When the hospital staff sends you home with your new baby, not one of them warns you, that in the future you will have a new part time job as a taxi driver. Whether you like it or not, transporting kids to designated locations will be a large part of your job as a mom.
Therefore, those days of cruising around alone in the car with the windows down and the music cranked up are pretty much old news. When you become a mom, the windows are rolled up so the baby in backseat doesn't get too much air, as well as to prevent the toddlers from chucking toys and sippy cups out on the road. The music is Toddler Tunes or Bible songs, or just plain off so that your kids don't pick up any inappropriate language or suggestive phrases. There's nothing worse than hearing your 3-year-old in the backseat singing, "my lovely lady lumps" along with Fergie.
Then there's the whole cool car thing that's long gone when you have little kids. Shoving a car seat or two, plus a family of five into the two-door red sports car ain't gonna happen. You might be able to pull it off with just one small child but one more, and it's off to find a minivan, SUV or sedan. It's unavoidable.
Plus, when you're a mom/taxi driver, that means are you rarely alone in the car, especially when you have little ones. For 12 years I've always seemed to have someone in the car with me and if there was some unusual instance where I was alone, I tried to enjoy it without looking too foolish, by blaring my favorite song and maybe even rolling the windows down if the weather was nice.
Last Sunday was one of those rare moments of alone time. I went by myself all the way to North Platte and back. I wondered if I should just not listen to music and enjoy the abnormal silence, taking in the beauty of the hills full of yucca plants. Or, should I turn on my favorite station or put in my favorite CD and turn it up as loud as I want?
I chose the latter. I cranked my favorite songs and sang right along with them. It's amazing how good I sound when the music is loud and no one is yapping in the back seat. I harmonized better than a barbershop quartet, I swear. When it was a jammin' song, I drummed on the steering wheel and bopped my head back 'n forth. I kept thinking how fun this was and how made me feel young and cool, even if just for an hour.
But as I was partying like a rock star ... alone, I passed by a car that had just spun out and hit the guard rail. Then it hit me that I'd been cruising along have a good ole time, and, yes, it was cold and a little rainy, but I never really thought about it being icy.
Then that just made me start thinking of all the things that could happen that I'd been completely oblivious too, such as deer jumping out or blowing a tire. My tires ARE getting pretty bad, ya know.
That would sure ruin a good song, wouldn't it -- smashing a deer or spinning a 360 on the ice. After that, I figured I'd better tone it down a bit, maybe start acting like a more responsible driver, instead of teenage pop star. I set the cruise a little bit slower, turned down the tunes and put both hands on the wheel at 10 and two.
It's just that I don't get these alone times very often and I was having SO much fun! I didn't even care what the other drivers thought when I passed them be-bopping in my truck, I was enjoying my day. However, I'm a mother of three driving a big ol' "mom" truck so I supposed I'd better act like one. Better safe than sorry, I guess. But it was fun while it lasted.