Unfortunately I have been unable to drive for the last six months because of health problems. However, the day has at last arrived (along with the Certificate of Insurance to prove it,) when I can get behind the wheel again. Typical of me, I can’t help thinking about people who are unable to drive ever again, perhaps because of illness or age or disability, and that brings me on to issues that have been going round in my head.
At university in our Pastoral Care lectures, much was made of the fact that throughout our lives we suffer losses; starting from birth itself, leaving the comfort of the dark, mysterious world of the womb. I always found it difficult to give due weight to the theory that these losses would somehow help to prepare us for the bad losses that inevitably occur throughout life. But as the years go by have been more aware of that truth.
Death of someone close to us is obviously a biggie, as is losing health or losing sight, hearing or even mind. Ultimately we have to let go of this world, and it is true to say that we can only live well, when we have accepted this fact. Knowing our own mortality and weaknesses helps us to have more compassion for others. Understanding that life is a gift and can end at any time, helps us to make the most of each day.
Today, then, is a loss and a gain. It is the loss of not being able to drive. And it is the gain of being able to drive. I’d be interested in hearing other people’s losses and gains this week. But….enough philosophising; time to practice getting the car in and out of the driveway.