In what is probably the most exciting, life changing news, I’ve had the pleasure to share since starting this blog… I am proud to announce that thanks to Young Drivers I am going to learn to drive. Wait, you say. Learn to drive? Yes, here is where I have to confess to you all that I am 36 years old and I don’t have a drivers license.
When I was 15 I couldn’t wait to learn to drive. Like most other kids in my highschool I was eagerly awaiting my 16th birthday, when I would run out and get my beginners permit. Then I pulled some stupid teenage sheenaignas that had my parents rightfully grounding me until further notice. Which meant I missed the sign up date for the next set of Young Drivers classes, it also meant my parents were no longer willing to pay for me to take drivers ed. I was welcome to get my license, provided I took training classes, and paid for them myself. I had missed the window of opportunity, so I decided I didn’t care. I was in no hurry to get my license, it was something I would get around to eventually.
Graduated licensing came into effect, which made me feel like what was the point…. get my license and I still wouldn’t be able to drive for two years? Wow. I wish I had gotten it back when I was 16. Ah well, whatever. I went to college, got a job, moved out, attended University, and started my own business selling vintage toys online. I occasionally flirted with the idea of getting my license, but I was 25 now, I was 30 now, I had made it this long without one. Money was tight, and the cost even just to apply for a beginners permit had really gone up. Man, I wish I had gotten my license when I was 16. But it’s not that big of a deal, my husband drives, my parents drive, his parents drive. There’s public transit. When I need to get somewhere I make arrangements.
I moved from a tiny apartment into our house, got married, finished University, had two kids. All this time has slipped by, I am in my 30s, I have spent thirty-some years as a passenger in a car. The idea of getting behind the wheel is now a bit terrifying. On the other hand, I’m a mom now and I have this nagging guilty feeling, I know I should probably get my license so I can drive my girls around to classes, parties, all those events that come up. So getting my license is constantly on my mind, but I keep putting it off. When my husband is working strange hours because his shift at work got swapped again my mom swings by and brings the girls and I for groceries, when I need to take the kids to the doctors my mother-in-law gives us a ride, when I need to get out to a particular store to pick up a gift for my husband my Dad brings me. We make do, and to be honest, I enjoy the company.
Then disaster strikes. My dad has a mild stroke, his vision and short term memory are affected, and he loses the ability to drive. Then a few months later my mother-in-law also has a mild stroke. Her experiences are pretty much identical to my father’s, and she also has her license revoked. My father-in-law is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s and had his license revoked the year previous. In a very short period of time I switch from having a family support network that I can rely on to being the one that is needed for help. Now my Dad is the one that can’t make it to his doctor’s appointment without help. Now my mother-in-law is the one who needs a ride to go pick up groceries. My husband does drive, but he also works long hours, and his shifts constantly change. I really feel like I need to step up and help out by getting my license. I am still nervous, down right scared when I really think about it, but it is time to put on my big girl panties, act like a grown-up, and learn to drive.
However, I can’t do it on my own. I need help. And that’s where Young Drivers comes in.Yeah that’s right Young Drivers isn’t just for teenagers (though yes, I do wish I had taken the course back when I was 16!).
Young Drivers of Canada is Canada’s largest driver training organization. Established in 1970, YD has grown to over 140 classrooms nationally and has taught over one million novice drivers. YD is committed to teaching the skills needed to keep drivers safe on the road through its proprietary Collisionfree! ™ Approach.
I am super excited to have Young Drivers on board. They are providing me with classes, which is just the impetus I need to get out there and actually Do This.
I could also use a little help and encouragement from you guys. How old were you when you first got your drivers license? Any tips for getting over the jitters?
I hope you will join with me as with Young Drivers help I set out on my big adventure and learn to drive. Over the next few weeks and months I will be posting about each stage on my journey. Next up – applying for my beginners permit.