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Sassy called me late last Sunday night from college. We talked about this and that, catching up on the details of college life. We encouraged her to take her car to help make her treks to the athletic field easier, and we knew that many of the others girls on this small campus had their vehicles, as well.
After a few minutes talking about random things, she began to talk about the real reason she called.
“We didn’t have (field hockey) practice Friday night. Instead, they showed us a film about a great high school athlete. He was very talented, cute and popular, and going to college for football. Then they showed him being in a horrible car accident and how he was killed. It was so depressing!”
I knew in my heart what was coming.
“I really didn’t need to see that. I realize that most people don’t really understand how it feels when it happens to someone you know, but it was so hard to watch. I already KNOW about alcohol and driving. I already KNOW about not using your phone, or doing anything when you are driving. I know what it’s like to live with that every day. I wish I didn’t know, but I do.”
I listened to her talk, but I was remembering the fine young man we lost when he was a 16 year-old driver. My heart ached with the memory of him, and I knew that hers did as well. We have all prayed that other families never have to live through that kind of trauma, but I know they will.
My children (Sassy and Bitchy in particular) are fully aware of the dangers of distracted driving- and are adamant about that danger with anyone and every one who will listen. Frankly, I DO think they’ve impacted all their friends, and anyone who has ridden with them these last few years.
IN this small, small way they hope and pray that even just those few lives that they touch with this important message are kept safe and secure.
I have asked Sassy why she is so incredibly adamant with her friends about the phone issue in the car.
“Mom, no one knows; no one but us. But you know what? I don’t WANT anyone else to know what this is like. So, I do what I do. I yell at YOU, I yell at dad, and I’ll yell at anyone else who thinks that driving distracted is cool.”
That’s my girl.