“Brake, brake, Brake, BRake-BRAke-BRAKe-BRAKE-BRAKE!!!” I said, then moved on to implored, begged, screamed, demanded, and flat out yelled, and all in less than three seconds. My youngest who now has her drivers permit wasn’t stopping my truck with the same sense of urgency that I felt the scenario called for.
My right calf muscle was screaming from pushing against the invisible brake pedal on the passenger side of my truck.
“I am!” she countered defensively.
“Well not fast enough – You do exactly what I say, remember?” I countered in emotion.
Talk about faith… Sheesh. Putting my life, and even more importantly, my daughter’s life, in my belief that she’s ready and capable of navigating my big truck that to say “is hard to judge” is a ridiculous understatement, shows real faith in action and trust along with my answer to prayers.
It’s a stressful situation to say the least and I’m probably guilty of making it harder. I used to be better… I know that’s the typical declaration of someone who’s been stirring up dust on planet earth for more then four or five decades, but it’s usually true.
It’s been ten years since I taught Kenz to drive and seven since I taught Ali. When I say I was better back then, it’s true, but it’s the why I was better that draws my mind to calculate and consider the change. Sure, I was obviously younger, but I’m not sure it’s a matter of just the sunrises and sunsets that make all the difference, it’s more the attitude and perspective at the time.
One early winter evening, before Kenz was old enough for her permit, (folks that hail from the south believe to be a good driver you gotta start way younger than the law allows) after cruising the desolate streets of a new custom subdivision south of our house, I had Kenz turn the opposite way of our routine route home.
This route took us out to the main city street where I surprised her with a, “Turn right!” with a grin.
“I can’t!” she answered.
“Yes you can, you just listen to me – you’ll be fine,” I assured her.
We cut the night in my old truck, me smiling almost as much as her after she realized she was well qualified. *News Flash* Time has a way of changing folks and I’m no exception to the stubborn rule. Ten years ago I was old enough to be wise with the lives entrusted to me, but I was also ten years closer to the fearless and reckless kid of my youth.
If I can recognize the simple changes and attitude from when I taught my girls to drive, how do other changes affect my world view now? More than I realize I suspect. When we speak of days gone by and the changes of the current generation compared with ours, we might have a slightly skewed point of view.
Not to suggest that things haven’t changed and certainly not all for the best, but I think many of us tend to measure our lives and past actions by our standard and perspective of our life as it is now. Just something to contemplate when we lift the index finger to point and judge by standards we may not have been practicing when we were learning to crawl, ride a bike, drive a car, or anything between then and now.
Doesn’t seem that long ago I watched the newest driver in the family take her first steps…