Do you ever have one of those days, those awful ones that you’d rather forget? That was my Monday. In this post, I’m breaking my promise to never again ask for a do-over.
The day started uneventfully: a lovely dog walk, breakfast, and a short drive to yoga. The gym is about a mile away, a route that I could drive with my eyes closed, but I wouldn’t. But this time, disaster struck. On a left turn, I hit an older pedestrian. He lost balance when he placed his hand on my car and fell on the pavement. Thankfully, I was driving very slowly and was able to stop immediately.
Before we go any further, I want to assure you that, although the fellow was likely bruised from the fall, he was not seriously hurt. He was able to walk, and was checked out by paramedics, but thankfully he was fine. That was all I cared about.
I am 100% responsible for what happened. A man was walking through an intersection on a walk sign and I did not yield to him. When car hits person, car is to blame, unless the individual is jaywalking.
I was very upset by this turn of events, as I’m sure you understand. I was unsure whether I had been reckless or inattentive, although I could clearly remember checking the intersection from all directions before proceeding slowly. I turned into blinding sun, which is not an excuse but a reality; I could not see the man crossing.
Emergency services arrived within minutes and police reviewed the incident with me. I was very upset and acknowledged fault. After completing my written statement, I asked the officer what witnesses had seen. Witnesses had confirmed my version of events, but the officer still issued me a very large ticket. As he handed it to me apologetically, he encouraged me to attend court to challenge the charge. Clearly he was implying he trusted I was driving with care.
Your first impulse may be to call my doctor and have my license is revoked; that was my first impulse too. That is, until witnesses confirmed my perception of events. This had nothing to do with my leukemia or my fatigue or undue care. You know from previous rants I was not on my phone. You are not unsafe with me on the road.
Over the past few days, I’ve forced myself to get behind the wheel. If I don’t, I’ll become afraid of driving. Sure, I want to avoid things that are scary for me, but avoidance will only make me more fearful over time. Get back on the horse, or behind the wheel, as the case may be. Sure, I’ve been driving more cautiously, especially when the sun obstructs my vision, but that makes sense, doesn’t it? You’d probably do the same.
This incident has also reminded me that sometimes drivers are inattentive or distracted or, like me that day, unable to see momentarily. There’s wisdom in the old adage: “Look both ways before you cross the street.” Yes, mom, you were right.