and find a way to look on the bright side, but we did it. It wasn’t our place to know the “why”, even if there was one. It was our place to lift our hearts up and thank God nothing worse had happened. Although we will never know it, there was a reason we weren’t able to pull that trailer this weekend. And anyway, this wasn’t the end of our grand Roameo journey, just the end of his literal one to Tennessee. Our trip was about our friend’s wedding, not Roameo, and the next day we arrived in Nashville safe and sound in one piece. And that’s what really mattered.
We have no idea what Roameo or our car’s future is at the moment, but for now, we will not let the uncertainty of it all cast a shadow over our trip. We have confidence and faith that we will figure out the next steps when we get back to Dallas, and not before. For now, we have a wedding to celebrate.