Keys to Freedom



She knew better, but she did it anyway.



“Hello. How much do you charge to change the ignition in a car? Yes, I would like it re-keyed. A 2004 Honda Accord.”

“Thank you very much. I will call back if I decide to have it done.”


Megan entered the house through the kitchen door. She had hoped that her mother would already have gone to bed, but no such luck.

“Where have you been?” That familiar hands-on-hips stance greeted her from the other side of the granite island countertop.

“Why do you care, Mom? My gosh, I am 16, you know.” There was no reason to be quiet now. Megan jerked open the refrigerator door causing the salad dressing bottles to rattle against one another.

“Don’t be smart with me, young lady. Now, where were you?”

Just one more emotional outburst. So predictable, and demanding and condescending.

“At the youth meeting with Cady and Trish.” Megan rolled her eyes as she twisted the top off of the Dr Pepper. She gulped a drink in an effort to avoid looking into her mother’s harsh gaze.

“Your dad and I have told you that you cannot be out with Cady. When he was arrested last week, that was the final straw. Leopards don’t change their spots.” Slapping at the countertop for emphasis, her mother succeeded in sending a bowl of snack mix to the floor. The bowl shattered and Megan smirked as she simply moved one step to the left to avoid the broken glass.

“Yeah, yeah, birds of a feather… But what I have learned in youth group is that we are all leopards of one kind or another. Jesus is perfectly capable of changing our spots.” Why can’t she see how much I love him? She is so closed.

“Give me your car keys. You’re grounded. Your father and I will discuss this and decide when you may have the car back.” Her mom’s outstretched fingers were just as rigid as her parenting style. There was no wiggle room at all. None.

“You always do this. You’re so old fashioned. No, you’re just old!” There, she’d said it.
It didn’t matter that her mom was only 17 years old when Megan was born. She would always be so old. Much too old to remember true love.

“Just give me your keys and go upstairs.”

Megan dropped the keys on the edge of the table, ignoring the outstretched hand waiting for them.

“Fine.” Megan’s heels clicked on the kitchen tiles as she stormed away. Knowing that she had another set of keys to the car, she couldn’t help smiling with her back to her mother.


Why is it so hard to explain to her that I am only looking out for her safety? I’m so glad she is involved in church now, but she has to be responsible…

Her mom’s shoulders dropped as she picked up the keys from the table. “Blue? I never had blue keys made for that car…”


“I called a little while ago. I would like to make arrangements to have a car’s ignition re-keyed. How soon will you be in the Briargate area? Thank you, I will be waiting.”