This month in carbon footprint

I got my driver’s licence ten days ago. (Licence is the Cdn spelling for the noun: you are licensed and get a licence. I only recently had this beaten into my thick noggin, so I’m practicing.)

It was a huge surprise. Last February, I tested, but my anxiety was so intense I had a panic attack and the tester gently suggested I practice more before retrying; this test, my main goal was to manage my anxiety. It wasn’t driving that was the problem: it was being *watched* like that.

Anyway, I did a bunch of things to help myself, including driving with my mom (thanks, Mom!), and on the morning of the test, writing a few pages from the perspective of a confident/professional driver. This pre-loading exercise I got from reading a book – “Blink“, I think – containing studies that showed people did better on tests if they wrote first from the perspective of a Professor. Implicit association has also shown people do worse on tests if they’re reminded of their gender or ethnicity and the stereotypes go against them: I have a feeling this is why as a nerdly young woman I chose to identify as one of the guys. Because otherwise, I had a shit-ton of bullshit between me and a good result.

Anyway, I didn’t think I’d passed because he didn’t take me out on the highway, but I didn’t really care because I’d been cool-headed. But I passed, and with flying colours, too: only I STILL didn’t believe him when he said so, because I’d talked myself out of believing it possible. So when I came in after the test and John signaled “How’d you do?”, I shrugged, because I was pretty sure some mistake had been made and he’d say, “Oh, well. No, you didn’t really pass.”


Since then, a couple of things. 1) We’ve had John’s step-mom’s car while she’s in Mexico. 2) I got a cold. 3) Tate got a cold. 4) It’s very cold.

So I’ve been driving. Driving lots. Picking up the kids in the car. Running out to pick up groceries or a winter coat. Dashing off an errand in the two hours before the kids are off school.

I’ve learned something: it was probably wise that I didn’t get my licence before this. WHOO BOY it’s easy to just rely on a vehicle! So much faster! So much more lazy. I’m sort of looking forward to the car going away again, or else this could get to be an addiction; I haven’t been feeling one hundred percent, so I forgive some of my laziness, but it’s still pretty intense.

But it’s fun, that’s for sure. Freeing, also.

Other things: I made a deal with myself last month to go see the doctor and bring up all the things I’d not bothered to. Turns out what I thought was maybe an ulcer or something is a cartilage inflammation on my ribcage. Turns out that it’s quite possible that springtime migraines are caused by pressure changes from stormy to clear. Turns out I have very low iron stores, which might be what’s made me think my exercise asthma has gotten out of control (although I’m getting lung function testing, to be sure.) In fact, what I’ve learned is that Dr. Google and I make for poor diagnosticians.

So I’m seeing a surgeon on December 16th to deal with m’ bosoms, which are definitely stressing m’ribs. Dunno if they’ll say yes or not, but if you could keep your fingers crossed for me, my tinfoil man triathlons would get a lot easier if I were of a reasonable chest size, and I wouldn’t have to go through the torn-muscle of three years ago again, and it sounds like other discomfort might ease. And I would like all that.

Also, fingers crossed on the low iron being my exercise breathiness. I’m really not into the idea of constant medication for asthma. I think my problems with iron actually are stemming from my problems digesting the wide world of soy oil and lecithin, so finding a non-lecithin bound iron supplement might be all I need.

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