"Hey Nash, I'm going to the store. Do you want to come?" I asked him as I walked past him while he was shooting hoops and opened the car door to buckle Knox into his seat.
That's when he said the three words I've come to dread.
"Can I drive?"
It's a special time in a parents' life, those months when their kid is gearing up to take their driver's test and are scrounging for as much practice time as possible. And by special I mean 'slightly hellish.'
Nothing bonds a parent with anxiety issues to their teenaged child more than being trapped inside a metal box with wheels, as your child hurtles you both closer to insanity or death all while trying to remember the rules of the road.
I become less of a parent and more of a screechy adult, clinging to the dash board, the seat, the roof, to anything, all while trying to keep from hyperventilating and bursting into tears.
I pulled Knox's straps tight and sighed heavily.
"Just get in the car kid."
"Your foot must be a little heavy today. You're speeding."
"That's a yield sign!"
"Oncoming traffic! Watch out for the oncoming traffic!!"
"Traffic laws aren't suggestions meant to be ignored!"
"Watch for that dog! Don't run over him! The dog! THAT DOG!!"
"A rolling stop isn't a full stop!"
"You can't stop in the middle of a cross walk! You're supposed to stop before it!!"
"You're taking the corner too fast!!"
"That yellow metal thing is commonly referred to as a fire hydrant. You aren't supposed to park in front of it."
"Um, angle parking means park at an angle. You're taking up two stalls."
The car lurched to a stop just outside the grocery store. I leaned my head back against my seat, closed my eyes and took a deep breath before looking over at my son.
I love my children, I love my children, I repeat over and over in my head.
"It's not helpful with all the back seat driving."
"I'm just calling it like I see it Mom. You should have let me drive."
Ya. Teaching your children how to drive is the BEST thing ever. From now on, I'm just strapping him to the roof until he gets his own car.