When it comes to dreams and making them happen, there are times you can find yourself discouraged. There will be times that self-doubt and negativity will come in to try and detour you away from making things happen that you are working hard to achieve.

At the beginning of the year I sat down and I created a list of things that I hoped to achieve this year and my biggest goal on the list was the first one I achieved and here is that story.

Like any 15-almost-16-year-old, I began my car shopping before I turned 16. I wasn’t sure if I was going to get a car but I always hoped for a truck or SUV. When my mother and I began looking we looked at a few Jeep Wranglers, unfortunately, I didn’t (and still don’t) know how to drive a manual.

I ended up with a 1990 Chevy Lumina as my first car. It wasn’t great, it wasn’t a truck/suv, BUT…it did get me around to where I needed to be.

After a few cars and two college degrees, I decided I wanted to upgrade to a nicer new vehicle and began to explore some options. The Jeep Wranglers still seemed to be out of reach for me price-wise and I never really gave it much thought and just had it in my head that it was just something that I wasn’t ever meant to have.

Fast forward to November 2015, I was driving a Ford Escape at this point that I LOVED but it wasn’t a Jeep. I went to talk to a dealership about trading in my Escape for a Wrangler. The numbers came back with a high monthly payment and I was told that if I were to trade in my Escape for a Cherokee and came back after a year that I would be in a better position to upgrade to a Wrangler. I told them I would do whatever it took and to set up a game plan for me to follow to make it happen.

I had been saving cash tips from my bartending gig for a couple years at this point but was bound-and-determined to follow the plan they gave me and to come back with a down payment twice as much as I brought in after a year.

A year goes by and I show up at the dealership, ready to go. Unfortunately, they told me that the numbers were worse before and they weren’t able to follow through with their promise. They even kind of laughed when I said by the end of 2018 I was making it my goal to be in a Wrangler. They kinda smirked/laughed and said “ok” as if they didn’t believe that I could make it happen. I never went back.

Although, I was heartbroken I was not willing to give up. So I kept checking in about every 6 months with any Jeep dealership I could find in Nashville.

Three more years of trying to find a dealership that could make my dream happen and three years of saving more cash tips gets us to today. I received a post card in the mail from a dealership that was offering a trade-in bonus on a new vehicle. I didn’t think I could get in to a new Jeep and started looking at their used inventory to find that they had a few used ones that I liked and called to make an appointment to see what could be done.

Unfortunately, I was denied for financing on a used vehicle. However, the dealership wasn’t willing to give up on me just yet. After about three hours of running numbers I was given the news I have waited years to hear – I was able to get a brand new Jeep Wrangler Unlimited with all the features I wanted and more within a price range I could afford. I nearly cried in the dealership.

The moral of this semi-long-story-short version of all the heartbreak, hard-work and literal blood, sweat, and tears involved to make my dream a reality: Hard work really can pay off. Dreams REALLY can come true. Whether the dream you are chasing is Large and seems out of reach or is tiny and may be insignificant to others but mean everything to you…GO FOR IT. Put in the work. You will cry. You will feel defeated. You will get discouraged. You will have negativity. You will have people who will try to talk you out of it and they may not always support you in ways that you need them to. But this is your dream, not theirs. Go do something for yourself that you’ve always wanted to do. If you put in the work the rewards will come.

Thank you to Freeland Auto for not giving up on me and providing such great customer service. You have made me a very happy girl by helping me make this dream come true.