The other day I failed in my third, yes THIRD, driving test and it made me wonder about the bravado of youth. I was so nervous, as I have been in every test so far, that I shook for the whole thing. As a result, although I didn’t fail monumentally like the last time, I still managed to royally fuck it up!
I’m 35 years old which means I could have done my test, passed, had a child and had that child pass their own driving test by now. I can’t help but think the reason, in part, to my persistent failure, is due to my age.
When I was younger nothing worried me. I auditioned for full time drama school at the age of 12 against a thousand other girls for one of two places and it didn’t faze me in the slightest. I remember a friend of mine saying ‘You might not get in Ruth’ and I replied ‘Well, I will! Of course I will’. I remember the conversation so vividly and I knew I’d get in. I had the bravado of my youth.
A few years later I went to audition for the Norfolk Youth Music Theatre which is a division of the national and covers the whole of the county; getting in is hard but I wasn’t worried. The morning of my audition I walked, nonchalantly, with my best pal Emily to the venue and I remember her saying ‘Are you nervous?’ I said, without even thinking ‘No, not really’ and when we arrived I saw a really hot guy and THAT is the thing which took up all of my attention. I KNEW I’d get in. I had no reservations. And I did. That bravado thing again.
When I was younger I was so self assured but over time I have lost some of my confidence.
When I was seventeen I thought I cold do anything, be anything, speak to anyone… By thirty five things have changed. Doubt has set in and that’s the problem for me I think. I no longer think I am invisible.
I am still confident in lots of ways. I don’t sit back and suffer fools gladly for instance. I always have the guts to stand up for myself, complain in a restaurant, argue my point… But for some things I just shrink and sitting next to a driving examiner seems to make me go completely to pot EVEN thought I CAN drive!
I can SO drive. Yet… Still I fail my driving test time and time again. I just can’t seem to relax or even just pretend that I am and it’s driving me nuts!
My instructors don’t understand it, they know I can drive. My husband doesn’t understand it, so much money has been spent. I DON’T UNDERSTAND IT! I can be so good at being brave but not when it comes to my driving test and I so wish I’d taken it when I had the bravado of youth on my side. I just know I would have passed first time because I’d have believed in myself back then.
I will keep going and one day, perhaps, I will just manage to wing it through my shakes but it’s really starting to annoy me now. That sick feeling on test day needs to do one pronto. If only you could buy bravado by the bottle…