Who’s going to drive you home tonight?

I can’t believe I actually used to enjoy driving when now it’s become something that is so riddled with anxiety.  This afternoon I’ve driven to get the Small Child from school as per usual.  I was driving down Meadowlands Road and there was a motorcycle rider behind me…. too close behind me for my liking.

So I sped up a little and he kept coming, and I sped up a little more and he just kept tight on my tail.  As we got to the end of the road and was turning onto Creek Road, I could tell by the position of the traffic that the green light in front of me would soon be turning amber so I accelerated a little more and went around the corner – no problem.  I looked in my rear view mirror to see if the motorcyclist had followed me through the lights but he wasn’t behind me.  I looked over my right shoulder and he hadn’t stopped at the lights either.  I looked in my left hand mirror and then I saw him.  He had gone into the corner way too fast, lost control of his bike and slamming directly into the gutter.  As I was getting ready to pull over to check on him, I saw him dusting himself off and getting back on his bike and re-entering traffic.  So he seemed fine though no doubt was was probably a bit shaken by coming off his bike.

Watching that little episode play out infront of me… well technically – behind me… was a little disturbing and was just one more little reminder that you can’t trust what other people are doing on the road.  But then I turned left into Stanley Street and the traffic was all backed up and there were cars on the wrong side of the road and as we all crawled around the corner going very slow I saw the source of the problem – a child had been hit by a ute.  There were about 8 people standing around on mobile phones, someone in a construction workers reflective vest leaning over the child putting something under his head and placing a coat over him while they were obviously waiting for an ambulance… the incident had obviously only just happened moments before.

Which is where I lost it… within about 100m there was the inept motorcyclist careering into the footpath and now a pedestrian hit by a car and I started hyperventilating, clenching my teeth, rubbing my face and the tears started… I felt shocked and unreasonably frightened and I desperately wanted to get the fuck out of my car!   My initial instinct was to pull over, get out of and call Mr K because I felt like I just couldn’t drive and I really didn’t want to drive but I had to get the Small Child from school. 

I drove on slowly trying hard to compose myself and just knew that if I pulled over I’d be stuck there and wouldn’t be able to make myself get back in the car.  I crept along doing about 40 the remainder of the drive to school, waited in the queue trying to calm down.  I had an overwhelming urge to get out and felt like I was having to choke that feeling down and was covering my mouth because I felt like I was going to scream.  I collected my charge and drove home still crying and trying to ask him calm and banal questions about his day to distract myself (which I failed at miserably) and he got all worried about me.

When I got home I sat in the car in the garage for about ten minutes trying to regain composure because my cousin, Erick the Half a Bee also suffers PTSD relating to car accidents and I am sure he didn’t need me to come inside all upset and share my anxiety from these incidents with him too!  I’m exhausted and I totally don’t want to get in the car… ever…. again.

What to do… what to do???

Tell me what you think