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AbigailGermaine

Cloistered Vocation and Driving

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AbigailGermaine

So..... As I am going soon for a live in with my dear, dear sisters, I thought I'd ask a question. 

when I was accepted, one of the things that the sisters wanted me to work on was driving. I am not a teen, and didn't get my license because #1 I don't like the thought of driving #2 when I was 16, I managed to have a (minor) accident in our driveway one of the first times I drove. 

BUT, I was happy to oblige the sisters, and got my learners. The problem is as follows-- driving terrifies me. It is probably the only thing that renders me speechless and stiff. I am trying to get over it, but it is not coming easily at all. I just get behind the wheel, and the first time anything even slightly goes wrong, I freeze. 

I understand that the sisters, even though they are cloistered, need drivers to get them to doctor appointments, etc, but surely having one sister would can't drive isn't going to cripple the transportation system. 

Honestly, driving has become the most humiliating thing I've faced so far.... Stupid teenagers who text can drive without watching the road, and I can't stay between the lines no matter how hard I concentrate...

My current plan is to tell the sisters when I visit honestly what's happening and say that I am going to continue to try to overcome this fear, but that it will probably take longer that the expected time to get the license.... And it may not happen. 

any thoughts about either the driving situation itself or how to talk to the sisters about it would be appreciated.

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JHFamily

The more you drive, the more comfortable you will become.  Everyone is different, though, and someone who is confident will probably reach that point much quicker than someone like you.  All is not lost!  Just drive every chance you get.  Some of my children took to it almost instantly, and others took a really long time.

I think it's fine to speak to the sisters about it.  It may not be that they asked you to learn to drive for the sake of having another driver in the house, but rather to test your obedience and/or your willingness to tackle something that is outside your comfort zone, is humiliating, or is just plain hard.

You can do this!  We will be praying for you.

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nikita92

First things first! The more you talk negative about driving, the more you talk yourself out of wanting to learn how to do it! 

It also sounds like you have some sort of possible phobia about it! And..experiancing that minor "accident" in the driveway..only feeds your negative feelings!      

I submit that you might want to think about obtaining some mental health counseling sessions, to get to the "root" of what is "driving" (no pun intended) your feeling "Terrified"!

Also, I suggest finding and signing up for a full blown drivers education course!

(To me, a right of passage into adulthood was to get my drivers license as it was for my own children!

Alot of parents WANT their children to be able to master this milestone of independence while approaching their own young adulthood!

It use to be offered in High School; but not anymore. (to the best of my limited knowledge)

The first thing the drivers instructor tells the class is...it all has to do with repetition! (Just like JHFamily mentioned) The more one practices it, the more one becomes more efficient at it; then it developes into becomeing second nature and so on! It's true! 

I am in a job profession of doing "mobile security"! That job is statically one..(besides professional Long haul transportation truck drivers)that requires the most where driving is required! 

Second thing- Your community of cloistered nuns!

Having to "get around" is just a fact! We all need to go for a large variety of reasons somewhere at times! Including nuns/sisters..even the AMISH! (Beyond horse and buggy mode of transportation)

It's not like you will be asked to transport your sisters doing long daily commutes back and forth!  So instead of imaging the worse...texting driving teens etc try to think positive thoughts about driving "errands"!

I guess using  "Uber" or "Lyft" is out of the question.lol

 Have some faith and confidence in yourself!  O;-)    You will be just fine with training and drivers education! The fear of the unknown just makes things seem worse then what it actually turns out to be! Your're sisters will be ever grateful that they entrusted YOU for their designated errand driver! ;-)

 

 

Edited by nikita92
Misspelled

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deusluxmea

AbigailGermaine, no advice but you are not alone, I also find driving very, very scary (nearly 40 and don't have my license.)

I am wondering how you might go with a patient and compassionate driving instructor? Good luck! 

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gloriana35

Apart from the very good ideas on this thread - until very recently, monastic life had strict enclosure. (In more recent years, I've heard of contemplative nuns who still can leave the grounds, drive and the like, where previously only externs left the enclosure.) I wonder if the older nuns just assumed that younger women today drive? Even a nun who had driven in the past would not have been able to do so once she entered the cloister. I somehow doubt that they'd turn down a candidate because she does not drive.

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JHFamily
36 minutes ago, gloriana35 said:

I somehow doubt that they'd turn down a candidate because she does not drive.

But they may turn down one that is obstinate and refuses to learn.

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AbigailGermaine

First, thanks for all your advice!

To clarify one thing... Currently I am being taught by the most patient, understanding driving instructor.. My Dad, who is also a former professional driver and was my teacher through all of high school. (I'm homeschooled) 

I also talked to my SD about it today during direction, and he told me to relax, drive as often as possible, and ask for the intercession of St Christopher. 

So that's what we're planning to do.... 

Many thanks for all the prayers! 

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Pax17

It may also be helpful to find a driving school that has a classroom simulator.  A few sessions practicing driving without actually being in a car may prove useful.  This is how my brother was taught years ago in his Los Angeles high school.  He was much better equipped for driving than I was.

How nice that your dad has been your teacher...it took quite a while before my dear father would get in the car if I was driving.  :)

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andibc

You’re going to be fine. If there is a park with a big parking lot, or even a school parking lot after hours, drive around there until you feel calmer. You just have a conditioned association and it will lessen. Google desensitization fear of driving

Every time you get in a car, pray the guardian angel prayer. Many religious orders do this. Then trust your guardian angel who has already kept good watch over you all these years.

I was in three horrible car accidents before the age of 14 and had a great fear of riding in a car, let alone driving. I eventually got my license and you will too. 

Edited by andibc

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Lilllabettt

Driving to me is like swimming. Although some people may find it unpleasant, it's dangerous not to know how. Even if you never end up needing it, the risk of an emergency is too great. I believe my husband's high school required passing a test for both before graduation. 

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dominicansoul
On 9/10/2019 at 10:42 AM, AbigailGermaine said:

First, thanks for all your advice!

To clarify one thing... Currently I am being taught by the most patient, understanding driving instructor.. My Dad, who is also a former professional driver and was my teacher through all of high school. (I'm homeschooled) 

I also talked to my SD about it today during direction, and he told me to relax, drive as often as possible, and ask for the intercession of St Christopher. 

So that's what we're planning to do.... 

Many thanks for all the prayers! 

i might add, calling on the intercession of the Souls in Purgatory...and then pray for them to be relieved of their present state and enter into the Kingdom of Heaven..

 

The Souls in Purgatory have ALWAYS proven to be most powerful intercessors in my experience ;)

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