You know how some people are deadly afraid of heights? Or spiders? Or flying? Or germs? (these are amongst the top ten most common fears by the way) Well, my biggest fear is driving.
I panic, I want to vomit and cry at the same time, I feel like I can’t focus enough, I get overwhelmed and scared and I just freak out to the point of wanting to take my hands and feet off of everything in the car and just stop.
I sort of know how to drive and I am sort of okay on a field but put me on the road and near another car and I turn into a ball of nerves.
Other cars scare me because of what they can do to me. I can be a perfect driver and follow all the rules but still get badly injured or killed because of someone else. This, combined with the fact that I am very slow to take action in bad/unforeseen or scary situations freaks me out. I don’t know what I will do if I see another car coming my way. I worry I will lose my cool and my control and not act quickly enough.
I have put this fear down to a few things
- Not having full control, yes I have control over myself and my car but I can’t control what everyone else does, especially not taxis.
- Having been in two accidents (of which none were my husband, the drivers fault) proves my theory about you driving in your own lane following the rules and getting taken out by someone else.
- I feel overwhelmed, like there is too much to do at the same time. Focus on the road and other cars, keep the car moving and changing gears all seems like a helluva lot to do while trying to keep yourself safe and alive.
So now that you understand my intense and very real fear you can understand what a big deal it is THAT I PASSED MY FRIKKEN LEARNERS THIS WEEKEND!
For me to actually take the step to book it was already a big deal because I know what comes after the learners and my mouth goes dry just thinking about it. I never wanted my leaners because I knew the pressure would then be on me to start driving which I have avoided for 10 years. But I did it, because I think (hope) I am ready to conquer this fear.
The piece of paper is cool but it goes way beyond that for me.
Why am I telling you all of this? Because I want to encourage you. Fear is a very real and misunderstood emotion. Almost everyone who I have told about my fear of driving can’t understand because “it’s so easy once you get it” but it’s not about being easy, it’s about getting over the fear. I don’t know if it will ever be easy for me (I sure hope it will).
So I want to say to you that your fear is valid but it is worth trying to work through it because not only will it change your life in whatever way, the feeling of pride and achievement is so amazing.
Take baby steps, do whatever it is you feel you need to get closer to conquering your fears.
These are a few things that I did to get my mind to a place where I could actually get the ball rolling;
- I thought about the positive side of doing this which is mostly independence
- I just knew how good it will feel when I passed my learners so I focused on that feeling and now that I’ve passed the learners I know that the feeling is going to even better when I pass my drivers so I am going to focus on that now
- I want to grow as a person and in my life so this was one big way I knew I could do just that
- I wrote down a list of pros and cons (obviously the only real con was my fear)
I will take you with me on my driving journey and hopefully it will inspire you to get out of your comfort zone and go after something you’ve been too scared to go after, or do something that you can feel as proud of as I do about going through this whole process.