You are sitting at the bar with your friends, you sip on a couple of beers, you feel nothing. You get up to leave, keys in hand, your lips feel a little numb and you wobble off the stool you were sitting on. Next thing you know, you're driving being blinded by the headlights of oncoming traffic. In this very second, your life could change forever.
Why do you feel it is okay to put not only your life in danger but others as well when you decide to pick up those keys and hit the road?
Many of my peers know the risks, warnings, and consequences, yet they still put themselves in these dangerous situations, at risk of losing everything. It's just one of those things. You never think it's going to happen to you. But guess what— it does.
For me, ever since my junior prom ceremony, I have had this image stuck in my mind. It was something important. Something I knew I would never forget.
As I sat there in the auditorium of Ocean Township High School, I watched this man present on the effects of drunk driving. He stood at the podium, professional, and soft-spoken. He began to inform the seniors of a time in life where drinking and driving affected him.
"Imagine opening your door at 7 P.M. after sending your wife to get a snack at the grocery store to two men in uniform. They informed me that my 8-month-old pregnant wife was dead due to a drunk driver."
As I sit here writing this, I still get chills thinking about it. To this day, I cannot erase the image of that man's face when he told that story of losing his wife and unborn child. Many people think a drink or two will not affect them, however, everyone is different and everyone's bodies react differently.
Studies show, on average, every 53 minutes, someone is killed in a drunk driving accident. DO NOT let this be you. Although you cannot control the entire world, you can make a small change that can lead to a big change.
Offer to DD. Offer to pick anyone up at any time if they need it. Offer no driving if you are drinking. And yes, I do know it can get challenging with people not wanting to listen and their schedules being erratic, but if you can save an extra life, you would create a huge impact.
So to my peers,
Next time you take a sip of alcohol, you are more than welcome to text or call me. I would rather come get you than be in the position that man was. His face was indescribable, and it lasted with me for a lifetime.