June 13, 2011

Driving just isn't the thrill it used to be - or maybe it's a thrill in a different way, rather

When my dad was dying of cancer, he was pretty drugged up. I remember looking at the bottles of opiates and pain killers of a variety of sorts piled on the kitchen table, and seeing him choke down handfuls of them to keep away the endless pain he suffered.  Then he'd get into his car and drive. It was terrifying but in reality, he still drove pretty well. I'm certain he was impaired, but he'd driven in the area for so many years that it was almost automatic.  The big risk was from unexpected events. I sat very quiet when he drove and tried not to be distracting...but he just didn't want to give it up.  For him it was freedom, life, a sign he still was who he had been.
 My MS is starting to affect my driving.  Part of it is the lack of familiarity of the roads around here, some of it is a leftover from an optic neuritis bout, some of it is my distractability, and I'll bet the GPS lady isn't really helping, either. I need to get a more global view of Halifax/Dartmouth rather than the tiny view in the GPS window. But it's a bit scary. And I hate the thought of losing an ability to drive.  Like my dad, it's part of my identity. I drive well, overall. I like being able to just take off if I want to. I like the idea of the convenience, the help for me and my difficulty walking, the sweetness of not having to carry piles of groceries from pillar to post.
But my life is getting limited. Tonight, for example, I was supposed to go out - but it is raining, and I know the roads will be covered with shine and glare when dark, and I can't handle all that visual input and drive at the same time.  It is totally overwhelming. And dangerous. So I'm staying in.
At least til I get my new glasses. And the ON calms down. Then we'll see. As it were.  Because I don't want to give it up.  Not yet.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Driving has not been a thrill for a long time. I understand perfectly your dilemma.

By the way, I commented as anonymous because blogger made a change that unless the blog being commented on makes the folowing changes, a commenter either cannot comment or only as anonymous.

Go your dashboard, hit settings >comments > comment form placement >pop-up window.
Hope that helps…

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