Monday, July 28, 2008


I don't drive very often.

Partially, it's lack of need. There's no reason for me to drive, most of the time. Thomas and I tend to do all our chores as a family unit (in direct contrast to every bit of advice both parenting and dieting magazines say, I take both my child and my husband to the grocery store, and we do just fine, thankyouverymuch.) and he usually drives.

Second, it's lack of opportunity. We only own one car, and Thomas takes it to work with him, unless I need it for something specific. I can't remember the last time I had to drive him in to work, and then pick him up later.

Third, it's lack of desire. I was in a bad car accident six years ago; like really bad. I spent three months on the sofa and three months learning to walk again, bad. The worst part about it was that it wasn't my fault. I wasn't speeding, I was following all the traffic laws, and some lady with a patience problem came and stole 6 months of my life. And I didn't have any control over it; it's not like there was a lesson learned there for me. "gee, I ran my car into a tree, maybe I shouldn't go to a Who concert and try to drive four hours home so I can go to work in the morning..." The only thing I learned is that people are stupid, vicious and unremorseful. (Honestly, I'd feel better about the damn accident if she'd ever once said she was sorry. I'd have trouble living with myself if I'd hurt someone that badly. It always upsets me to discover that people can just suck. I keep hoping they'll stop, but they don't.)

So, I'm probably behind the wheel... eh, maybe once a month? Twice if I have a dentist appointment and a girl's night in the same month.

Now, because I'm behind the wheel as rarely as I am, I don't... ok, bear with me, this doesn't entirely make sense... but I don't pay attention to it. The car, the driving... I pay attention to traffic, to where I'm going and make all the right decisions. (Well, except for that thing with the stop sign a few weeks back, but I did apologize to the driver I cut off by accident, but that's beside the point.) But I don't pay attention to the driving... to the physical state of me driving. I know that sounds weird, but I used to love to drive, pre-accident. And I enjoyed the feel of being in the car, and the windows open and pumped up the music. Normal stuff. That most people take for granted.

But I'm not really normal anymore. And I don't enjoy driving, so really, I haven't paid a lot of attention to myself in the car.

I was driving the other day, just down to the drugstore to pick up my script because I needed it and I'd forgotten it until it was past Darcy's bedtime, and someone needed to stay here with her...

Anyway, I got in the car, adjusted the seat, buckled my seatbelt, and started to back out of the space.

And stopped.

I looked down. I hadn't adjusted the steering wheel.

I used to do that, all the time. I had to tip it up to the point where the rim of the wheel obfuscated my view of the speedometer. Because otherwise I couldn't steer the car; the wheel would dig into my stomach.

Thomas has much longer legs than I do, and he likes the steering wheel in the lowest possible tilt.

I was driving with the steering wheel at the same tilt. And there was about four extra inches between my stomach and the wheel.

How amazing.


Anonymous said...

*little hairs on arm stand up at attention*
thats a big ole NSV.

one of the best.


Anonymous said...

Admit it...

You wrote all of that just so you'd get to use the word "obfuscated" in a sentence, didn't you? ;)


Go you! And re: self-awareness in the car, I know exactly how you feel. I think it's a coping mechanism, personally; right after my accident, I had a hyper-awareness of how skinny the double yellow line is, and how close I passed to oncoming traffic. I had to shut it out, just shut down that piece of my awareness for awhile before I was comfortable driving again. (And I *still* don't like Jersey walls.)

Cammy@TippyToeDiet said...

You made me get all teary! Great NSV! Thanks for sharing it so that we could feel the happy too!

Lynn said...

Some lady sent me into the hospital, surgery and physical therapy, not to mention all the pain, without even a fleeting apology. I have always resented that, and I think I always will. She ran a red light at 55 mph.

That NSV is awesome!!! :)