If you haven’t read part 1 of this story, go read it here: Driving Fear Stops People From Living A Complete Life
The fear of driving only grew for Tony over time, and even thinking about getting behind the wheel of a vehicle would create knots in his stomach, and lump in his throat. He could feel his heart begin to beat faster as sweat formed on his face, and fear very quickly set in. Within a very short period of time, Tony began to experience anxiety and panic attacks before he even got behind the wheel of the vehicle.
Every time after that night that Tony got behind the wheel of a vehicle, he would instantly feel the fear set in. About a year after he had finally gotten his drivers license, which took him 7 tries to accomplish, he was driving through the center of town and went to make a left hand turn. As he did, he went up onto the side walk and nearly hit three pedestrians that were standing on the corner. “I could feel the panic and fear and anxiety in my stomach as I tried to drive. I could see the panic in those three guys eyes as I nearly took them out. I thought for sure I was going to hit all of them and that would be the end of their lives. I laid down my keys and haven’t driven since then, and you will never get me behind the wheel of another vehicle as long as I live” Tony used to tell people.
Every time he got behind the wheel, he very quickly felt his throat close up and his chest tighten making it extremely difficult to breath. He would begin to sweat all over and his hands would very quickly feel as though he had dipped them in a bucket of water. Before he even turned the vehicle on, he would begin to feel the fear and anxiety set in, and a lump would form in his throat. Many times it would get so bad that he would begin to feel dizzy and sick to the stomach.
He would often begin to panic so badly that he would have to get out of the vehicle in order to relax for a moment before trying to start the car up and begin driving. It was even worse when he was out on the road actually driving as the fear grew to the point of being completely unbearable. Images of Tony losing control, hurting other people or himself, screaming, and various other thoughts would begin to fill his head and he would lose complete control of his thoughts. He became convinced that his thoughts would become action and reality, and he soon stopped driving all together.
Eventually it became nearly impossible for Tony to do anything that involved driving. He would become so tense and afraid every time he got behind the wheel that it took everything he had just to turn the vehicle on and get to where he wanted to go without hitting everything he drove past. It wasn’t long before the anxiety and fear completely began to interfere with his social life, his ability to get back and forth to work, and eventually other areas of his life.
Tony married when he was 21, and soon found himself with a son 2 years later. His little boy was the center of his life, but as his son Mike grew up, his inability to drive began to wear on his marriage. Tony was unable to take Mike to school, sporting events, doctor appointments, and anything else that needed to be done. Naturally this all fell on Tony’s wife to take care of herself, and the stress of having to make sure she got to work, Tony got to work, and their son got to everything he needed to go to became to much.
Tony’s wife eventually left him and filed for a divorce when Mike was just 8 years old. She moved out of state, and left Mike with Tony. Without the ability to drive, Tony now needed to depend on anyone he could just to handle the most basic of tasks on a daily basis. He needed someone to give him a ride to work, to buy groceries, to take Mike where he needed to go. Before long, Mike had to drop out of all of the extra activities he was involved in because there was no way to get him there on time, all the time.
Tony began to grow more and more desperate with his situation. He knew that he couldn’t allow his fear of driving to completely control and take over his life. He had lost his wife because of it, and his son was now suffering because of him. It soon got to much to bear and he knew he had to do something about his problem.
He began to look for solutions to his problem because the only thing that bothered him more than driving, was when his family had to suffer because of it. He had enough when his wife left and he had to depend on others for help, but when he saw the look on his sons face when he told Mike that he could no longer play baseball, the knife had been driven deep enough into his heart to make him take action, and take action he did.
After some time, Tony came across a solution that solved his problem once and for all. He had been to doctors, therapists, psychologists, and various other people. He had tried the drugs, breathing, talking it all out, and anything else they could possibly give him to help. None of it worked, and he very quickly grew tired of the games and began looking else where for a solution to his problem. Before long he found exactly what he was looking for, and very quickly overcame his fear and started driving again without the typical anxiety, fear, and panic that he had experienced before.
The third part of the story will be online in two days!