The other day I was driving on Main Street when I came upon a slow moving car, following a slow bulldozer trying to make its way in traffic. The three of us, and others, stopped in line for a red light.
That’s when I saw it.
The license plate.
The vanity plate.
It wasn’t anything special. And it took me a moment to figure it out.
And then I realized. I’ve seen that plate before. On a different vehicle. Years ago.
And then I realized…
It must be driven by one of them. A member of that family; his family.
That license plate is a vanity plate belonging to the family of a former boyfriend.
And I’m driving right behind them.
It’s been about 15 years since I broke up with him and his family. And every now and then I see him about town. And every time, I get a little snobby. A little proud. A little taller. A little How Do You Like Me Now? attitude.
I know I shouldn’t. I know it’s vain. But let’s be real. If he was a keeper, I would have kept him. Right?
There’s a reason (or two… or ten) why that relationship ended, and I don’t for a moment miss it. I love the person I’ve become since then. But every now and then, I’m reminded that even I am capable of making really stupid choices.
The point is, to pick up and move on. And I’ve done that. Every now and then it’s okay to look back and see how far I’ve come, how I’ve changed, how I’ve grown.
But every now and then, I guess I get a little arrogant. I don’t mean to. But every now and then, I take a little pride that on those few-and-far-between days that he spies me out and about, I still look better than I did. I still stand up for myself, and am nobody’s doormat.
Most of all, the dreams we had 15 years ago… well, mine are coming true. And since he’s still in this general area, I know for a fact his are not.
The light turned green. And in that split-second writer’s inspiration that I get, I thought it was very apropo as I accelerated and drove around the slow moving, road-blocking tractor and car making their turn down another road.
Did they recognize me? I have no idea. I’m not one to keep looking in the rear-view mirror. I just prayed as I passed and happily thought There but for the Grace of God go I.