This is correct. I never had much confidence in my ability to drive. It seemed very intimidating from the start. Imagine everyone around you obtain such a precious privilege. Meanwhile, I’m at the mercy of someone else’s time.
I used to pay people to drive me to work. Occasionally, I took the taxi. My husband is now the chauffeur. He claims that he is not bothered by running all of the errands, but I already burden Donnie with a lot.
Do I want to drive? Hell no. Do I need to drive for convenience? Yes.
I had finally gotten the nerve to learn a little more than a decade ago. Unfortunately, I was involved in a terrifying wreck with a tractor trailer. I wasn’t driving. The accident was the fault of the truck driver. I was scrolling through my phone when that accident happened. I looked up just as the the front of the truck slammed into the car. That was probably the scariest day of my life. I had two of my children with me. Thank God they were babies with short memories. Thank God that we walked away from that wreck with mild injuries. We were in an older car, and I think that is the reason why the car bounced off of that truck. That truck should’ve crushed us when it crossed the center line. After that day, I never needed a reason to doubt God’s existence.
One thing that didn’t recover from that accident was my mental health. I never sought therapy after the fact. Honestly, I don’t think therapy would’ve helped. I’ve been praying for years. As a matter of fact, I pray every time I get into a vehicle. I pray when the car is in drive and in park. I still freak the Hell out whenever there is a truck nearby. I am paranoid about everything on the road.
This was not me prior to the end of 2012. I was actually able to sit behind the driver’s seat and mash the accelerator. I wasn’t a good driver, but I tried. I never used to have so many panic attacks. I never used to be afraid of tractor trailers. I never used to be petrified of highway travel. I never used to be afraid of cars darting out at an intersection. I never used to be afraid to scroll on my phone while I was in a moving car. I never used to pray before, during, or after a car ride. I don’t really travel anymore unless I have to. This is why you might see me out the house maybe 5 times a year. By my logic, nothing will happen to me if I just stay home. When we go on family trips, I map the route to avoid any bridges or to familiarize myself with the highway. If we are staying overnight in a hotel, I refuse to travel more than 10 miles for leisure.
I just haven’t recovered mentally. Yes, I hate depending on others. I hate depending on others because I am being a burden. What turns me off is the pressure and the expectations. I always hear “You need to get a license.”, or “(insert name here) did it, so I know you can do it.”. These comments meant nothing to me before that accident. Now, they crush my spirit. It just feels like no one will take the time to hear me. I’M NOT READY. I may never be ready. Pressuring me only makes it worse. This is a conversation that I have had with Donnie. I didn’t know him at the time of that wreck, but he has been very accommodating. He’s never pressured me.
I don’t have the best vision. This is the perfect excuse that I use when people ask me why I don’t drive. The truth is, my vision is terrible. I have been wearing corrective eyewear since I was 4 years old, but lupus has had some impact on my vision. My eyesight is blurry at times. When I train my eyes on something for awhile, my eyes get tired and they rattle.
I don’t know if I will ever get behind the wheel again. I do know that I will never get behind the wheel with my kids in the vehicle. There is too much at stake. That accident changed my life. It ruined my life, and I don’t know how to recover from it. I have lived a life of fear because of it. In the meantime, I will continue to seek answers, I will keep praying, and I will continue to seek God.
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