August 5, 2016

Why Losing my License was the Best Possible Thing.


I have always been impatient.

Goal-focused and busy. Constantly doing something. A dreamer, too. A typical Piscean with my head in the clouds and multiple projects on the go. I have many jobs going at any one time, and I like to juggle different events and help with charity initiatives in my spare time.

In my work as a wedding celebrant, I often feel an urgency to respond quickly, be early, run circles around people, and work nonstop until I have done all I can to ensure everything is perfect. Currently, I’m handling a big move, a new job, and my own wedding coming up; there has been a lot going on.

The only thing that stops me in my tracks is sickness or absolute fatigue.

The way I see it is, “C’mon hurry up! I have places to go, people to see, things to do!”

The way I see it is, we have this one life. There is simply not enough time to waste it.

Well, something has stopped me in my tracks. I have been disqualified from driving for a very long time. Not because of drunk driving, but from speeding. Excessive demerit points. Getting caught driving without a license, because I was too impatient to wait for a ride from a friend. The shame.

My excuses: the road rules and excessive amount of speeding cameras has become ridiculous. The system is designed to raise revenue. There has been a lot of change in my life since moving from the big smoke to the country, and I’m unfamiliar with country roads.

My job requires that I do a lot of driving, and it seems getting speeding fines is unavoidable. Everyone gets speeding fines—I was just stupid enough to get caught.

These excuses scratch the surface of a deeper issue.

I am always in a rush and need to slow. Down. And slow down I have.

I am innately happy and bubbly at the best of times, but the isolation and silence of late has caused strain. I’m adjusting to a cold, rainy, quiet winter in this new small town. There is only so much enthusiasm I can muster for going around in weather-proof gear. There are only so many favors I can ask of strangers. The inability to go anywhere and the fact that my life has slowed right down has forced me to take a long hard look at myself.

Who am I?

I’m not just the fun, organized, hard-working, goal-oriented person I thought I was. I’m someone who is always “so busy.” I’m someone who lives a life of chaos and rushes about everywhere. Someone who has “limited time” or “will chat more later.”

I am a naturally positive, albeit impatient person. Even my blood type is B Positive. I’ve had to turn this situation around, and am now choosing to see the benefits of losing my driver’s license. This is precious time for me to look within myself and grow.

All the self-help books that friends and family have purchased for me over the years, growing dusty on the bookshelves—I’m finally reading them. I’m revisiting all those interesting articles on elephant journal I’ve tagged as “important, read later.”

I am learning to relax. I am learning to meditate. I am learning that this is an exciting new me.

You know the age-old saying of turning a new leaf? This is it! The time is now! This is the path to the new life ahead. At this time, the loss of my license is the best possible thing to happen to me. If it were not for this adversity, I would not be the person I am learning to be.

I want to share this with you because you are possibly just like me. Whether you cop speeding fines or not, the chances are that you work work work, go go go, play play play play—until you drop. Or until you get sick. Or something goes wrong.

Yes, I am still resolute that we have this one life and there is simply not enough time to waste it. However, rather than suffering the consequences of speeding through it blindly, I am going to take a detour. Get there on time. Enjoy it.

It is time to slow down.


Author: Joanne Armstrong

Images: Pexels

Apprentice Editor: Katerina Kan; Editor: Toby Israel

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