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Driving Confidence

First Day of Driver’s Education and I was taking the class as a school requirement only. It was my dad who taught me how to drive at a very early age.

I remember multiple times sitting on my dad’s lap and driving around the neighborhood. As I got older, it was me in the drivers seat. He was quite patient as we would drive around the parking lot, backing in and out of the parking space, as I learned how to parallel park. It was a necessity in Chicago. You couldn’t drive without the knowledge and experience.

I have no horror stories, no moments when I came home crying to my mom from the experience. As a matter of fact, I just remember being confident because of his positive reinforcement. “You’ve got this!” “Ok, I want you to cut the wheel to the right to back slowly into that spot, Great Job!” “Ok, I want you to back into this spot and take as much time as you need.”

And when he stuck that handwritten note in the window of the vehicle that stated “student driver”, that was the only time I was embarrassed. However, when I look back, it was the best thing that he could’ve done. It told everyone on the road, that I may make a mistake, so get out of the way.

My dad took the time to tell me what to do if I got into an accident. Phone the police first, then him, and to make sure that I got the license plate number of the other car, just in case the driver took off. And most importantly, to always exchange car insurance information. He told me, “If you get into an accident, it is ok. A car can be replaced, but his baby girl couldn’t.”

Got a teenage daughter? Consider the ways you will build her up to be the next best driver to hit the road.


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