Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Despite my best intentions, I didn't ruin my 16-year-old's birthday

Yesterday, my firstborn turned 16-years-old. (How did that happen?!)

In Texas, this means you can finally apply for a driver's license.

Last summer, he took a driver's education course and a written test to receive his learner's permit. (Did I mention the 4 hours we spent at the DPS trying to get it? The DPS office in our smallish town is packed like that EVERY DAY!!)

Since receiving his learner's permit, he's been driving with me or his dad in the passenger seat ever since. (at first his little brother refused to ride in the car if his older brother was driving) 

It was stressful at first.
There were some near misses. (I stopped counting) 
With time and practice, he got better. 
He's a pretty good driver ... 

And then along comes his birthday, yesterday, when he was scheduled for the big driving test at the Texas DPS.***

***Side note - In North Texas, you have to schedule the driving test more than a month in advance in order to get the date you want. It's CRAZY. We called a month in advance and ended up having to schedule our appointment at a DPS on the other side of Dallas to make it on my son's birthday.  

The weekend before the test, he spent several hours practicing parallel parking in my grandmother's car, because it's smaller than my big ole boat-of-a-car.  (He took the test in her car also)

 The day before his test, I realized we needed a current VOE (Verification of Enrollment) from the high school. The one we had on file was from the summer and not valid anymore. That took some last minute calling and stressing.

And then the night before his test, I realized I didn't have the certificate of completion from his driver's training class.  and the driving school was only open specific hours. So, that induced more stress and calling and emailing and stalking the owner ...

Needless to say, we ended up making more than one trip to the DPS in Garland (almost two hours round trip) and a trip to the driving school as well, where we sat outside for a good thirty minutes in hopes they'd open early ...

(Waiting at the DPS, irritated with me for taking a photo)

You get the idea.
But, somehow, despite my intentions, we made it to the DPS with all our paperwork,
he was able to take the test 

(outside the DPS with his temporary license)

So, Texas, my firstborn is now on your roads.  

Please, please, please be gentle with him.

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