Saturday, July 05, 2008

Speeding Towards Responsibility

I got a speeding ticket today. I'd like to tell you the story of the ticket and then tell you why it is not my fault that I got this ticket.

I was driving up to Toledo to pick up my grandma so that I could bring her back to Cincinnati. We are headed to Georgia tomorrow. I was driving along, listening to a radio station that kept fading in and out. My bladder was starting to mutter about the coffee I had poured into it earlier. I was getting frustrated with the radio and was scanning through stations. I remembered that I had a cd that my most wonderfullest friend and her husband (Mindy and Andy) had given me for my birthday. Red. Kutlass. MMMMM..... HARD ROCK. CHRISTIAN HARD ROCK. Yeah, I know, you'd never guess me for a headbanger or screecher. Well. Ok, I am. So I put in the cd and turned it up LOUD. I looked down and noticed that I was going over 80mph. I immediately backed off, since my cruise was set at about 76.

But then, I noticed it. The white cruiser coming up in the left lane. I knew it. I just knew in my gut that it was coming for me. And it was. Yep. The very kind, cute, Highway Patrolman gave me a pretty little blue citation.

Now, let me tell you all the reasons why this speeding ticket was NOT my fault.
1. The radio station transmitter was not strong enough, thus causing the station to fade in and out, which made me frustrated.
2. Mindy made me a CD full of loud, fast paced music. She gave it to me, knowing that I love music and really get carried away with my music.
3. Aaron's mom made delicious coffee, which I had to drink, which caused my bladder to be unhappy, which distracted me.
4. The state of Ohio should have more flexible speed limits for rural areas.
5. Ford shouldn't make cars that can go more than 5 mph above the speed limit.

So you see, it was all of those things that caused me to get the speeding ticket. Not my fault at all. Totally no responsibility of mine.

Oh wait. Wait. I did have choices, didn't I?
1. I didn't have to listen to the radio. I didn't have to respond with frustration.
2.I could have chosen any other CD to listen to.
3.There were plenty of places to stop and make my bladder happy.
4. Speed limits are very clearly posted and I can read.
5. Ford doesn't make me drive above the speed limit.

I think we sometimes want to blame the world for the results of our choices. It's so much easier to say that the extenuating circumstances caused us to do this or that, you know? It is our nature to shift responsibility.

Life is made up of choices. I had that pointed out to me this weekend. I was feeling bad for someone's lot in life, hurting for them, wanting to make it all better. I was upset about a situation. And it was pointed out to me, that if I used logic and not emotion to look at this situation, that all of the heartache was a result of someone's choices. I couldn't fix the heartache because I couldn't make the choices for this person.

So I got a speeding ticket because I chose to put my food down on the accelerator a bit too hard. In the end, it was MY choice. And I must suffer the consequences. I'll pay my fine. I've got to make restitution for my choice.

I'm not looking to take the splinter out of anyone else's eye, not when I have such a large plank in my own. There are plenty of areas in my life that I don't want to take responsibility. I want to blame the situations, instead of taking responsibility. I'm just like everyone else. But I think if we can step back sometimes, and see that we do have choices--- whether they are choices that we like or not--- then we might find it a bit easier to take responsibility for our lives, rather than blaming things to someone else.

Over and out. Off of my soapbox.



Jon is texting you as we speak to aggravate you about this. You know he could never pass up a chance like that. lol

Nah, really, I do like the analogy you made to our own choices. Nice.

Tammy said...

So, I shouldn't blame the little old lady going 15 miles an hour before the school zone and making me crazy for getting my first speeding ticket? Darn. Wouldn't you know, I am super careful in that area now and drive the same speed ans Granny. :o) Little Life Lessons are the best.

tammysthoughtpattern said...

Sorry, I guess I shouldn't have commented. I just read this

If I upset you, I am so sorry.