My husband and I were leaving Costco last week going to the liquor store next door when I saw a women using a white cane for the visually impaired. I was very concerned especially when she headed towards the parked cars in the handicapped zone. I stopped my husband immediately without pointing – like she would see me – but I was very discreet – and asked my husband how on earth she was going to drive. He predictably told me to stop staring!! Really?! How on earth would she know that anyone was staring??? My immediate concern was that we were going to be in traffic possibly with her in the near future. As my husband steered me into the liquor store, my liquor store guy, who had the perfect view of this woman assured me he would keep an eye on her. As we finalized our purchase, my guy told me that she was not driving; she was the passenger thank god. You have to keep an eye on people who drive – everyone wants to be treated equally in our society today, it’s just a matter of time before the seeing impaired will be out there driving with voice command gadgets. Lord knows how I ever got a license!! Actually I came up with an awesome idea! I want to get a white cane and dark glasses, go to my car with my husband, get into the driver’s seat and drive off, braking erratically with my husband playing along as if he is giving verbal instructions. What fun could that be??!!
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A few years ago, I realized down town Denver owned bragging rights for the most friendly citizen drivers in the Mile High City. My daughter talked me into driving myself, alone, back from the city to my suburban home 30 minutes away. This is extremely terrifying to me and I haven’t done it since. Simply she drove me to the city to her employer and I had to drive home. She’s just a very independent young woman who does not pamper me when I feel she should at my time of extreme fear. But I thought if she had confidence in me, then I would show her I could do this. She gave me a few simple instructions and off I slowly went. The first turn was fine, but the second turn, well….not so fine. But that was when I realized how friendly people – strangers – were in Denver! They all started waving at me! I thought “How friendly!” Yeah – I was driving the wrong way on a one way road! You can’t go too far without getting out of that predicament; luckily it was a little side street. Once I corrected that mistake, I just watched the cars in front of me for conformation, following the troops into battle as I started approaching the gigantic interstate fiddling with the radio, getting the volume of my Styx CD ready to go full blast. Holly crap! I don’t trust drivers to do the right thing on the roads at all. I’m supposed to trust strangers and then on that day, I’m supposed to trust thousands of strangers in huge vehicles all around me? I’m probably just as bad of a driver as most, I can’t stand going slow, and I feel comfortable going 70 mph or more. I did get home safely. I couldn’t feel my exterior limbs for a while, I just sat on the couch and stared I don’t know how long, no elation of this huge accomplishment – terror does not allow for that.
I do not like the phrase “It’s a learning experience”. I fail to comprehend such nonsense. I am however glad that there is wireless cell phone connections in cars now, so while I’m driving and am experiencing high anxiety, I can express my thoughts verbally like “Holly shit!, what the fuck?, Hell no, get the fuck out of my lane, If I had a gun, you wouldn’t be alive!, Think the shoulder is big enough for your sorry ass car??, Really? You think you can pass? Just watch how fast I can keep up with the car next to me! Fuck you!!! “ With the wireless connection, drivers will only think I’m talking into a blue tooth cell phone.
Since I have taken .25 mgs. of Xanax going to chat sessions in Boulder, I haven’t been experiencing the urge to express my intrusive thoughts lately. I actually enjoy watching sport cars narrowly miss cruising into the shoulder of the highway as they cut people off just to get caught up to all the slow drivers a few exits a head. It’s just me, my Xanax and what ever CD is handy on the road for now. That makes Chat sessions very uneventful. Perhaps I should discuss this with the Enemy. I of course would not discuss the verbal intrusive thoughts, but if he prefers me to attend chat sessions on Xanax or without this mild sedative cruising through my imaginative mind we could approach the subject.. He’s so non-committal when I ask about medications. Aren’t they all?