Today I decided to share the one thing, that I have been more ashamed of than anything else in my adult life. Not because I think it would make it easier, in fact its kinda like, willingly dropping my towel in front of a hundred people. I want to share with you because I hope that in my sharing I can help someone else feel a little less ashamed. A little less like their worth is determined by something materialistic.
I don’t have my driver’s license. I’m 8 days from 30 years old, and today was the first time I did my drivers license test.
I’d like to say that I don’t have it because – when I was 18 my parents were getting divorced, and no one had time to teach me to drive. There were more important things going on. Or that when I was 19, I was too busy being pregnant. At 20, I was too busy having a baby… and so I would continue till I got to here. As valid as all those “excuses” are – I do accept that, that is exactly what they are. It’s not that I didn’t want to get it. I did – many times I’ve imagined what my life would be like if I had it. How easy and independent I would feel and be. But it’s never been enough to drive me (you see how I used that there? He he he), to a point where I actually went for it.
I am so ashamed of it though, when people talk about driving or me driving. I change the subject, avoid the question or just make a quick exit – alternatively I’ve lied or just don’t give a reason why I don’t have it yet. I’ve realized most people will just assume that you have been in a terrifying car accident that scared you emotionally and now you just haven’t found the guts to drive. In my books, THAT would be justified. Or so I felt.
“People” don’t help much though – having someone tell you, “Oh you don’t have your license? Shame man…you should get it – you will feel so much more independent.” or just being in a situation where you are stuck because you don’t have your license… somehow people feel the need to tell you – “It would be better/easier/different if you had your license”.
AS IF I DIDN’T ALREADY KNOW THAT. (vomit)
As if already I didn’t value myself less than the next person because of it, or lack of it.
As you have probably guessed by now. I failed.
Sigh! All this hype – and let me just tell you I was so ready, I started my driving lessons at the crack of dawn and my instructor was 200% confident I would get it.
I was PERFECT.
Some things just aren’t meant to be I guess. I didn’t even make it out of the yard. Gasp! I rolled the car – something in the 20 driving lessons prior to that moment I must have done twice in total – what are the chances of that? Yeah, these things happen to me. Once the examiner had told me I failed he might as well have poured ice water all over me. I laughed my uncomfortable laugh and signed to say that I received my result.
While the tears stung in my eyes, burning to show all the emotion that overwhelmed me. I was at PE’s traffic department, which if you are not familiar is the crappiest place on the planet to have a melt down. I had to pull my big girl panties up and book for another test, so I swallowed the huge lump in my throat and went through the process again. While sitting in the queue though, my restraint failed me and the tears spilled from my eyes. I tried to be gracious and just wipe them away as they rolled down my cheeks. I held the green application form slightly over my face and focused out of the window. Till the two hour wait was over and I could go home, to pull the covers over my head and hide from the world.
I wanted this so much, I wanted to be able to validate myself. To be able to have people be proud of me. To be on the same level as my peers.
It broke my heart.
The day is over and I keep looking back and trying to think or imagine what I was supposed to learn from this. I sobbed whilst telling Emilie about it. She was so excited at the prospect. I told myself that she would learn that you need to pick yourself up after life knocks you down. Right? That is the lesson? Right? Let me think about that some more – because right now I don’t even think I want my license. Tomorrow will be better.
In the meantime – I hope this Monday sucked a little less for you!