About a week ago, i finally received a California Driving License, something that i ‘ve never imagined before. I was so happy, and i am still. I consider this as an achievement because it was a long and challenging journey. Not only because i had postponed the behind-the-wheel test for about a year (i got the permit on February 2010, and took the test on February 2011), but also because i had to struggle dealing with my own fears. I was so fearful so that i was so reluctant to touch the wheel.
But now…looking back to my journey, i am giggling and feeling proud of myself. I think my experience is worth sharing, hoping that it may also worth reading for others. In the next paragraphs, i would like to describe what i have done to finally able to transform myself from being so fearful to being joyful.
First thing first, i found one way to change my fearful thinking. What i did was that everytime i sat in the passenger seat, i looked around and paid attention to other drivers in other cars. While doing that, i saw that almost every one could drive. I found male and female, young and old, and from variety of ethnical background, surely were driving. Some of them even driving while talking or chatting, and listening to the music. I didn’t see any fearful expression in their faces, but calmness and joyfulness. Among them, old women and women with child inspire me a lot. I thought that if almost anybody can drive, i can do it too.
Secondly, I watched YouTube videos about driving both from DMV and random people. I use them to learn the rules of road and to handle the skills of driving. I watched the videos often, again and again. I also read few online and printed resources about how to conquer fear too (lol).
Thirdly, i used visualization. In my visualization, I imagined how happy and how improved my mobility and independency would be if i could drive. There would be less “asking for help” to my husband or to a friend to take me or drop me off somewhere. And by visualizing something nice i was able to build and to keep my motivation up.
Fourthly, i practiced often. All the theories and inspiring articles about driving won’t be useless without me applying them. By practicing it often, i got more understanding of what i have read and watched. First practice was horrible, and i was so scare but by times, it got better, and i became less tense.
Last but not least, i also believe that i wouldn’t have done it without the love and support of someone close (especially my husband), and surely the protection and of GOD too. As a human being, we sometimes feel tired, lazy, and frustrated. In times like that, we need someone outside ourselves who can listen, support, and energize us again. We also need God to protect us while we are on the road. I find myself calm and felt protected every time i recite a prayer before driving.
That’s all i can remember about my journey to get a driving license. I hope people out there, who still have fears of driving, but want so much to drive can benefit from my experience. I believe that the fears of driving can be conquered. It takes times, determination, and patience too. Just try, try, and try again, you can do it!