With my young, unknowing eyes gazing down a painted row of guiding lines, I nervously attempt to shift from one thought to the next, paying mind both to my hectic surroundings and to the bickering beside my head. The soothing rhythm of the engine is all that breaks the madness of the fast-paced world around me. A sure assumption can be made—I am driving and I’m quite new to it.
For someone born to an urban life, the zoom of a car is more common than the flight of a bird and the true significance of a vehicle is lost. This misperception, however, was killed the instant I sat behind the wheel and commanded a gas-powered metal machine myself. Its power feels tremendous, making it difficult to tame without experience. Every yard of motion feels like an inch and every mile is erased in moments.
[vision_pullquote style=”1″ align=”center”] As a high school student, I am someone who is quickly growing, and the ability to go anywhere puts in my hands a sense of availability and maturity. [/vision_pullquote]
Along with the almost overwhelming display of all that driving requires, however, is an entirely new set of opportunities for those entering adulthood. As a high school student, I am someone who is quickly growing, and the ability to go anywhere puts in my hands a sense of availability and maturity. Driving does not serve solely to entertain the idea of being older, however—it opens doors to independence and freedom. Young drivers can travel where they need to travel and do so unhindered by distance, a power not otherwise held by them.
Of all lessons given to me by my experience in driving, the most outstanding would be that of patience. Traffic is inevitable, and adjusting to the driving habits of others, whether they’re agreeable or not, is required. This hones decision making skills and promotes an adaptive but assertive middle ground for my exchanges with those around me.
Driving is the modern-day rite-of-passage; it is how aging has come to be measured, and with all that indicates my rise in experience, it is my engine of change.