Thursday, October 16, 2008

Breaking Down

These are my rambling thoughts from the other day...

Yesterday I ventured out with my little man to hit up the local grocery stores to score some deals. While on my way home I was sitting at a red light when my radio just suddenly shut off. I glanced over at my radio and "Low Battery" was flashing on my radio. I waited patiently for the light to change and once it did, every light that is on my dashboard came on. I immediately called Jason in a panic. He was trying to calm me down, but for some reason I lost it. I had 3 gallons of milk and a baby in my van and was only a short distance from our house. I just knew that I was going to be stuck in the middle of the road and have every person honking at me. Before I turned into our neighborhood, my air-conditioning unit shut off. I barely got into the driveway before my van died. Jason had told me to leave the van in the driveway in case we could not get it restarted and needed to jump it off. I was glad that I was home, but I was a bit worried about my other two children who were still at school.

Jason called to tell me that he was on his way home and I called my dad. I have always called my dad when something goes wrong. He reassured me that everything would be okay and asked me to go out and try to start my van. Well, I tried that, but nothing happened. He told me that Jason would be able to jump start my van (or we could just take the battery out and haul it down to the store) and that everything would be okay.

After Jason got home, Jackson and I loaded up in the van and it started. I was so pleased and we were on our way to the auto parts store. The store was less than a mile or two from our house, so I felt pretty confident that we would make it. That was until, my radio shut off at the end of my subdivision and the air shut off after I turned out onto the main road. I made it as far as I could on a 4 lane divided highway where the speed limit is 55 mph. (And boy were those cars going that and then some). Fortunately I made it into a parking lot before dying. The unfortunate part was that I turned across two lanes of traffic forcing me to cross back when I was restarted. Jason jumped me off and I took off crossing the lanes of traffic. I made it a few feet and died on the side of the road.

I was absolutely panic stricken. I like to think that I would know what to do in situations like these, but I always freeze up! Jason pulled in behind me and realized that he needed to be facing the other direction of the oncoming traffic to jump start me. Eventually he pulled up in front of me (after having to throw his truck into 4 wheel drive) and started the process of jumping me off again. Well, this time it did not work! Jackson and I were sitting in the van (there was not enough room on the side of the road to open my car door to get out) with the sun beaming down on us with no air! (And of course, this had to be the hottest day this week - the temp. was 86 degrees). At one point, Jackson completely lost it! I have never heard my baby cry like that and I hope that I never do! It was absolutely horrible!

After about ten minutes, my van started back up and I did my best to make it the few extra feet that I needed to. I could see the store, but the four lanes and traffic were all in my way. I amazingly pulled into the parking lot and got Jackson out of the van. He was drenched in sweat and his cheeks were so red. We went inside and cooled off while they checked the heartbeat of my battery. The battery was dead, so they changed it out for me. It was covered under my warranty since I had just bought the thing in March. Before pulling out, the guy said something about my alternator, but said that we should be fine.

Later on that afternoon, I picked the kids up from school and we stopped at CVS. I love shopping at CVS! I bought 4 bags of Halloween candy. The retail price was 12.99, but after my coupons and ExtraCare Bucks, I paid a whopping .90! Woo Hoo!

My joy was shortly lived, because on the way back home, my van started acting up AGAIN! Since the auto parts store was on the way home, I pulled back in and they found out that my battery did not have a heartbeat at all! I had only driven about 5-10 miles since getting my new battery. This visit was a little longer. I was there for an hour!!! With the kids!!! In the heat!!! And no hubby!!!

They couldn't send me home, because I didn't have a battery that worked. Finally, they charged my battery and told me that it was more than likely my alternator and that I needed to have it fixed immediately. They didn't have the part, nor could they install it for me if they did.

Jason took it to the shop last night, while I stayed home with the kids. They could not understand why we were not going to church. Fortunately we have some great friends that followed Jason to the shop (standing by ready to jump start when needed).

I am happy to report that my van is now parked in my garage with a new alternator. I am not too thrilled with the money spent, but hey, I have a van that can drive us around now!

I just don't want to break down again! I think that 3 times in one day is just about enough to drive me crazy!

4 comments:

The Honea Bees said...

I am so glad you were able to fix the van. I think I would have paniked too...it's one thing to break down, but with the kids too. Yuck!
I think it is funny that you called your dad...I do the same thing all of the time! Sometimes before I call my hubby. Daddy is more sympathetic amd easier to get on the phone!:) Don't tell my hubby...

Jamey said...

Bless your heart! That's something that should not happen to a mom with a baby in the car. Boo.

Glad everything is fixed now. I know those hours without a working vehicle were very frustrating.

Stefanie said...

I am happy to hear that the van is fixed. I know exactly what you feel like. My car is having transmission issues lately, and right now is sitting in my driveway. It will hopefully go to the shop tomorrow. My car seemed to only have issues with me, which made me mad. Danny would drive it and it would be fine. I just pray that it can be fixed and hopefully it is minor.

Stacy said...

I hate that you broke down! That's scary, but at least you weren't far from home! I'm glad you were able to get it fixed so quickly!