A few days ago my alarm woke me up at 5 in the morning. I went about my day like any other meaning the first thing I do every day is wake up and lay in bed for 10 minutes solely thinking about how tired I am. Once I bring myself back to reality, I get out of bed in enough time for myself to have at LEAST two and a half cups of coffee. I usually take this time in the morning to either get ready or look at different social media networks. Little did I know, but that morning I would find myself in tears over a shared video that I chose to click on while I was sitting at my kitchen table drinking my first cup of Joe. The video starts off with one simple question:
What are your reasons for using a phone while driving?
I urge everyone to watch this video before continuing:
As the people in the video told their reasoning’s, I could easily relate to all of their answers and put myself in their shoes. Boredom, changing a song, texting someone I am “on my way” or “running late.” It is almost as if using my phone while I am driving has become some sort of routine I do every time I get behind the wheel. I know that I am not the only person out there who uses their phone while they are driving. Even before I saw this video, almost every time I would get behind the wheel of my car I started to notice people looking down at their phones. Only down.
In the video, once everyone gives their answer for texting and driving, a young women named Jacie comes out and gives them her own personal story of what happened to her and her family while she was hit by an 18-wheeler who was swerving to get out of the way of a driver who was on his phone, not paying attention.
As she gave her emotional story, I found myself sitting there, in tears thinking about the many times I have been looking at Facebook, or opening a Snapchat while I was driving. As I finished that cup of coffee I made a challenge to myself to stop using my phone while I am behind the wheel of my car. WE have the power to really make a difference and actually do something about the deaths that happen EACH day due to distracted driving. Changing a song on our phone is not an excuse to take our eyes off the road. Make a playlist, only put songs on there that you enjoy and don't mind listening to. Challenge yourself and do not let a song, ruin your life or someone else's.
Over this next month I am going to put my phone down and start driving. Every day that I am successful with my own personal goal I am going to reward myself, even is it is something as simple as letting myself watch ONE more episode of "Narcos" before I go to bed.
I am going to take the next step and promise myself, and most importantly the other people on the road, that I am paying attention to them.