Nineteen and Not Driving.

It’s weird how time can change your perspective on something so much. When I was 14 and all my classmates were 15 getting their learner’s permit, I was itching to get a license. When I was younger, I saw driving as adventure, as freedom. But now, it’s responsibility. Not in the “oh, I have to run errands for my parents” way, but like the “oh, I severely injured someone and it’s all my fault” way.

I always thought I was going to get my license on my 16th birthday, but that didn’t happened. My parents thought it was in the best interest of my brother and I to wait to get our licenses until we were 18. I hated that. It was torture watching everyone else get their license and cars, while I just had to wait.

But while everyone was getting their licenses, getting ticket, and having really bad wrecks, I just sat back and watched. I saw how driving not only can greatly impact your life, but others around in a mere second. You know that at 16, but it sinks in more at 19.

I hate when people make the snap judgement of “well, what’s your excuse?” As if something is wrong for me not to be driving. First off, driving isn’t the end all, be all. But beyond that my family’s decision for me not to drive has been based on a plethora of reasons. Not that it should be anyone else’s concern but by the time I was 18, some serious things were going on in my family that caused it not to be the right time for me to go forward with that. By the time all of the dust settled, it was time to go to college. I didn’t have the time during the school year, between work and classes I was swamped enough as is. I didn’t need to drive either. I barely got a chance to breathe between the spring semester and the summer session so when I did, I didn’t actively seek driver’s ed. Once it summer sessions were over, it was back to fall classes.

I’m sure I could have found time and made it happen but at the time I valued going on family vacations and relaxing over going to learn how to drive. Going on those trips is a choice I’ll never regret. When you’ve gone this long without driving, waiting a little more time to learn how to drive isn’t as big of deal anymore. 

I driven some and I’m sure the days of me not driving are limited, but that’s my decision. I’ll drive when I’m ready to take on that responsibility. That doesn’t make me less than anyone else. In the end, we are all simply trying to make the best decisions that we need to for ourselves. Right now, not driving at 19 is what’s right for me.

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