Thursday, July 28, 2016

Alex's First Driving Lesson



Song:  To Zanarkand (Extended)

From:  FF X



Alex started on a journey of danger and adventure...
no less deadly than the many monsters of Final Fantasy X.

Alex had his first lesson in driving today.

His Zanarkand is mastery of the basics of safe driving...
and the safe arrival at all of his future destinations.

In the meantime...
I am his teacher...
I am his guide...
and through careful and graduated experience in all the various driving scenarios...
I will teach him how to keep himself...
and all who will eventually ride with him...
safe.



This is our car...
and it will eventually be Alex's car.

I first drove us to a nearby elementary school parking lot so Alex could get use to
gently accelerating and stopping...turning and parking.






We started at around 7:15 in the evening...
and after about 1.5 hours here...


I drove home...
and I then had Alex get back into the driver's seat.

Alex then spent another half an hour driving around the neighborhood at night.

My main lesson for this night was for him to stay in his lane as he drove 
through our neighborhood.

At first, Alex was apprehensive when another car approached from the opposite direction...
but overall, he did well in keeping in his lane, while keeping correct distance from the 
parked cars on his side of the road.

He did some Y turns and some 360 roundabouts...
and he used his turn signals correctly.

His stopping and acceleration had also greatly improved over the night.

So...
for Alex's first night's lesson...
he had accomplished much.

He had gotten a feel for the car...
and he learned how to not fear driving by concentrating 
on staying on his portion of the road regardless of distractions.


Alex at home after his 2 hour lesson.

Alex feels comfortable in his new glasses.

Barring a vacation away from home...
I will be teaching Alex to drive on a daily basis...
at least 1 hour's worth...
every day or night.

I will ensure the basics are thoroughly learned by mastery through repetition...
until everything becomes second nature...
before I advance him to the next task.



----------------------



I am going to be honest...
I had to go drill sergeant on Alex a few times
(as a last resort...after numerous attempts of more gentle persuasion).

In driving...
it must be taken with the absolute and utmost seriousness...
for the consequences of anything less given...
is death.


Although Alex was very serious...
he was initially too apprehensive and prone to a panic response
as opposed to a smooth and gradual application of his motor skills
(my glasses flew off my head more than once as a result of 
his too vigorous application of the brakes).


I had to have him temporarily fear my wrath more than
his apprehension of driving.

After he settled down...
and we concentrated on just one skill at a time...
he ended up doing quite well.

After the night's lesson...
we talked on the sofa about what had transpired...
and the reason I had to get loud and profane...
or what I call...
going drill sergeant.

As I had told him...
when all else fails...
in the end...
it is the safe and successful accomplishment of the mission that matters...
not a person's feelings.

The number one mission all throughout his life is one of safety.

Safety is mission critical...
and mission number one.

I will do anything to ensure Alex stays safe in life.

He could end up with some hurt feelings...
but he SHALL be safe.

------------

For those who think that a child should never be yelled at...
you are wrong.

Now...
it shouldn't be used as a first response...
but when all else fails...
going drill sergeant is sometimes necessary.

I am still thankful to all of my drill sergeants in the Army.

They did what had to be done to get us to perform at levels
we initially hadn't thought we were capable of.

Just as we had...
a child knows when something is necessary.

He appreciates it if it improves his life.


What is most hurtful...
is to be abandoned...
to have an adult not care enough to ensure 
the child is guided on the correct path in life...
even if he has to be knocked back in line sometimes.

To be deserted by a laissez faire attitude from a parent...
is laziness of the parent...at best.


-------------


My last message for Alex for the night was what was drilled into us in the Army:

'You don't have to like it.
You just have to do it.'

These words were not expressed for obedience.

The message was that the mission is what is important...
not the feelings of anyone involved.

Or more aptly put:

Needs come before wants or desires.

You simply must do what must be done to effect a later and greater good...
regardless of any desires to the contrary or to escape discomfort...
including those of pain or fear...
 those of fatigue or lassitude...
or those of pessimism or the pursuit of hedonism.


The mission here is one of mastery of a very necessary life skill...
and one where any lacking thereof...
can be life altering.


'You don't have to like it.
You just have to do it.'...
applies to me as well.

I hate having to go drill sergeant.

But sometimes...
I must...
to ensure the ultimate safety of my son...
Alex.


The mission is that of safety...
regardless of the fear of the journey.

I had to get him over the fear of driving...
so he could truly start to learn.

On this first night...
mission accomplished.

By the end of the night...
his driving was much more natural and smooth...
for he no longer feared the car...
or the other cars on the road.

He may now learn in small easily mastered steps...
and it will then be a simple matter of placing the left foot forward and then the right...
and repeating.


-------------------


Why yell at all?

Why not just gently repeat the lessons until the person gets it?


BECAUSE...
in real life...
in many situations...
there is not the luxury of time.

A man must sometimes do something at that time.

He must be able to conquer timidity when necessary...
on the spot...in the moment...right then and there.

If he never had to conquer a fear...
if he always had the time to do something over again and again...
 he will most likely fail...
or never even attempt...
a greatly rewarding path in life...
due to fear.


A person must realize that sometimes...

'You don't have to like it.
You just have to do it.'...
and sometimes...
it must be done right then...
and right there.



















2 comments:

  1. Teaching your child to drive has to be one of the most stressful things a parent has to do. I don't know that my own son will be capable of learning to drive, but I don't look forward to teaching him if he is.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yesterday was a much better experience. Alex actually did quite well with everything. We will be doing more of the same tonight...four way and two way stops, roundabouts, new roads, and more parking practice.

    It is becoming more enjoyable now...for both of us. We prepared for today by putting rain x on the exterior front windows and mirrors, and anti fog on the interior front windows and mirrors. We will commence the night's lesson in half an hour.

    ReplyDelete

Please feel free to comment on this article.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...