By Kaydene Green
A few minutes after driving off the DMV parking lot after officially passing my Florida driver’s license exam, I almost got into a car accident that would have been entirely my fault. What made it even worse was the fact that the car I was driving was not even mine. I almost failed myself and the person behind me, (not to mention the owner of the car), by switching lanes without taking the necessary steps to ensure that the lane I wanted to reposition myself into was clear for me to merge into. I made an impulsive decision out of fear of missing my fast approaching left turn because I was still heavily relying on a gps at the time to guide my trips every step of the way.
Photo by Artem Podrez
The irony of the ‘close call’ was that prior to doing the exam, I received an advice that still echoes loud in my mind after hearing it so many years ago. The advice was that, “switching lanes is one of, if not, the biggest cause of motor vehicle accidents so be careful to check your blind spot before you move over into another lane“.
I am almost certain that with all the new technological advancements in our world today, distracted driving may now have topped that list. But, that is still beside the point. I did not listen well or somehow had forgotten the advice and failed to take the proper “lane changing” precautions and found myself mindlessly merging into a lane I did not belong in.
Shaken up and embarrassed after receiving the disapproving deafening horn honk from the disgruntled driver on the left back side of my miscalculated decision, I nervously made an attempt to apologize for the almost catastrophic event by leaning out of the driver’s window with surrendered hands and an apologetic posture. Unfortunately for me, she was not having any of it and made it clear with rolled eyes and the lack of eye contact that my attempt of an apology was not welcomed. Ouch!
Photo by Liza Summer
At that point there was nothing else I could have done. I had almost ruined both of our morning. Obviously, in her mind it seemed, there was nothing I could have said that would have justified the “stupid” decision I made. So, like a dog with a crushed spirit walking off with it’s tail tucked away, I rolled my window up and humbly and carefully made my way back home.
Between the high of the celebration, the anxiety of missing my turn and my overly confident desire to change lanes, the complacency of not checking my blind spot almost became the cloud on a beautiful sunny day. All because I was moving into a lane I had no business in at the time.
Photo by Craig Adderley
Stay In Your Lane
While we are on the topic of changing lanes, I’d like to share the information that Florida law requires you to Move Over a lane — when you can safely do so — for stopped law enforcement, emergency, sanitation, utility service vehicles and tow trucks or wreckers.
“Sweep in front of your own door”German Proverb
Often times when we hear the words “stay in your lane“, it is usually in reference to the command of minding your own business. It can be quite the irritant (to me), when others meddle in matters that does not concern them. Maybe you’ve been the one to do the meddling. As for me, If I am not careful about my own approach on this topic, I get so caught up in minding my own business that I forget to ask the right questions for the sake of becoming enlightened.
Like the Florida law makes clear, there are times when moving over into a lane other than the one you are in, is unapologetically warranted. This is not something we put into perspective as it pertains to people getting into the details of our business. It feels more like a nuisance to be asked personal questions or to be put into a position to have to think about things you had no intentions of being concerned with. Context should be taken into consideration however.
What is the purpose and the intention of someone slithering their way out of their lane into mine? Is it to gain information so they can discuss it behind my back with others who does not, by the slightest, wish that I succeed? Or is it to find out enough to get to know me to offer support or a helping hand? Our own hard wired worldviews may determine the answers to these questions unless of course you have chosen the route of learning the facts about the people in question.
It Is Ok To Step Out of Your Lane
Photo by Toa Heftiba u015einca
Galatians 6:2 encourages us to share each others’ burdens and I do not see how we can accomplish this without stepping out of our own situation and circumstance, even for a short time, to selflessly focus on the concerns of others to uplift them in the way that is best suited for their specific need. This sounds like switching lanes to me, but only when the time is right and when the attempt is to benefit other drivers on the road. With self serving intentions, we may find ourselves in lanes we have no business in that proves to be very harmful for all involved.
When choosing to change lanes or to work our way into a situation that has absolutely nothing to do with us, it is a good idea to remember that our intrusion is only meaningful when the purpose is to uplift others or to expand our understanding of a situation in order to handle it better for the benefit of everyone involved. That is my personal conviction of a new perspective.
Your Lane, Your Unique Journey
Photo by nappy
Another way we can look at the topic of staying in our lanes, is to remember that we all have our own race to run with the unique talents we were gifted. I’ve learned one important element of running my own race is to maintain my gaze on my own actions within my assigned lane. To explain this better, I’ve linked a video below that has within it excellent encouragement on how to “stay in your lane”. I’ve found the advice quite useful and you may too.
Whether we are mindlessly wondering in someone else’s business for selfish reasons, being distracted by the journey of the people around us or seeking knowledge in understanding how to be the support system others need, staying in your lane should be considered within it’s appropriate context.
Were you ever told to stay in your lane? What does it mean to you? Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
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