My first car crash happened in August  2021. I was just three weeks into learning to drive( My turns were still  bad).It wrecked my car and messed with me emotionally and mentally .
It happened when I was joining a main road . There was a car parked close to the junction so I had to drive further onto the main road and closer to the other lane . Everything happened so fast. One moment, there was a dispatch rider approaching in the middle of the road which was unexpected and I mistakenly stepped on the gas pedal with the force with which I intended to step on the brakes.I flew over a gutter and into a wall fortunately or unfortunately because the wall stopped the car.
I look back many times than I want to and try to think of things  I could have done differently at the time .
In many days and some months after, I felt like the luckiest unlucky driver; lucky because if I had not driven into the wall, I would have caused a lot of wreckage on the road which would have made news headlines; lucky because I could have killed the dispatch rider because the speed at which I flew would have killed any human on impact;lucky because I was alive and  the only real damages were to the wall and car which could be fixed.I felt so unlucky because I had used all my savings to buy the car and I felt that this accident meant to tell me that buying the car was a very wrong decision. I felt so unlucky because I could not figure out how to do turns(I was such a scaredy-cat on the road) and that  maybe driving was just not meant for me. The way I wrecked the car, nobody would have been surprised if I had quit driving.Maybe I would have but the circumstances at the time meant that I was stuck with the car for another four years. Driving again was scary. I kept having flashes of the accident and at the beginning,  I thought I should have just given up driving. Somehow, it all worked out for me because I am a good driver now.
Now, the main reason for this post is that I have realised increasingly that my family members always have a comment or two to make when I am chauffeuring them.
You turned too close to the gutter or the curb.”
“You turn  like a new driver.”
” You should not have allowed that driver to join because you have more right of way.”
“Don’t park here, park there .”
These comments really got to me and I used to ask myself if I am just a bad driver.  What I realised along the way while also being driven around is that I am just like other drivers on the  road. There is nothing wrong. We all make mistakes here and there and there is no perfect way  as long one  drives defensively, stays in his lane,obeys traffic rules and does not end up hitting a curb or falling into a gutter.
I also realised that no matter how far I have come, the people who know my driving story and have seen my journey as a driver may never appreciate how much better I have become . To them , I will always be that driver who always has problems with her turns. Only people who do not understand my story will really value my driving skills.

This scenario happens a lot in other areas of life . For example ,at work, one’s colleagues or employer may not be able to tell how much someone has grown because they were part or saw the growth process. The lesson here is that one must always not allow himself to be stuck at the same place because one may not be acknowledged as much as elsewhere. That is the reason people keep switching jobs even if the previous workplace conditions are awesome.

It is just that one needs to step out to be respected .

2 thoughts on “Growth

  1. Inspiring story Nina. I never thought deeply when i heard of your crash. It really was an accident! I’m glad you did not let that stop you from driving. We learn to face our fears and keep being positive. Thank you for this reminder.

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