The purpose of my blog and (soon to be) video posts is to keep me honest and accountable. Nothing more. However, when I read emails, tweets, comments here and Facebook messages of encouragement, it humbles me. With the amount of abuse I have taken about my weight over the years, I admit that I was very jaded to the idea of being open and honest with myself and the public at large about what I was going through. Some of those abuses were definitely of my own creation, but there are a few that stand out as particularly cruel and made me very reluctant to share my journey. Fortunately, of all the remarks I have received, they have been full of love for which I am very thankful and grateful. So, let’s battle back some of those negative thoughts with today’s post about how Saturday was so terrible.
My journey is going to be tough. It’s going to challenge me. I am going to doubt myself at almost every step and since I have to be honest with myself, I already have had my first moment of doubt.
Early in 2016, I decided I was going to make this a year of changes and better things. One of those was deciding to finally go out and get my license. Either I am too proud to ask or friends and family were unaware, but I needed to get some behind the wheel experience. Without any immediate way to do that, I decided to sign up for Drivers Education courses with the Ottawa Drivers School. I took four-afternoon courses and would have to do 10 in-car driving lessons. None of this proved to be worth while for me.
The in-class work was dull. The instructor was, to be as nice as possible, quite old and felt a little out of touch. The instructor began by telling us that he was a retired Young Drivers of Canada and DriveTest instructor. That’s great. He would quickly tell us to take our tests in Winchester ON, where it was “easier.” His videos he chose to use were all very old, but moreover, were sometimes jarring and graphic in nature … and he provided little to no context as to why we’re watching of these. We were given this course book we had to fill in crash scenarios for, write about our codriver’s habits away from classes and do in-class assessments of different scenarios. Instead of the six of us in total working over the book together, the instructor simply gave us the answers. And to cap it all off, the last two quizzes were multiple choice where he accepted multiple answers on a number of questions. In short, the class was a total waste of time and money ($699.00).
On the final day of my courses, I was to go driving with an in-car instructor. She showed up and parked a block away from my home and texted me. I wasn’t impressed. Then when she did finally get to my home, her little Honda Civic was a mess. I had to physically move stuff from the floor of the back seat just so I could adjust the front seat. Now, I have never had luck with Civics. Ever. I couldn’t comfortably get in and out of the car, so I said I don’t feel comfortable. She was polite enough and I would go to my course without some experience. When I got there, I explained myself to the instructor and how I needed a car with a little more room in it. He called the office and I was recommended to another instructor who drove a Toyota Camry. I was a little leery because I knew that the Camry was going to be a tight fit, but I should be at least be able to get in and adjust the seat and get myself into a position to drive safely.
On Saturday, my instructor was ten minutes late. I was already annoyed by that. He was a fit fella, nice enough I guess, and I got into the car easily. However, I kept my foot off of the gas and thus bent my knee a little and he immediately said “no, this isn’t safe” and told me my thigh brushing lightly at the wheel in my current position was no good. I wasn’t too happy and told him my size and weight is something I’m working on, which honestly I should not have said because he then gave me nutrition and health advice…. That pissed me off. I told him that wasn’t acceptable and he then told me if I got someone with a truck or a van to borrow, he’d still “teach me.”
That flat out ruined my day and brought back all those nagging naysaying feelings… You can imagine I feel about all of this and now I am left demanding my money back from a company that I feel I should have never went with all to save some cash.