Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Twists and Turns with Teenage Driving
My daughter received her driving permit about a month ago. I haven't been the same since. She insists on driving everyday and I, of course, allow her to take the wheel and get some good road experience under her belt before her actual 16th birthday in December. As I sit in the passenger seat, my feet cannot help but hit the "invisible" brake on the floor by my feet, but no matter how many times I push this invisible brake, it doesn't slow her down. And no matter how many times I turn the invisible wheel on the passenger side of the car, the car does not go the way I am turning it. My stomach is twisting and turning with each acceleration, stop, twist and turn of the wheel. I try to look like I am calm, but I am not. I try to keep my voice from rising to a yell, but it is nearly impossible when she crosses the yellow line and stops in the middle of the road. Eventually we make it back to our side of the road and I help her make a left hand turn into our neighborhood. She parks the car nicely in the driveway and pulls on the parking brake. My stomach settles as I dig my foot out of the carpet on the passenger side of the car and she hands me the keys. That is when I allow myself to breathe again. My older friends tell me it is just the beginning of raising a teenager and to just hold on, hold my breath and take a breather when necessary.