Being disabled, I have learned there are many things in life that are blessings in disguise.
The other day while driving home from Baltimore with my mom, we passed by someone being pulled over by a cop with this look of dread on their face. I glanced over at my mom and like I’ve said for many years,”I’m glad I’ll never have to deal with that.”
When I first heard that I would never be able to drive, I was pretty disappointed to say the least. It was around the same time most of my friends were getting their licenses which made the news even harder to swallow.
I take great pride in being independent mostly because I used to be so reliant on others when I was younger. But when my independence is threatened, i feel trapped and stuck. That was exactly how I felt that day and still do sometimes when I think of it. It’s amazing how something as simple as driving can affect our lives.
Because of my disabilities, before I could go take my driving test, I had to be evaluated by the state or what is better known as DORS (the Department of Rehabilitation Services) Anyways, after hours of testing, they came to the conclusion that because of my poor vision and lack of coordination that I was not able to drive. They said there were ways to improve my coordination but most likely even if I retested, I would get the same results.
The ride home from the appointment my mom and I just sat in silence for awhile. She knew how much this freedom meant to me and being a little over dramatic at times, saw my future flashing before my eyes. I thought back to an episode of the 90s show “Sister Sister” where Tia was too afraid to drive and had a nightmare about her mom driving her for the rest of her life. (yes, I’m dating myself) But it wasn’t a nightmare for me, it was the truth! It sounds so pathetic but I honestly was devastated that day. I really hoped there was some type of device that would be able to help me.
As with many things though, I have just learned to accept it for what it is.
There are times when I’d like to just get out of the house or go run errands on my own but I can’t. Or when I want to visit family or friends but I’m not able to because I don’t have a ride.
But the good part about not driving is that it forces me to be more organized and plan ahead. It is kind of nice having someone to drive me everywhere too. And when people complain about gas prices or car insurance, well I can say that’s an expense I’ve never had to worry about. Or I love when people ask me for directions and expect me to know which highway to take. I recognize buildings and roads but I don’t drive so therefore I don’t really need to know the difference between Rt. 27 and 695. When my friends and I go out to a bar, I’m never the designated driver. Or getting into a fender bender with a rude person or being pulled over for a speeding ticket, I’ll never have to worry about either one.
The closest I came to driving a car was driving my scooter in college. Let’s just say that by the end of my senior year, that thing was pretty banged up from me running into walls and I was known for driving a little too fast. I think it is in my best interest that I’m not allowed to drive a car. For now, I’ll just have to settle with depending on my family and friends for rides and hope that someone one day invents Bumblebee.
I guess you can say “there’s more than meets the eye” about not driving. (sorry I couldn’t resist)