This month has been about bravery for me: I painted my toenails bright blue, I bought some crazy leggings, and I drove my car for the first time in two years.
I got my driver’s license back.
I feel like I’m 16 again. (Hence the leggings and blue toenails.)
I sobbed when I opened that letter: reinstated. It felt like my entire life was being reinstated. Reinstatement meant independence. Reinstatement meant freedom from my rigid, hyper-planned schedule. Reinstatement meant that I didn’t have to rely so heavily on my husband and my grandma and my parents and my in-laws and my sister. I had become so used to planning my life around other people’s availability (because I always needed a chauffeur) that I had forgotten what true freedom felt like.
When you have epilepsy, driving is scary. These past two years have been filled with anxiety and fear: epilepsy is such an unpredictable disorder, and just because a medication is working now doesn’t mean it always will. I was terrified of having another accident or causing an accident or destroying someone’s house or killing a pet dog or hitting a school bus full of kindergarteners...okay, I have to stop now. I can’t let myself fall down that rabbit hole of horrors.
I can’t live my life in constant fear, even if those fears are legitimate.
I’m more hesitant than I was at 16--I have driven twice now, and I did ujjayi breaths before I even started the car. But just getting behind the wheel was a huge, terrifying, life-changing step for me. Starting the car was another.
And driving six miles to the store to buy my own groceries with pink leggings and blue toenails?