A spikey-haired boy walked into the DMV. He was exhausted. He had been reading driving booklets for a week. He was tired of reading about lane changes and double yellow lines. He cringed at the sight of the long lines of people ahead of him. But, he was excited. He looked into the future and saw himself picking up girls in his father’s Toyota.
“Hey, where you going? Need a ride? Yeah, this is a brand new car….and a brand new licence….and yeah my hair is cool. ”
It was gonna rock. He would be able to drive to school. Get a job and drive to work. He had it all planned out. No more asking Mom for a ride.
“HEY…..wake up. Fill this out. And write it nicely, not like chicken scratch like you usually do.”
The 16 year old nodded. “Ok…mom.”
He dropped back into reality. He sat down in a blue plastic chair and checked his surroundings. He was in a mass of angry faces. It was obvious that no one wanted to be here. Two hours later, he heard his number called. He jumped up. He walked up to the counter and smiled at the DMV rep.
“Thanks…I look forward to passing this test…and then driving…just like you guys.”
The rep just stared at him with no response. He walked away wondering why he said all that nonsense. He took the test at his seat. Fifteen minutes later, he heard his name called out by a driving tester. He took a deep breath and walked outside with the tester.
30 minutes later, the same spikey-haired boy walked back into the DMV but he was no longer smiling. And the tester, had a different look on his face…a face filled with shock. The teenager walked up to his mom.
“I failed….I got a zero.”
“How? How did you get a zero?”
“I drove into someone’s lawn…I backed into it. And the owner of the house wasn’t too happy.” Tears filled his eyes.
That teenager was me. I was highly emotional and cocky. But, this experience knocked me down a few pegs. As a teenager, I had a rough time. Stuck in a broken home filled with verbal and physical abuse, I saw this driving test as a way out. That one day, I could hop in a car and take my mother and sister away from our father. Away from the bruises and black eyes we received from him. Away from fear.
I went back to the same DMV two weeks later. The same tester saw me in line and yelled out, “Great, its the lawn guy again.” But this time, I passed