I’m a dope.
My daughter had an impromptu orthodontist appointment. She was having some kind of mechanical issue that was causing discomfort. I wanted to get her looked at as soon as possible. This happened on a morning when I also had a doctor’s appointment scheduled for 4:15pm. I called the orthodontist very early hoping to schedule a before school appointment. No luck. They could see my daughter only at 3:30pm.
Perfect planning and timing would be needed to make all this happen; meet up with my daughter after school, drive to the orthodontist, have her mechanical issue repaired, drive her home and make it to my doctor’s appointment. While this seemed like a lot to do in forty-five minutes, I was grateful that I didn’t have to drive more than a few miles. It would be a challenge, but I could do this. I love challenges.
As we left the orthodontist’s office, my daughter was feeling better and there was still 15 minutes before my doctor’s appointment. I could make the mile and a half home, drop my daughter off and get to my doctor’s office, only a mile from my house. I was making good time, just a few blocks more to the house.
I approached an intersection. A two-lane street became three about a hundred yards from the light. The new left lane was for cars making a turn. I needed to make a left, but was stopped a few feet short of where the road opens up to include the third lane. An 18-wheel truck blocked my path. I was stuck. I immediately became consumed with getting to the left lane, even though the light was red. I needed that lane to stay on time. I needed it right then.
The truck driver could see my left blinker on, so he pulled up as much as he could. There was some daylight between the truck’s bumper and medium in the middle of the road, or at least that’s what I told myself. As the left lane light turned green, I was determined to make the light. My head started to spin. I convinced myself that there was enough space. I slowly moved up, passing the right front of my car past the 18-wheeler’s bumper. Then my slowly moving car came to a hard stop with a simultaneous screeching sound. I wedged my front passenger door into the back left fender of the truck.
My daughter and I were fine. As I backed my car up, I wished that I could rewind the previous 30 seconds. Not only did I know that I was dope, my daughter did, too.