Fix Yourself!

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Being a late bloomer was never just about the ugly duckling who just found out makeup is fun. I’m a worrier with a fear of failing in front of others. I don’t care how many times I screw up in the privacy of my home, but having people witness me fail gets my anxiety up. I guess that’s why I was never into sports. Growing up, I never tried anything I wasn’t already sure I’d be good at.
Unfortunately, there are a ton of things that people do every day that I put off as long as possible, because my neurotic little mind says, “It seems too easy. I must be missing a step and I will surely embarrass myself in public by being the only person ever to fail at this.” I’ve seen my mom get her hand too close to the water jet at a car wash and have her skin blasted away, so I know that there are wrong ways to use a car wash. Because of this, for many years I would only wash my car with a hose and rag at home. I was too nervous to be seen doing something wrong in such a public place. I mean, everybody can use a car wash, right? I taught myself to tie my shoes while hiding behind a recliner, taught myself to swim using a beach ball, and at 17 I had my mother teach me driver’s ed (I didn’t want to take the course with all the kids in my grade, and I REALLY didn’t want to take it with the kids in the next grade). I avoid so many things because there’s no way to try them out privately.
One of the big things I fear: being a woman talking to a mechanic. I’ve never had one take advantage of my ignorance. Instead, the one time I tried to deal with one on my own, I got the brush-off. They told me they couldn’t do the work that day, and because I have my household’s only vehicle, they said they’d give me a call when they could fit me in. Luckily, it wasn’t something major, because I never heard from them again. I’ve been the only woman in an auto parts store, eyed up and down by old men leaning on the counter, and had the clerk try to sell me a $50 kit when all I asked for was a $20 component. I hate that feeling.
My goal this year, in addition to reading more books, growing out my hair and getting better with makeup, is to learn more about my truck and how to fix minor problems. I have a taillight that keeps going out and a rearview mirror that got jarred off by these awful potholes from the Texas floods. The taillight isn’t a huge problem, but I’ve never had to change a whole mirror before. The mirror saga will be told in an upcoming post. Right now, just let me say I am feeling inadequate, inexperienced, but improved. I can’t finish the job right this second, but I know what it’s going to take and I’ve learned so many things already.
One thing stands in my way…

The final of three nuts holding my mirror in place, too rusty to turn and to awkward to get leverage.  Got a deep 10mm socket I can borrow?
The final of three nuts holding my mirror in place, too rusty to turn and to awkward to get leverage. Got a deep 10mm socket I can borrow?
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