I’m goin’ home
And when I wanna go home
I’m goin’ mobile
Well, I’m gonna find a home
ON WHEELS, see how it feels
Keep me movin’
I can pull up by the curb
I can make it on the road
I can stop in any street
Invitin’ people that we meet
Keep me movin’
~ The WHO
Due to circumstances I’ve not much control over I voluntarily have grounded myself from my wheels. Driving has always been a passion of mine – here I am talking in past tense - the freedom to just get up and go is one now I realize I so took for granted.
I don’t have the exact day I stopped driving. Again. Because I have done it two times before this time. I stopped before neck surgery and after the cervical fusion of C4, C5, & C6. I had little range of motion that is a requirement for driving on the streets of the USA. Maybe it is different else where but the thought of people driving without being able to turn their heads left and right is a disturbing one. I knew straight away how dangerous it had become to drive when on the streets of downtown Seattle in broad daylight I was trusting my faith in God and His angels to help navigate me – pilot – uphill from the crazy busy stop and go traffic of Pikes Market to the quieter pedestrian corners of what is affectionately known as Pill Hill, but in reality is First Hill. It took me only a few times too many to admit that becoming a Seattleite and parking my wheels in the garage was the wisest choice. Only to be brought out for trips to the burbs, and long distance to the kids.
But I was not happy doing it. Nope.
And for the third time now I have parked my wheels. I cannot give the exact day I did it this time. It has not been long after the second time. I thought then that the short time grounded was the last time. I now know there will never be a last time because of the mechanics of my neck and shoulders.
This time, this third time has seemed permanent. It’s not been a year, but it’s been more than 6 months. I miss the little things about driving that I took for granted. Being able to jump behind my wheels and make fast trek to my favorite paper arts stores, craft and art stores. I have a system and when I need replenishing I prefer the luxury of driving myself, alone, not feeling the need to hurry.
I have the most ardent and sweet chauffeur. He never is too busy, always ready when I need to be somewhere else. There are tender moments that would no doubt be missed if I was not in need of a ride during the middle of the day – and in the middle of a project. No matter what I think is urgent, no matter how far and during the traffic crunch I’m sure to need to be, my BFF is as always my gallant Knight in Shining Armour. He is who comes to my immediate rescue. How blessed am I?
Yet having to give up my wheels is still not something I am doing with grace. I wish I could say that I am. To be honest I am somewhat resentful. It’s not making a happy camper out of me having to be grounded from my own four wheels. Despite that it has been completely voluntarily so.
I miss things about driving that I only have dreams and wishes about, as well as the everyday things I took for granted. I have on my ever-growing bucket list two things regarding driving; Nascar Racing, and to travel across different countries, small rural areas being the focus in a luxury touring car. A Mercedes will do nicely, thank you. Speeding at 200mph around an oval track and slowly and with purpose trekking through mountain roads in places like Madrid.
I continue to dream these possibilities.
Being grounded from my wheels is only temporary for me. Who am I to be so ungrateful? This is not permanent and with work and skills I will get myself back behind the wheel knowing with all confidence that I can look left, look right, and even look over my shoulders. So why am I whining so? I detest being dependant on others for anything, and for me this is what having the privilege to driving is. Yet when illness or injury have a whopping effect on the ability to so safely it’s time to put away pride along with my keys.
I’d love to meet you, putting faces to names is one of the magical things about life and people. However; I trust you’ll give me a rain check this time. This time until the restriction for your safety is lifted.
Being grounded from wheels is a bummer – just a little bit of one.