Saturday, April 3, 2010

On the Road - Driven to Distraction

Even though the Full Moon is not due for a few weeks, I have seen a large number of distracted drivers recently. I've passed a lot of accident scenes, and been part of a lot of near-misses. It's enough to make a normal driver become very nervous about being out on those roads.

I've been driving for only 30 years. I never had to learn to drive a car until I was 40 and moved from the East Coast to southern CA on the West Coast, in 1979.
My younger sister (by 11 months) gave me my first few lessons in her big ol' Ford Galaxie. Then we decided I should finish up with a professional teacher rather than risk one of us ending up hating the other.

I tend to be a very practical person, and even from the start, I never saw any wisdom in my getting riled up over something another driver did. It didn't make sense to me for both of us (me and the other driver) to be angry and out of control at the same time. So I adopted a very peaceful and defensive driving attitude.

That doesn't mean that I do not get upset if a driver cuts me off, or we have a near-miss, or any one of dozens of things that can cause a driver to become agitated. And it doesn't mean that I do not make mistakes myself.

It just means that I immediately learned to say a quick prayer that I would be blessed with enough patience to keep my wits about me. Most times I can do that, but the prayer is important. I need that connection to God at those moments. I am, after all, still very human, and prone to agitation under stress, just like anyone else. God is my only answer. I'm sure there are many people who would not agree, but that is them and I am me. It works for me.

Father, please continue to bless me with your grace, and your protection from my own driving mistakes and from the mistakes of others; please help me to remain at peace so I can focus on being safe.

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