My daughter is trying to kill me. Not outright with a weapon or anything like that, she's much more subtle and devious. She's getting her driver's permit.
Do any other words in the English language strike such fear into the hearts of adults? Even boys aren't that scary. (Well, at least not yet. She can't date for six-and-a-half more months.) Am I really expected to turn this girl loose with a car? I've spent a large portion of my life taking care of her and keeping her out of danger. I spoon-fed this kid strained sweet potatoes, and read labels, and researched car seats, and changed the batteries in the smoke detectors. For years! Well, I didn't keep spoon feeding her the sweet potatoes, but the point is I devoted sixteen years of my life to keeping her alive. And now I'm supposed to say, "Here's the keys, try not to die?"
Am I alone in this?
And what happened to me? Somehow I went from a young woman and leaped in one giant hurdle to middle-aged woman. Ouch. What is it about having a child behind the wheel that makes you old? I mean other than the self inflicted claw marks down your cheeks from gripping your face too tight as you try to teach them to parallel park, and the bald patches from ripping out your hair by the roots during a close encounter with a semi in an intersection?
It's basic math. They teach it in school. Math makes you old. Someone sees your kid driving, and then out pops their fingers. “Let's see,” they say. “If she was at least twenty when she gave birth add six, carry the one." Walla! Old.
I don't feel old, well, not until ten p.m. or so, and I don't think I look that old. I don't have grey hair (yet), or that many wrinkles, but who can argue against the powers of addition? I'm now officially old.