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I Hate Winter Driving!!!!!

I Hate Winter Driving!!!!!

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It started a few weeks ago. That tight feeling in my chest. Sweaty hands. Negative talking myself. The dread. The worry. No, nothing major is going on. It happens to me in the late fall every year. This is all because of the thoughts of Winter Driving. Yup, I totally capitalized it. To me it is an entity. The horrible thing that makes me hate winter so much. The thing that makes me go utterly insane!

I can stand the cold, the bundling up to go outside. Enjoy how pretty the snow makes everything look, the kids playing and having fun, making snow angels, skating….aww, it all seems so nice. But then I want to go somewhere and the roads, oh those snow/slush/ice covered roads, they make me want to curl up and hibernate. Which to some, that is basically what it seems like I do – I hibernate from about the end of December till March, or when the snow starts to melt away.

I have good reason to hate Winter Driving so much. It is probably the only reason that my friends don’t commit me every winter when it all starts up again. My Mom died in a car accident due to a snow storm. It will be 16 years ago tomorrow morning. She was driving in to work in Kanata from Calabogie, when what police figured, she lost visibility due to a freak snow storm, and drove off the road landing on the cars roof in the river beside it. I was 14. I didn’t have my drivers license at that point, but it didn’t deter me from getting it or driving by the exact spot more times than I can count since that fatal day. (You can read a little more about it all in my post Driving Naked that I wrote in September.) I got my license as soon as I turned 16, and I had no problems driving, no matter the season. When I was 21 I even ditched my car due to icy roads, and it shook me up a little bit, but I was still ok, and got back in the drivers seat.

It wasn’t until I was off work on maternity leave with my daughter that this fear really took its hold. I was now a Mother. I couldn’t imagine leaving my children how our Mom unfortunately left us. I became afraid that if I went out I wouldn’t be able to reach my daughter if we got in an accident. That if we did, no one would find us. I would still go out, but hated driving when it was snowing. I remember one time going to Ottawa and it was fine when we drove there, then it was majorly snowing on the way home. I remember feeling like I couldn’t breathe and almost crying cause I just wanted to pull over and not move. After that, I basically make sure that I am not in a situation where I have to drive in weather like that again. And more often than not, it means I just really don’t go anywhere most of the winter.

The roads need to be clear, like I can see pavement clear. I live in the country, and that is often rare around here. I watch and check, and check and watch the weather forecast days ahead when I know something is planned. And I only make plans with the warning ‘…as long as the weather is good.” I like someone else to drive whenever possible if I do go out.

I hate it. I really hate it. I hate that Winter Driving basically paralyzes me. I hate that it was hardly even the beginning of November when I first started worrying about it. Making plans for an event in February, and my first thought is “what if the weather is bad?”. Winter Driving runs my life in the winter, and I feel helpless. I basically equate driving on a snowy day to getting in an accident, and that with death. So I just avoid it all together.

It is not something I am proud of, and every year I think to myself, this winter will be different. This winter you won’t let Winter Driving rule your life. But each year it almost tends to get worse. It isn’t anything anyone can do, it is all me. It is in my head, in my confidence of myself (or lack of), and in my heart. I know what Winter Driving can do, and I don’t want it doing it to me or my family again. So I do what I know to do, hibernate, become a hermit and not leave my house till the spring!

So please tell me I am not alone in my hate of Winter Driving!? Tell me that I am not a loony to basically hibernate because of it! Are you a fan of winter driving, or what gets your through it at least!?

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Comments (31)

  1. Trina Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    *hugs* I don't like winter driving either. :( I always just drive my own speed and forget about everyone else on the road. If they don't like it, its not my problem. It's all about baby steps... just drive when you feel ready. And if you don't want to go anywhere, I'll just start bringing you some Starbucks deliveries ;) lol
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      I am alllll for the Starbucks deliveries! ;) Seriously though, thanks Treenie xo
  2. Bonita Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    i remember the day your mom was in the accident... my heart broke for you and your family.. i too hate winter driving...even as a passenger... *hugs*
  3. Jane Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    Crystal I am so sorry for your loss! I began teaching in Calabogie a few years after your Moms accident and every time I got to "that stretch" of the road I felt sick. I have no reason like yours to hate winter driving but I'm right there with you! Not only do I hate driving, I especially hate being a passenger during the winter and I hate the thought of my loved ones being on the road in bad weather! Maybe we should move to California? ;-)
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      I am all for moving to a sunnier locale!!! ;) Thanks Jane. :)
  4. NatteringNic Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I am so sorry for the loss of your Mom. I identify with the fear that comes with winter driving once you become a Mom. Even bigger than the fear of me dying is the fear of killing our kids. I was driving from Carlsbad Springs to our home in Barrhaven in 2009 and hit a major storm. My son, who was 3 at the time, was strapped in his carseat. All I could think of was skidding off the road and killing us both. The whole drive all I could think about was kissing the garage floor. When we got home, the relief was exhilarating. (And no, I didn't kiss the floor...but I did give it a pat!) Thank you for sharing this intimate post!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thank you for your comment. I think once we become parents some of our fears become more prominent for sure. Glad to hear you made it home safely on that trip, and that you didn't kiss the grage floor....ick! haha ;)
  5. Erin Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    *hugs* I remember that day like it was yesterday... I didn't have fear of winter driving prior to becoming a mom but I certainly did realize that fear after having Willow. Willow was born in November and I remember wanting to go to your baby shower in Arnprior for Mase and it was really snowy. Before Willow, I would have made that trek but as I pulled onto the 417 and my tires were pulled slightly by the snow, I froze and the tears came and I took the next exit off the highway and went back home. I haven't driven in bad weather since then. I can only imagine that it's a million times beyond that for you because you lost someone you loved due to it. I may not have understood your fear 100% before having Willow but I do know now. I love you!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Erin. You and your parents will always be a big part of my memories from that day (not meaning that in a bad way of course). That was a crazy storm the day of Mason's shower and I wouldn't have been there either if it weren't for Les. I really didn't expect anyone to make it. Thanks for always being there, love you too! xo
  6. Kate Periard Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I can't even begin to imagine the extent of your fear or your loss. I HATE winter driving too as I was in a pretty bad accident due to black ice. I was driving into work, putting along at my comfortable pace (like Trina said, I go MY pace)., then suddenly I was spinning and ended up on my roof right beside a small river/creek. Panic set in, no one knew I was there (it wa 6am on a Sunday) as there had been a car driving towards me and they isn't even stop. Long story short, I felt around around for my cell, found it and called 911. They rescued me but I had to be dragged out. Since then, I am terrified of snow/ice conditions and one thing that helps me is my patient husband. He takes me out first snowfall an we practice donuts, emergency brakin etc. we do this a number of times through the season to help my confidence. Best of luck to you this year! You are NOT alone
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Kate for sharing your story, that is scary. I think someone should provide a "Winter Road Course Driving School". Somewhere to go out of control in a safe environment. I think my biggest fear isn't even other drivers, it is just in my own abilities to hand it you know!? Things can happen in a blink of an eye as you know, so scary! Alas, where my fears come from!
  7. Sue McLeod Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I too remember that day Crystal and think of her accident I think every time I drive up to Calabogie! I don't like winter driving either and as someone else mentioned dislike it more when a loved one is on the road in bad weather. Everyone just has to drive as safe as they can. Hugs!!!
  8. Brenda A Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    My heart aches for your loss. No number of years passing will ever make you forget your mother. Winter driving has its challenges for sure. I like to be prepared with a shovel in the back as well as blankets and food. Dressing in proper clothes for "just in case" is good too.
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Brenda for your comments. All good things to have in your vehicle 'just in case'!
  9. Breanne Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I agree with you! I HATE winter driving...absolutely hate it!!! I get "somewhat" the same tension and anxiety. I hate looking at the weather channel and see the forecast ahead with snow...I don't want to go anywhere in that weather. Hated it being pregnant, and hate it when the kids are with me! Only had one accident due to freezing rain but the nerves are still there. I don't trust anyone on the roads because weather sometimes just takes over the control. Love looking at the snow...hate driving in it!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Totally agree with you! I think the snow is pretty, as long as I am not driving in it!
  10. Erin Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I agree with you! I hate winter driving as well. I will be thinking of you and your family tomorrow. hugs Erin H
  11. Teri Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    Can't believe it has been that long. I think all of Calabogie mourned for you and your family. I haven't had anything so tragic happen, but I feel the same way about driving in the snow. Maybe I should just park the truck and use the ski doo this winter!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Teri :) I think I might snow shoe everywhere....I'll be a size 2 by spring ;) lol
  12. boppa Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I enjoy winter, I like the snow, but I sure hate driving in it especially to go to work. You're not alone hating to drive in snow. Fresh crisp snow isn't so bad, it's the damn slushy, slippery stuff that's bad. We all do it, but when ever I can, I will wait out the bad storms. Remember the other night when we drove up to Calabogie,,,do you recall when we saw that wee mouse,, it was scurrying across the road without any fear of being hurt,,,think about exactly where we saw it,,yes, that's where it was. She was showing us to travel the roads, not to fear, but to enjoy life and find happiness. Love Dad
    • jennifer Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Your comment brought tears to my eyes!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Dad, love you, xo
  13. jennifer Thursday - 06 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I too remember that day. Everytime I drove down that hiway to your house I can still remember the spot where the accident happened. Now here is the thing once fear controls your life it is time to control it. I believe from the bottom of my heart you have PTSD post tramatic stress disorder and it is treatable with therapy and medication. Talk to your doctor and get a hold of this. You will be glad you did! Take care!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Jennifer, you are probably right. I have gotten help on my loss, but not on the fear that came from it. Something to definitly look into. Thanks! *hugs*
  14. Lynda Friday - 07 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    *HUGS <> I totally understand. I didn't get my drivers license until I was 28...that was the first go at it in the new graduating license crap. I know how to drive and drive well BUT I never do well in tests and I get terrified at the thought of not passing. So I have been renewing since...awful ain't it!.... But yes, I am the same way....terrified of driving in winter....when I was 29...I had met a man and we spent a great afternoon and dinner...and evening and beyond....just talking about everything...he was ok....not perfect but I am nice and so I ended up staying t'il 3am....well...a huge snowstorm hit during that night but I did not want to spend the night...I left at 3am....I lived 30 min away from there at the time... I knew my father was up at 4am and wanted to beat that... :( ... halfway home...I could not see anything at all... total white out... couldn't see where the road began or ended...I pulled over at least 8 times....encountered over a dozen cars in the ditches. (was in the country then too)... next hing you know...I found myself in the watery car (my parents car) was nose first straight up...I was so terrified. Luckily it was near a house and a man came out to check. I was crying, seeing my life flash in front of my eyes...I remember closing them and seeing a really tall blond man...but couldn't see his face...for some reason it snapped me out of it and this old man was there with my door open checking to see if I was hurt... he wasn't the blond man? I knew nobody that looked like that man i saw when I closed my eyes. anyhow he had a tractor and pulled the car out... not sure how this happened but there was no damage to the front end of the car...except a teeny little dent. I went tail up because the ditch was so deep but I was not going fast. Since then, I have been terrified of driving in winter especially...I am too scared of something happening that would take me away from my girls....they need me and I need them....I know we take chances every day even in the summer but's still hard .....but one good thing did come out of it. I lived. AND a year later, I did come to meet that blond man I saw when I had closed my eyes........... He's my hubby now :) I feel for you Crystal. It's not fair or ok that your momma was taken. If you ever need an ear....I have two of em' ;) take care neighbor and hugs those precious kids of yours. Your mom does live in their hearts. xoxo Funny how faith works sometimes.
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks Lynda for sharing your story, so scary. Things can happen in the blink of an eye, as you know too. Gives me chills hearing you tell of the tall blonde man, now being your hubs! The world works in a funny way. I think living out where we do too, with the roads always so crappy in the winter doesn't help. I need to move to Florida, you can come visit! ;) Seriously though, thanks xo
  15. Katarina Friday - 07 / 12 / 2012 Reply
    I agree with you! I avoid winter driving as much as possible! My daughter and I slid on the highway almost 2yrs ago (Feb2011) and spun out of control and hit an oncoming car.We both almost lost our lives! I refused to drive until the snow was gone.But I still had issues driving and than winter came and i froze up. This year will see what happens!
    • Crystal Sunday - 09 / 12 / 2012 Reply
      Thanks for sharing your story Katarina, so scary how quickly something can happen. I can't imagine what I would be like if something ever did happen to me with one of my kids with me. I would likely just park the car till spring! I hope you are able to get out this winter, I hope I am too ;) *hugs*

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