Sunday, November 20, 2005
I've finally gotten past my fear enough to blog on this subject.
Sparkle got her drivers' permit back in June. Here in my state, the kids have to go for a certain amount of classroom instruction and then there's about 5 days of actual driving with a Driver's Ed. instructor. Oh wait, that's 5 days of 4 hours of instructions....so, half-days. Oh wait, you have to share that with another student. So you actually get like 8 to 10 hours of actual driving time instruction.
It isn't enough.
When Sparkle got her permit, I let her drive away from the DMV. The first thing she did was hit the gas and lay down black marks on the pavement as we were driving away....inadvertently, of course. I thought I would have a heart attack right then and there and I said some of the most awful cuss words you can say. I can't believe all the cops at the DMV didn't jump into their cars and take off after us. We were off to a wonderful start.
Since then I have laid my life on the line quite a few times while my daughter learns to drive. Here's a list of what I can remember:
1. Attempting to leave the car without putting the car in "park".
2. Heading straight for the ditch when backing out of the driveway.
3. Heading straight for the mailbox when backing out of the driveway.
4. Parking within 3 inches of another car.
5. Making a right turn on red without first stopping to make sure there is no oncoming traffic....TWICE!
6. Rolling over the curb at Target.
7. Veering over into the other lane (and in front of another car...by inches) during a double left-hand turn.
When you see that a mistake is being made....and you're rolling down the road at 50 miles an hour....you tend to get a bit LOUD when correcting your child. You just can't help it, its a reflex. Then the child looks at you like YOU are the one with the problem! "Mom, its only an 18-wheeler transfer truck. It will just have to stop for me!!! You're OVER-REACTING!"
Okay, to give Sparkle her due, she is doing a whole lot better. We now have it straight about stop lights. When you see red....you stop. Period. There's no exceptions to that rule. Once you're stopped, THEN you can assess whether this is a situation where you could possibly make a turn without killing yourself and everyone else.
She's gotten used to the gas pedal, so she's not laying down black marks all over creation. She takes her time backing out of the driveway now. She's taking her time with parking. And before she exits the car, she is stopping for a moment to think things over instead of just jumping out.
I might live after all. There might be some heart damage, but I'm alive.
Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org @ 12:26 PM