I pulled the truck out to the middle of the driveway. I put the carwash soap in the big orange bucket and added water. I watched the bubbles as they multiplied and loved that the water was warm from the sun. I grabbed the sponge. I even grabbed the step stool so I could reach the hood and roof. I sprayed the truck down and started cleaning.
This is when it became more than just washing a truck.
It was my husband’s truck. A gray 2006 F-150 he has named ‘Hefe’ and I have named ‘Daddy’s Truck’. It’s nothing flashy. It’s not lifted. It doesn’t have huge wheels on it. The front two windows aren’t even tinted. It looks like a normal F-150, but to me it holds so many memories – memories I have never even considered until I washed it. Alone. On a sunny day.
Chris bought this truck after he returned from his last deployment to Afghanistan. I put the first tear in the upholstery not long after it was purchased. He was thrilled. We moved most of our house in the bed of that thing. We have watched fireworks from the tail gate. We have gone on many dates. We brought our daughter home in that truck. In the snow and ice and it kept us safe. We dropped Chris off for this deployment in his truck. All of his gear took up the entire backseat. Most recently I ran over our friends son’s toy lawn mower as I was trying to back it into the driveway. Yes, I replaced it. When Chris comes home on leave and when he comes home for good we will pick him up in Hefe. We will start where we left off. In. That. Truck.
I never knew a vehicle with 4 wheels could mean so much. I never realized that I would be so affected by cleaning it. I didn’t realize that I would cry halfway through. I didn’t realize that I would smile at the same time. I had no idea I would feel so much pride. I had no idea a gray F-150 could represent so much of what Chris and I are.
I drove it for the rest of the day on Sunday. I didn’t want to let go of everything it helped me feel during its bath.