When it came to learning how to drive, I was a late bloomer; getting my permit and license didn’t seem like a priority to me. Due to skipping a grade in school, all of my friends/peers were a year older than me and received their licenses a full year before I did. If I wanted to get somewhere I would tag along with my friends or I took the City Bus. Plus, driving in Vermont in the Winter just sucks! I still hate it 20 years later as-much-or-more so than I did when I was 16! … unless, of course, there is no snow or ice on the roads.
Teaching your teen how to drive a car
When my daughter was a pre-teen I had to drive her around to the barn, friends houses, dances, school events, etc… it would drive me bonkers because she wanted to go somewhere every day, all day! I would find myself repeating “I can’t wait until you get your license”. Well, now that the time is here – it FREAKS me out!
Don’t get me wrong, my daughter is actually a very good driver. Partly, because she has been driving a Gator at the barn for over a year (since she started doing barn chores.) That Gator has definitely taught her the basics of how to drive…
Getting her Permit
Months before my daughter turned 15, she began studying for her Driver’s Permit test. She was ecstatic about getting her Permit and was counting the days until she could start learning how to drive while actually driving a real car. At this point, all of her friends were already 15 years old (some 16 yrs old) and already driving. Which means they were already posting pictures on their Snapchat, Instagram, Finsta (Fake Instagram – yep, I know), VSCO, Facebook, and on and on. Yes. Quite the list of Social Media Channels… does anyone else have a teen with exposure to so many channels?! I feel like I even may have missed some 🙂 Anyway, the big day was finally here! Her 15th birthday!
And she passed!
My daughter aced the permit exam with flying colors! She was ecstatic! She wanted to go hop in the car and start driving… but she couldn’t; not yet. We were on our way to NYC for a few days to celebrate the kids birthdays! Yes – my kids birthday’s are back to back. They’re exactly 5 years 364 days, 8 hours and 23 minutes apart. My son was almost born on my daughter’s birthday and he was born on my Mother-in-law’s birthday. So that week is very busy for us – our wedding anniversary, both kids birthdays and my mother-in-law’s birthday! We like to celebrate in NYC so that we can all celebrate together (M.I.L. lives in NYC). To read about our adventure in NYC that weekend
Driving for the first time
She has already completed the Driver’s Ed course – we really wanted her to take the course in the middle of a harsh Vermont winter. Winter here can either be a complete nightmare where we’re blanketed in several feet of snow or we don’t get any snow at all! In Vermont, we like to say “You can get all 4 Seasons + Mud Season in one day!” You honestly never know what the weather is going to do. That Mother Nature sure is a tricky one.
Teaching your teen how to drive a car
My advice – SAFETY FIRST! STAY CALM!
Before my daughter even gets in the car and starts driving we put 6 STUDENT DRIVER magnets all over my car! It lets all the drivers on the road know that “Hey there, my kid’s learning how to drive – so be patient!” This helps bring me peace of mind too because I’m less worried about someone trying to zoom by her or tailgate her. For the most part, everyone has been very supportive, patient, and understanding. So, thank you my fellow Vermonters 🙂
I wasn’t sure how I was going to react sitting in the passenger seat while my daughter was driving. I was, and am, surprisingly calm in that seat. I thoroughly enjoy our “car chats”, and teaching her another life skill; it’s like learning how to read or ride a bike but more advanced. It’s proving that she is getting older and will soon be heading off to College (which I am not ready for AT ALL!)
Is your child driving? How are you feeling about it? Are you getting sentimental like I am?