Driving and Asperger’s, Learning can be a challenge, but it was worth it!

When I got in that car three months ago, I didn’t think I could get it out of the parking lot. That day, I not only drove around the parking lot, but on the surrounding roads as well.

Eventually I would leave the parking lot more and beginning to drive from the parking lot where we practiced to my house, a mile away. Next would come to the point where I would be on country roads. This progressed to the point where I would go through several small towns.

Local Highways were the next step, the first time I was on an expressway, I drove from my house to the California Toll Plaza on the Mon-Fayette Expressway. After that, I blended country Roads, the expressways, including I-70 from Rostraver to New Stanton and the Roundabouts there.

One day, my lesson included the Tippecanoe Road, The Albany Tunnel and some new instances. Another lesson soon after that, I had to go back to that same area, and was well seasoned by that point.

The last part, the parallel parking and three point turn came sort of natural to me, it just took practice to blend in with the test. I only had one day notice that my instructor scheduled my test. Yes, I was anxious and I did worry, but I knew he wouldn’t had scheduled it if I wasn’t a safe driver.

Believe it or not, I was pretty calm during the test. My driving instructor watched me parallel park and said I did excellent. I made one minor error during the exam and now know how to fix it. Nonetheless, I feel comfortable driving on the road, and I have some seen some pretty irrational people on the road. I believe I can handle my emotions gracefully and without lashing out at other motorists

I cannot close this blog post without giving credit to my driving instructor. He is truly a godsend. I found his information on a bulletin board in the gas station. I called him, he told me to go through my local office of Vocational Rehabilitation as they would cover the cost of the training as it would be necessary for my job. After the referrals, the paperwork and setting up the lessons, we began. He provided constructive criticism, which helped me know what to do and he praised me when I did something right. He taught special education for over 35 years and opened his own School about 20 years ago as he saw a need for it. I don’t think I would be able to learn from anyone else. In the duration of learning the car was in the shop at least twice that I know of with issues, and I got worried that I would loss my skills. But, I didn’t. There was also a lapse of time where we ran out of time but we picked right up. I am immensly grateful for him.

I don’t know what the future holds for me yet. I continue to live it day by day. I know that having a driver’s license opens up more opportunities for me. I love the work that I do and would like to expand on that a little more, like getting involved with other advocacy groups of our agency such as NAMI and Gay-Straight Alliance. I would also like to continue my photographs alot more, by entering in other fairs in the area. However, this takes time and money to do.

When just stating that I got my license a few days ago, a Facebook friend posted this quote by Dr. Seuss, one of my favorite authors as a child. I am ready to set on my way!

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