Last week I was running late for a non-profit breakfast celebration for a domestic violence shelter.
I live about thirty minutes from civilization and by civilization I mean a location that has a Target.
As I was speeding and rocking out to Lizzo, I finally arrived at my destination only to find that the parking lot was overflowing.
I grossly underestimated how large of an event this was.
I went up and down the lot aisles hoping that out of some twist of fate that there was an open spot.
All of the sudden the heavens opened, and the sunshine led me to what appeared to be a vacant spot.
Could this be?
I started to turn my vehicle towards the obviously divine intervention spot when that bright thing in the sky hit the side mirror of the truck beside the spot and blinded me immediately.
That did not just happen.
Only it did.
It did happen.
As I slowly back out of the scene I saw the damage that my Honda Pilot had done to the big bad Ram truck.
I also realized why the spot was vacant.
There was a service vehicle that had pulled through the spot and taken up both.
I quickly found a spot and ran back to take a picture of the truck and plate before running inside to tell on myself.
I was hoping to find the owner, but the front desk did not want to interrupt the breakfast that had ultimately already begun to a full house.
I walked back outside only to find that the truck had left.
Not only did I hit a truck, I left the scene of the crime.
Just cuff me now!
I called the police and began to give the operator a lot of information all at once.
A bit of verbal vomit.
I do that when I’m nervous.
She stopped me and asked me if the location was at “XYZ” arena.
I said, yes.
How did she know that?
I didn’t tell her that yet!
And your name is Nanci Wilson? She asked.
Also had not managed to tell her that yet.
Yes. That’s me but how…
She continues to tell me that it was already called in and that the vehicle that I had hit was an unmarked Sheriff’s vehicle.
Of course, it was.
My anxiety level went to level 100 as I kept verbally spewing to the poor operator.
Ma’am let me go ahead and patch you through to the officer that took the initial report.
A male voice greeted me through my cell phone.
I hit the vehicle and then I left the scene of the crime. Oh my God, I left the scene of the crime. Am I a criminal now? I don’t know how to do this. I did this all wrong. I am sorry, sir.
Nanci…Nanci – he said laughing – It happens. You called it in. Can I have you send a picture of the damage to your car to my cell phone for the report?
Yes, of course!
I proceeded to send this picture:
Yes, that is my vehicle with a BEER BOTTLE IN FRONT.
Could this day get any worse?!
I immediately called the officer back and began to rattle about how that bottle was not mine and how I don’t drink and how I was not raised like that and and and….
He laughed and said – you’re fine! No charges or tickets for any of this. Go get your vehicle fixed and have a great day.
Look, sometimes owning up to something stinks.
ESPECIALLY when it IS your fault.
Doing the right thing is not always easy, but always right.
EVEN when it sucks.
Accountability and taking responsibility show YOUR character far more than the mistake at hand.
So, you screwed up on that report.
Make note so that you don’t do it again and MOVE ON.
You reacted less than an adult to a situation.
Apologize. Do better next time.
Life isn’t about tally marking all of the mistakes you have made.
It’s about learning, growing, adapting, and evolving into the adult that you want to be each and every single day.
Sometimes you’re the Honda Pilot and sometimes you’re the Dodge Ram.
….but that still isn’t my beer!