Life lessons from my dad
I recently went through the experience of my father passing away. It was and is a very tough experience. All the thoughts I had of the relationship between my dad and me over the years came flowing through my memories. Most of the memories were good ones to cherish and look back on fondly. I kept thinking of what my dad gave to me and it was nothing tangible. It was a lot of life lessons.
Although my dad liked to laugh and joke around a lot, my dad also took a lot of things seriously when needed. This included his family responsibilities and his driving. My dad never taught me to drive. He saved that to the experts and I appreciated that. It gave me an appreciation of the job of being a driver trainer. My dad taught me other things though.
He taught me that if I was going to drive his vehicle, I had to show his vehicle respect and respect to him as the vehicle owner. I also had to show respect to my passengers since they trusted me to get them to our destination safely. I also had to show respect to the other road users. He never showed me road rage or driving aggressively. He taught me how to remain calm while driving.
My dad was not much of a drinker but if he was drinking, he knew he had to wait long enough to be safe behind the wheel before driving or to find another way home. This was an important life lesson to me. It showed respect. Things have changed slightly since I was young with regards to knowing if you are safe and legal to drive after drinking. We now have single-use breathalyzers that we can all have in our possession to use after we’ve been drinking.
I showed my dad one of these and he was surprised they were that small and easy to use. He was pleased that I was helping spread the word that drinking and driving is never the way to go. We talked about it recently while we had lunch together, where I was having a beer with my meal. It would be a few hours since I would have to drive and I explained how these devices would let me know if I was legal and safe to drive.
He was also pleased that I was using these opportunities to provide life lessons to my own kids on this subject. Two of my sons have already used these devices and have appreciated them. They never take the risk of driving after being impaired by alcohol. They know there’s too much at risk. I guess I have already started to pass down some life lessons to my kids.
My dad asked me where anyone could get these breathalyzers and I brought up the good people at Not Your Child Corp. People who also want to provide life lessons to the general public and do a good job with it. These breathalyzers could become the new normal in our lives, provided we open our minds to them. I think my dad would if he was still around.
It doesn’t really matter where you are or what you’re doing, if you’re at an event with alcohol or just having dinner and drinks with family or friends, you’ll really want one. Once you appreciate the advantages of using them, perhaps you could include them with the life lessons you’re sharing with your family. Not Your Child Corp would be proud of you. And so would my dad.
Scott Marshall has spent over 30 years promoting road safety in many jurisdictions. He has been a road safety journalist since 2005. Scott was also an on-air judge on the Discovery Network’s Canada’s Worst Driver during their first 3 seasons on the air. Not YourChildCorp. is proud to have Scott @Safedriver as a frequent contributor, his insights are irreplaceable.