Learning to drive


Later this week I’ll be sitting my driving test for the first time. I could have started learning to drive three and a half years ago, but I decided against it at the time, I wasn’t interested; I had other things on my mind. I was struggling emotionally, and I was probably at my lowest point around that time too. There was a lot of pressure to perform at school, as I was preparing for exams. I was beginning to crumble.

I couldn’t start driving on top of all that; it would have been too much for me. For a long time since I have been a little scared of learning to drive. I could only see the dangers every time I thought about it. What I’ve since realised is that I wasn’t afraid of driving, I was afraid of failing the test.

Driving tests are notoriously easy to fail, especially first time. Failing one is not a big deal, but it was for me at the time. I couldn’t cope with another failure, having not done so well at school. Incompetency, I feared, was becoming a character trait.

In the months since then, my general demeanour has improved as I’ve started to learn about dealing with my struggles with anxiety and depression. Now I feel ready, of course, I’m a little anxious, but that can be a good thing sometimes. Whether I pass or fail come test day, at least I’ve given it a shot. That’s progress right?



12 Comments Add yours

  1. perfectionhasapriceblog says:

    I am actually in the same EXACT situation as you…almost literally word for word. Good luck with your test!!! 🙂

    1. M_McKeen says:

      Thank you! 🙂 the same to you too!!

  2. Matt,
    First I want to wish you the best of luck on your driving test! Second of all, you’re right, whether you pass or fail, you’re still going to try and that counts for a great deal of progress! I’m so proud of you and you should be very proud of yourself.

    I just want to say that I believe that something as important as driving shouldn’t be necessarily rushed. What I mean by this is that if a person doesn’t feel like they can handle it, they shouldn’t feel as if they have to rush into it. Just like you said, you didn’t feel ready at the time so you waited. Driving is a very big deal and I think that if someone doesn’t feel safe about it, they should wait until they’re in a better mindset and really feel like they can handle it – I don’t see anything wrong with that. I think that when it comes to driving, we have to think about what’s best for us and the safety of others, not what others expect of us. Great post, Matt!

    1. M_McKeen says:

      Thanks B, I really appreciate you taking the time to say such kind words. I couldn’t agree with you more, it’s very important to feel comfortable with what we’re doing, we don’t want to push ourselves too far! It’s not important whether I pass or fail, the main thing is that I’ll have given it a go. It’s not exactly like I’m in a rush or anything. Glad to read that you’re doing ok this week! 🙂

      1. Exactly and thank you!

  3. Lusuna says:

    It took me ages to learn to drive, and I used to feel really anxious about it. I think you’ve made a good decision to wait till you were in a better head space to learn, and you have a really positive attitude going into it. I hope you don’t feel too anxious about it, and good luck! 😀

    1. M_McKeen says:

      It’s nice to know that I’m not alone! Thank you. I hope so, as I’ve said, I think I’m in a better place now than I was back then. Just feels like it’s the right time 🙂

  4. Good luck. I, too, took forever to drive. Don’t tell anyone this but I was 24. I don’t say that often.

    1. M_McKeen says:

      Sure thing, it can be our little secret! It’s nothing to be ashamed of, we all pass when the time is ready for us.

      1. Thanks for that… I feel much better 🙂

  5. I’m going to be doing my drivers test this month and my anxiety has kept me from doing this for years and I’m 24. I’m terrified. I hope you pass your test!

    1. M_McKeen says:

      Thanks, you too!! 🙂 Part of me is terrified if I’m honest. It’s not so much the driving, it’s the failing that still scares me 😦 We should both feel proud that we’re giving it a go, though anxiety doesn’t always let us think that way!

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