License to Drive

Monday, I started this post after my eldest son successfully passed his driver’s exam but finished it a day later, and what a difference a day makes.  After he finished his road test, his first words were “I feel giddy, mom.”  You could see the new-found freedom on his face…He was already planning his cross-country trip to Comicon in LA this summer to which I replied…”Over my dead body…just because you can drive by yourself in a car legally doesn’t mean you’re going to drive BY YOURSELF IN A CAR ACROSS THE COUNTRY!”  I felt compelled to drill into him the rules that he will abide by, that amazingly enough I’ve been repeating like a mantra since he was thirteen and was devastated because he believed literally that when you became a teenager then you could drive… I found myself repeating those same axioms most parents repeat when they realize the very same person who can’t remember to eat the sandwich he made for himself because he got distracted by something shiny, is on the road directing motor and metal at speeds up to…well I don’t even want to think about that.  I was glad he faced this rite of passage successfully, yet had that sick feeling in my stomach when I called our insurance agent to add him to our insurance.  Before the agent could even get back to me on how much our rates would go up…he had an “incident” which I won’t elaborate on, because it isn’t fair to him…and yes there is a huge but….BUT the universe was giving him a big in your face about not listening well enough to your mother’s wisdom.  So the parking permit he got for the highschool will sit safely in my purse, and he will exist in indentured servitude this summer paying off his deductible.  I watched his face collapse as I told him that half of any paycheck he got from working would go to his college fund, and another fourth would pay us back…this is after the government takes a third for their share.  Life is tough sometimes.  Truthfully? while I’m glad the incident was relatively minor, and he is learning a major life lesson, I do wish he could have had more that 24 hours to celebrate that sense of independence a driver’s license brings.

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