One Big Step Closer !

   I am fed up with myself. I need my freedom and I need it now! I am 46 years old and feel like I have done so much in my life already, this one BIG thing (not driving) holds me prisoner to my former self.
   So a couple of weeks ago, I went to the online DMV site and made an appointment to take the written (permit) test. I downloaded a PDF of the manual and a test program (that was great!) and I studied for an hour a day for a four days.

   Yesterday, I realized that my appointment was a half hour away and panicked that I would miss it. I kept this whole thing a secret from my husband as I wanted to do this whole thing ON MY OWN. So I had to run---I put on my running shoes and workout wear and ran! YES physically ran, the 1.5 miles to the DMV and just made it. I was hot and sweaty but I figured, its just a written test..who cares?

   I get there, stand in my line and pay the fees. My heart starts to beat and I deep breathe to calm myself down. Then the lady sends me over to get my picture taken! (WHAT? Before I take the test?? Holy hell..I am hot sweaty and the like!) But I took the picture, and proceed to the testing area.

   Now as I go through the 32 questions, I constantly remind myself to calm down, slow down and breathe. Rushing will not help me. I consistently hear the examiner telling person after person that they failed! At least 6 times in a row.. all licensed drivers who are failing the test! I tried to ignore that.

   I took the test and lightly marked the four questions that I was not sure of. Then I went back and rechecked those answers.

   I got in the line to check my test, and kept hearing over and over "I am sorry, you failed. You will have to take the test again." It got to my turn, and she said "Very good. 95%. Go to Window 2 to pick up your forms." 

  What? I did it? Whoo HOOO! I signed and picked up my forms and looked at my permit with pride. I did it. I have a problem with being anxious with testing to the point of avoidance, so this was a big first step for me.

   Now on to driving lessons! I post this for those of you who are not only fearful of driving but fearful of TESTING. If I can do this, anyone can.

My license pic will not be the best but it will show how happy I was! 

miasperanza miasperanza
46-50, F
20 Responses May 23, 2009

I just wanted to tell you that I enjoyed reading about you over coming your fear. It took me 8 years to work up the courage to take my written test, and one day I too was fed up and decided I had enough. In the state of Colorado We get to hold a permit for 3 years, 2 month's nearing my expiration date, I decided that I refuse to renew a permit! so I called a driving school and followed through. After six 2 hour classes my instructor felt like I was ready to take my drive test. I passed:) I was so happy because it was liberating to even hold an actual drivers license in my name. Then finally my circumstances started to change, and public transportation became really aggravating. One day I walked to the dealership and the next thing I knew, I was a new car owner, now after driving for two days, I'm still a bit nervous and anxious. So to see someone who's older than myself, but still what I call a late bloomer like me do it, gives me hope. God bless you.

This was a fun story to read; I'm glad you were able to overcome your fear/s. Have you since gotten your license?<br />
I have a few anecdotal comments - My cousin was told during driver's ed that "D" doesn't stand for "drive", it stands for "death", and that made her deathly afraid to drive! My sister got into a few minor car accidents, and then developed a fear of turning left, so she would instead make a large spiral of right turns down to her final destination. My mom came to America when she married my dad at the age of 25, and she learned to drive by taking the driving test multiple times. My mom now has her D/L; and both my cousin and sister can drive okay now - I guess driving itself is a form of exposure therapy!

Thanks for sharing. I too suffer from driving phobia. It makes me feel so alone because I am the only one that I know personally that has a fear of driving. I'm am 33 and have gotten my permitt 3 times and have driven with my husband and a friend but not for a couple of years. I hope one day I can overcome this

Thumbs up for you! I have passed the written test twice, but never went to take a driving class. <br />
Are you going to take your driving classes in a driving school or just plan to ask family member or friends to teach you?

I can relate, it took me long to get my drivers license due to a number of reasons such as, fear/anxiety of driving, lacking the funds for the classes, myself, etc. I received my license for the first time 2 years ago when I was 31 & had my provisionals taken off this past February, now my next step is to finally own a car. I'm very happy for you, this is a big step that you took & this is an inspirational story for people of all ages who are going through the same thing, best wishes on getting the license.

Good for you...good luck! xD

That's great you did it. Fear fails again

Thats great. WAY TO GO....

Thank You, your a great inspiration hun :o) I am 32 yrs young! and I would love to drive also - looking forward to really trying and getting through this time, take care and drive safe xx

i am ashamed...i am 42 years old ..ive had my temperary permit 6 diffrent times in my life...taken the driven only once,and failed,ive aloud this anxioty to run my life..and...i want to drive,i want that freedom and indepence...ive always been ashamed to talk about why i dnt so happy to have found this sight...i need help..

Congratulations you have achieved a huge thing by being able to learn to drive your independence will sore. Enjoy!!!!

that is an amazin story n 1 thing....EVERYONE want s FREEDOM girl especially the wives...haha:)

bravo! great way to look at things!

I think the picture looks great. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!

It is a wonderful picture, if I ever feel sad I will come back to look at it. xxx

Happy for you!!!! Yes, we (i'm 40) need to break those ties that bound us to our ordinary days and just take a leap up, testing our own ability ..... it's great that you decided to take up the challenge by yourself (not involving your husband) so you can see the real value that you actually have inside.... <br />
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Go on...don't stop there....go out and find out tons of opportunities waiting to be touched by you...

I am sooooooooooooo proud of you. It is fun to drive and you get a sense of independence. Good Luck to you.

Driving is a relaxation. Very soon you will realise that you have some control of atleast something.

wow. what a story! That is exactly why I feared driving. In fact, shortly after getting my first license at at 28 I too got into an accident. Never to drive again. You are a brave and inspirational person!

Good for you! I am in my 20's - and I have had a terrible fear of driving since I was 16 & saw a terrible accident. One man in it was virtually decapitated - his head was hanging by a thread of skin. My bf at the time and I were trapped right next to the collision for over 20min & had to give statements to the Police even though we only saw the actual "crunch" of the accident. 2 couples dead: probably just driving to work (& bickering) like us. I couldn't stand the burden of feeling responsible for the lives of others, so for years hid behind "environmental awareness", which I still try to live up to by the way... Anyway: now I feel free, just like you, and I too have a Licence photo in which I look like the 'cat who just got the cream'!