I live in Texas, the land of wide open spaces. The common mindset in my area is you have to have your own car. You can drive through any neighborhood within 15 miles and see the evidence of this thought everywhere. There are vehicles parked in driveways, along curbsides and even on lawns. So why am I giving up my car? I have three great reasons.
Reason One: Money, Money, and Money
I am single. I gave up my job to become my disabled mom’s full-time caregiver. I have just recently started a small home-based business and freelance writing. Money is scarce in my life at the moment. Owning a car, even one that is paid off, is expensive. You still have to pay for all of these things:
- Fuel-you can’t go anywhere without it.
- State inspection and registration-only once a year, but they’re not free.
- Insurance-month after month, forever.
- Maintenance-oil changes, tune-ups, tires, repairs and replacement parts.
These are expenses that I will gladly cut from my almost non-existent budget.
Reason Two: My Family
Last year, my children grew up and moved out. This minimized the amount of my personal travel a great deal. No more driving to sporting events, shopping malls or picking up friends.
My mother’s health has deteriorated as well. She has to have supplemental oxygen and requires the use of a walker or wheelchair depending on the situation. She no longer desires to leave home more than a few times a month. Mom owns a full-size pick-up truck, so it is easier to travel in her truck than in my car.
The recent changes in my family life make it really easy to give up my car.
Reason Three: My Health and the Health of Our Planet
I will be the first to admit that I am not fit. I do want to become fit and improve my health. By giving up my car, I will become motivated to walk to the corner store or to the homes of nearby family and friends.
Everyone knows that our planet could be a little healthier than it is now. Cars negatively impact the environment in several ways. They cause noise and air pollution, use natural resources and they even affect the quality of our water. One person giving up their car won’t fix these problems. But, I will no longer be adding to them.