By Bryan Hess –
When I was learning to drive, I had to choose which one of my parents I wanted to teach me. I knew my mom would be a nervous wreck behind the wheel, and that every five minutes I would hear some form of “I can’t believe my little boy is growing up.” My dad on the other hand, is a very calm person and I knew that he would be quiet and let me learn things on my own as I went. By the time I got my permit, it was an easy decision as to who would be my driving instructor – my dad.
As soon as I got my permit, my dad took me to a back road to practice. My dad gave me the breakdown of what I needed to do, and how to do it. I was driving stick, so I needed a little bit more practice time than I would had I decided to take the easy way out and drive automatic. Once I thought I had mastered the art of driving, I make the decision to drive home. Throughout this time my dad remained quiet, giving me some advice now and then.
Driving was going smoothly until I encountered my first hill. I stalled the car, and I was completely embarrassed. I panicked and had no idea what to do. It was the first time my dad had gotten upset. I lost my cool and we got into a little argument. As the typical teenager, I blamed him for not properly preparing me. After I got the car going and drove for a little bit, he smiled and said “I bet you’ll never stall again.”
My dad was right. He knew that by making a fool out of myself that I would learn to never make that particular mistake again. Throughout my six months of driving, I had to learn the hard way that parents are almost always right. My dad has been driving for many more years than I have, and there would be times where I would try to go against his teachings, but I ended up being wrong every time.
And this doesn’t just relate to driving. If my dad ever gives me advice about anything anymore I listen to him without contest, most of the time. I’ll still have my disputes with him, just as any kid does with his parents. But throughout learning to drive, I learned that not only does my dad know a lot about driving, he knows a lot about everything. Parents always tell their kids that “they’ve been through it before” and that’s why we should listen to them. And just as every other kid, I ignored that and tried to tell them they don’t know anything.
Once again, I was wrong.