Saturday, February 21, 2009

A week without freedom

It has been a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad week. I still do not have a license to drive. People have been so helpful and kind to me, especially my neighbor who has been driving me to work every day, that it seems churlish to complain, but I really, really do not like the feeling of not being able to jump into my car and go wherever I want.

A dear friend of mine helped me identify this malaise after a few days in which I was in a crummy, despairing, yet un-self-aware mood. The whole thing is taking me back to the days of childhood, when my time was not my own and when I was in constant trouble for waiting until the last minute, requiring my parents to run out to the store at the last minute for school or personal supplies, which they very much resented. I can't say I blame them, but in adulthood I have kind of gotten used to my way of doing things, which means if I run out of dog food I can go out in the evening after work and get some. And I don't mind that it's at the last minute. The world has become more accommodating to me as well, what with stores being open all the time and everything. But this week running out of dog food was problematic. Would I ask my neighbor to stop somewhere on the way home, even though I've been trying as hard as I can to minimize my impact on her driving habits? Would I take a chance that I could drive to the store and not get caught? I spent WAY too much time this week thinking about dog food, and if that sounds dumb, try living it. My life felt full of petty concerns that I could do nothing about. In the end my friend solved the problem by suggesting I pick up some food on the Corner during lunch time, which is what I did.

Decisiveness has eluded me and I think it's largely been due to the lack of autonomy I've felt. With fewer options open to me, I flailed about thinking obsessively of the few crummy options I could imagine. I have a feeling that, when the license arrives, I will feel the world open to me in a really lovely way. Maybe I'll never take having a license for granted again, but that's doubtful. It's just not the human way. But for a few days, I'm sure, I'll be happy just thinking that I have my license, and with it, my freedom.

UPDATE: My new license arrived in today's mail, finally -- let's just say a watched mailbox never spontaneously generates mail -- and I am free again!

No comments: