How A Little Screw Tried to Screw Me Up

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i pride myself on living the mantra my mom instilled in me since i could remember things…”we are strong, independent, resourceful women!” i also pride myself in embodying the new wifestyle’s manifesto and mission to be an equal partner in my marriage without living the outdated expectations of women and wives. sometimes i fail at this.

all of these capable feelings melted away for about 3 minutes on monday when my tire pressure light went on as i got to the grocery store. i got out and circled the car and there it was…that left rear tire’s rim was basically on the ground, along with my calm and collected spirit.

i have no idea how the tire didn’t blow out on my 27 mile trip to and from the airport after dropping my husband off or on the way to the grocery store. my husband wasn’t answering my calls because he was 30,000 feet above me or something but it wasn’t helping the situation.

i immediately started panicking because it really looked like i shouldn’t drive on it and i had these terrible images that if i did drive, the rim would slash through the tire, the car would fly into an oncoming car, i would die and wouldn’t be wearing clean underwear. i blame watching lifetime movies as a teen for the main reason why my mind flashes to the worst thing possible.

lifetime movie


the time a tire blew on a car i was in, it was 2 am and took 6 malaysian men to fix it over the course of an hour! nope. i wasn’t attempting to jack the car up on my own.

i spent the next 3 minutes in a full on state of panic not knowing what to do and desperately wishing my husband was with me. i felt like he would know exactly what to do and i could happily march inside and buy my asparagus and tampons and be on my merry way, if only he was there to deal with this and not me.

towards the end of those 3 minutes, i started regaining my composure that i’m fully capable of handling this situation. my rationale starting setting in that leaving my car in a parking garage of a grocery story for 3 days wasn’t a good idea.

i developed a game plan outloud in the parking garage:

1) go in and get your asparagus (and some chocolate because you deserve it, you capable bad-ass) because you’re already here

2) find the nearest gas station

3) don’t cry. it’s just a tire.

4) fill up the tire

5) send a picture to your husband and post on instagram that you are new wifestyling the shit out of this tire

6) go to the tire-fixin’ place first thing in the morning

i followed my plan to a T and even though the air supply at the gas station looked like it’d be involved in a murder in the 1970s, it gobbled up my four quarters and spewed out air.

flat tiresneak peek at the birthday boots my husband got me because it’s my birthday month! i love them.

back to the point of this whole article…

there were two thoughts that entered my mind:

“things are easier to deal with when you have your partner around.”

“since when did i become so dependent on needing my husband around!?”

this is absolutely where i was, reverting back to ‘damsel in distress status and only my prince charming could save me. and he better be shirtless and on a white horse.’ ew gross. that’s not me and that’s not what i’m about because i am a capable woman. that being said, the first statement still rings true because life can sure be a lot easier to cope with when my partner is by my side!

i think it can be easy to get comfortable relying on your spouse and in many ways this is okay because you support each other. my only word of caution (mostly to myself) is not to become so comfortable relying on your husband that you lose confidence in your ability to handle things.

when i got to the tire place yesterday morning (ps. america’s tires will patch your tire for freeeee and they are real nice), it turns out that a little screw decided to embed itself in my fleshy tire for fun. screw you, screw for making me question myself! also, thanks little screw for the reminder that i can stand on my own two feet, even if those feet are happier dealing with things next to a certain other two feet.


even though life is more fun and things are easier to deal with when someone is by your side, remember that you are fully capable of being your own trusty stead…shirtless or not!

1) last time you had car issues?
2) when was a time you had wished your partner was with you to help the situation?
3) did you watch lifetime movies? did they make you extra paranoid?


  1. Paula Howley

    January 14, 2015 at 11:26 am

    LOVE the new boots. I want a pair.

    This subject is as important as equal pay for equal work as far as I’m concerned. It’s about having the know-how to take care of yourself.

    This MORNING my husband noticed my back tire was completely FLAT when he took out the garbage. He put the spare on and I called Canadian Tire to make an appointment for new tires today.

    NOW, I totally should have gone out there and MADE HIM SHOW ME how to do this. I WANT TO KNOW HOW TO DO THIS. I don’t want to be dependant on a man for this. (But I was still in my pj’s and it was so warm in the house……. LAME!!!!!!!)

    Someone should TOTALLY be giving classes for women on how to change your tire, how to change your oil, how to jump your battery- these very basic things that for some reason, nobody thinks we need to know.
    I’m going to make certain that my daughter knows how to do this stuff. It makes me MAD that I don’t.

    Put this on the list for stuff to do this summer when I have spare time for a spare tire.
    Paula Howley recently posted…Head Start Public Speaking For Kids Week 11- Speech PAR-TAY!!!!

    • chelsea

      January 14, 2015 at 2:57 pm

      thanks for all pieces of your comment, paula! i super love my new boots so thanks for seconding this 🙂

      that’s SO crazy that this happened to you this morning-nuts! i absolutely get what you mean about wanting to know how and not having to be dependent but sometimes warmth wins. i’m very happy to hear you have a goal of this for the summer! maybe once i learn i should make a video tutorial so every knows how to do it!

  2. Emma

    January 14, 2015 at 11:43 am

    I’m with ya on this! There are so many things that I don’t know how to do myself, and instead of learning, I just rely on my boyfriend to handle them for me. Maybe we need to start a list: “Things women need to know how to do.”
    Emma recently posted…Forget Road Trip Singalongs. Talk About Money In The Car.

    • chelsea

      January 14, 2015 at 2:58 pm

      ohhh we should totally start a ‘things women need to know how to do but aren’t taught!’ good call emma AND so good to see you today because you’ve given me SO many good things to think about 🙂

    • Paula Howley

      January 15, 2015 at 12:28 am

      yes- make this a blog post and a challenge so we do it.
      Paula Howley recently posted…Head Start Public Speaking For Kids Week 11- Speech PAR-TAY!!!!

      • chelsea

        January 15, 2015 at 6:23 pm

        good idea! i’ll have to roll some ideas around

  3. Danielle (@TheLifestylePrj)

    January 14, 2015 at 1:03 pm

    Ugh car issues! Nothing makes me feel less capable than going to the mechanics. I had to psych myself up just to get my winter tires put on so I completely feel your pain in trying to handle this situation alone. Glad you were able to come up with such a solid plan (and chocolate is a must, duh) and take care of the issue yourself. Such a rewarding feeling!
    Danielle (@TheLifestylePrj) recently posted…4 Things That Will Help You Get Shit Done in Coffee Shops

    • chelsea

      January 14, 2015 at 3:00 pm

      what is it about big hunks of metal that can make us feel this way, danielle!? oh man, i remember when i lived in colorado feeling anxiety about having to get winter tires put on too…even though all i had to do is drive there! ha.

  4. Vivien

    January 14, 2015 at 1:22 pm

    1) About a week ago when I was leaving for work only to find my car would not start. I was running tight on time so I had to borrow my parents’ car. When I got home that night the diagnosis was my battery was just running low on charge. Plug in the battery charger overnight, done!

    I feel very fortunate that my dad knows quite a bit about cars, and at the same time I feel sad that I will likely never reach his level of knowledge, as much as he tries to teach me and I try to learn. He’s taught me a few times how to change a tire, though to be honest if that ever happens to me (knock on wood) I may still need some help as my upper body strength is pitiful. Plus I’m sure I may have forgotten a few things.

    Last fall we changed the engine oil in all of our cars, and all I could think about while I watched him was “I could never do this on my own. I’d end up with oil all over myself before I could slide the collecting tray under there.”
    Vivien recently posted…Trusting in the Relatable

    • chelsea

      January 14, 2015 at 3:22 pm

      my dad has done the same vivien and i too try hard to remember it all but i will leave the oil changing to the professionals! where did our dads learn all this knowledge?!

  5. Monika

    January 14, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    Lifetime movies are the shit. Guilty pleasure for sure! Ha last time I wished my boyfriend was there to help me: he was out of town, we had a crazy storm, and when I got home from work there was no power… and it did not come back until 24 hours later. So I basically had to be alone in the dark (this is where the Lifetime movie induced paranoia kicks in) for the night and it was awful. The end. And I always worry about getting a flat and not having him here to come help me hahaha but I like your frame of mind wayyyyyyy better 😉

  6. chelsea

    January 14, 2015 at 4:10 pm

    ahhhh that sounds TERRIBLE monika!!!! i would have zero idea what to do if there was no power for 24 hours…i guess light some candles and hold a knife (back to the paranoia). glad i’m not alone in this 🙂

  7. Rachel G

    January 14, 2015 at 7:35 pm

    In theory I know exactly how to change a tire (the steps are really easy on paper)–but I’ve never actually had to do it. My little sister, on the other hand (she’s 21) had a tire blow out on the way home from work last week, got out, jacked the car up, and got all set to change it herself, before finding that all 110 pounds of her couldn’t budge the bolts. So, she resolved not to be independent and called my little brother (19 years old), who she lives with, to come help her out–he could get the bolts off, but even though he’s huge and very strong, he couldn’t get the wheel off! (Something to do with a 15 year old car that’s rusted through many a Michigan winter, and the fact that it was below freezing, of course). So then they called in the pros (a last resource for broke college students, obviously) but the tire got changed. I’m proud of her, even if she didn’t actually fix it all by herself, because she knew what to do and who could help her.
    To me, being independent doesn’t mean having all the same knowledge and skills–Angel and I have very different skills and areas of expertise–obviously we could and did survive just fine on our own but we benefit immensely by appreciating the other’s skill sets (and no, muscles will never be one of my best assets. I’m built like a child.)
    Rachel G recently posted…A Belated Christmas Gift

    • chelsea

      January 14, 2015 at 8:45 pm

      super valid and important point you make rachel with being independent doesn’t mean having all the same skills and knowledge! completely agree. i more-so felt that i get so comfortable with just pawning things off on my husband that sometimes i’m capable of doing them too!

      ohhh those dang bolts! i watched the guys in malaysia also struggle to get a few off so you totally need strength for that! excellent to be proud of her for finding the right people who knew how to help her-smart lady 🙂
      chelsea recently posted…How A Little Screw Tried to Screw Me Up

  8. Audrey

    January 15, 2015 at 5:40 am

    Ughhhh. When I was 19 I blew a tire on the highway at 4am. I called my dad and boyfriend (now husband) to come fix it.

    At 20 I was less confident and, if I’m being honest, scared to death to be alone on the side of the highway at 4am. (Thanks a lot, Law and Order.)

    Now, at 24, I’m determined to learn how to change a tire, change my oil, and perform other semi-easy car related tasks. I’m actually a little ashamed that I can’t do these things yet 🙂

    • chelsea

      January 15, 2015 at 6:25 pm

      ahhh law and order is TOTALLY to blame too! “da-da-DUM” that sounds so crazy about a tire blowing out at 4am on a highway! eek! love tat you are determined to do these things now, audrey! me too! gooooo team!

  9. Courtney! @ Redefining Athlete

    January 15, 2015 at 8:41 am

    I’m exceedingly proud of my ability to fill up the washer fluid. I read the manual myself!
    I’m really guilty of depending on my husband (or paying someone) to take care of things like this. I have NO idea what I would have done in your case. Probably would just have left my car in the parking lot and never went back 😛 haha or sat in my car and youtubed videos on changing a tire. I need to try practicing changing my tire sometime soon.
    Courtney! @ Redefining Athlete recently posted…Disney Bound! & A Runner’s Guide to Kansas City!

    • chelsea

      January 15, 2015 at 6:26 pm

      you should be exceedingly proud, courtney! i think rachel above makes a good point that there is something to be said about us being proud that we know who to call to fix them but i still want to up my knowledge in this area so i feel more confident!

  10. Amanda Wood

    January 16, 2015 at 9:47 am

    Thank the lord I haven’t had an issues like this, but good for you! I don’t know if I could change a tire all by myself, but I could totally do what you did though!
    Amanda Wood recently posted…Blogger Love – January 16th

    • chelsea

      January 16, 2015 at 12:29 pm

      yeah i don’t think i could change a tire all by myself without consulting some YouTube videos first! i know that a jack is involved and you have to get the lug-nuts off the tire and not to pinch your fingers or something. ha!