Driving Lessons

My twelve and a half year old son has started driving lessons. No, not those driving lessons – power wheelchair driving lessons! It coincides with the car driving lessons my nearly sixteen year old niece is taking right now. Both kids are more excited and far less nervous than I felt at the prospect of getting my driver’s license way back when.

I didn’t like driving and was among the younger of the girls in my gaggle of friends so I didn’t feel the lack of freedom that driving would afford. I had willing friends to get me wherever I needed or wanted to be without the hassle of having to drive or worry about getting a car. I was nearly seventeen when I finally dragged my mom to the DMV for my driving test, which I passed handily, though I still had little interest in actually driving! To be honest, I’m still not a fan.

Today though, my son and niece are both anticipating the independence and freedom that will come with their success at driving lessons. Both are taking it seriously and enthusiastically practicing with the intention of having the ability to take off on their own once they’re, for my niece licensed, and for my son approved for a power wheelchair.

For him it will mean he’ll have the ability, for the first time in his life, to move himself entirely by choice and to places entirely of his choosing. His free will is somewhat trapped by his own body and by the obedience of his parents, caregivers, and friends who fall in the charge of pushing his wheelchair to the places he needs to be or where we want him to be, but not always or necessarily to where he chooses to be.

It’s hard to fathom what this new freedom will feel like to him.

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