When she may not do it

Abby is learning to drive. Which is great and huge. Except Bridget thinks she can drive, too. Recently Abby drove to work and afterwards this happened:

Bridget was moving her booster seat to the drivers seat.

Me: Bridget what are you doing?
Bridget: I can drive, just like Abby
Me: Bridget you cannot drive
Bridget: Yes, I can drive
Me: Um, no
Bridget: Mom I got this, I can drive. I know how
Me: Bridget you are not old or tall enough
Bridget: That’s your issueWhich is hysterical and cute. Yet also sad.

Hysterical because Abby’s response was, I dare you to sign her up for Driver’s Ed.

Sad because as much as I want Bridget to defy anyone who said she wouldn’t, I don’t know if she can this skill. There are so many questions:

  • Will she be able to see over the steering wheel and reach the pedals
  • Will she be able to set up the mirrors
  • Will she have the eye / hand coordination
  • Will she…

The list goes on and in this milestone I seriously doubt she will be able to achieve it. I want Bridget to do everything Abby can do. I wanted her to ride the big yellow bus, she did. I wanted her to be able to navigate a grocery store, she is learning. I want her to do dishes, she is getting there (but check your silverware before you use it). I wanted her in an integrated program, learning from peers. She is invited to their parties and a part of their village.

I am not the mom that puts limits on Bridget’s potential. There have been many examples of something Abby can do that I fear her sister will not. Most of them Bridget has, it has taken her longer and taken a lot more effort than Abby. Yet Bridget has done so much they said she would not do:

  • She jumps
  • She runs
  • She talks
  • She shops
  • She has friends
  • She rides the freaking big yellow bus

Is it important to me that Bridget drives? Two months ago I would have answered an emphatic “no”.

Today it kind of hurts.

Tomorrow Bridget will wake up and brighten my day. Her laughter, her essence, just her being Bridget will be enough.  It will be more than enough because she is the child who defies anyone to put a barrier on her expectations.

So today I won’t be the mom who says she will not. I will be the mom that says it doesn’t not matter if she learns to drive or if she does not.

I will envision the day she may put herself in the drivers seat and I grab the wheel before she plows into the guardrail.

Just like I did her sister.

Even if Bridget is 40 years old when she shocks the Drivers Ed teacher when she dances into the classroom.



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