Saturday, January 17

Driving Therapy

I have a family history of driving. If we went on vacation as a family, we drove. Sometimes, on weekends, we would all jump in the car and start driving around -- not really sure where we were going. We'd end up at a lake or in the mountains or at a lake in the mountains. One time Mom and I took a windy road up a mountain, only to become slightly stuck. I was super scared at the time, but we made it back down safe and sound and with a pocketful of hilarious memories. After my senior year the two of us went on a road trip to the west coast. We drove A LOT and it gave us a chance to talk and think and just be. My mom started to teach me to drive when I was about 13. I didn't just jump on the road; I began with backing the car out of the driveway and back in. Then, I progressed to driving on back roads on the way to and from Granny's house. I have been driving for longer than most people, which is what makes me a great driver (no tickets, no accidents -- minor parking lot incidents aside) and what makes me love to drive.Driving is therapeutic, especially at night. The quiet, dark landscape. A good song on the radio. Headlights beaming the way. Little traffic, little stopping. Just speed and constant movement -- that's the key. Whatever may be wrong -- something at work, something at home, something personal -- try going for a drive alone and in darkness. The rolling car allows for thoughts to become still. The mind stops pacing and becomes settled. It settles into, not necessarily "clarity," but peace.

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