No More Distractions …

On Friday afternoon, I passed a single-car wreck on the highway. It appeared that a car left the right side of the road and was down a small embankment, and it was completely engulfed in flames.

The accident JUST happened. Cars had just stopped and their occupants were running to offer assistance. Some people were gathered around what I assume was a crash victim, others looked like they were trying to get close to the wreckage to see if anyone else needed help.

And off to the side were two young women. They were both wearing colorful dresses and they both had dark hair. One was staring at the scene, hands covering her mouth. And the other was screaming. And jumping. And doubling over. And pointing.

It was the most heart-wrenching display of emotion I have ever witnessed. It was pure anguish and terror.

I know nothing except what I described above. I was traveling north and this happened in the southbound lanes. From the time I first saw the smoke to the time I passed the wreckage was maybe 30 seconds. Probably less than that. I only had eyes on these emotional women for maybe 5 seconds.

But I’ll never forget that display of fear and pain.

A couple moments later, I tossed my iPhone across the passenger seat and into the cup-holder on the passenger-side door. I couldn’t reach it. And I left it there for the rest of the drive.

I am guilty of distracted driving. VERY guilty. And I have always had the attitude of ‘I’m great at multitasking. I’ll be fine.’ But no more.

I do not want one person — family, friend, or stranger — to experience the sort of pain I saw on that woman’s face because I had to quickly read or respond to a text, or see how many likes my latest IG post got. I don’t want anyone I know to feel that way because I hurt myself, and I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I did that to another persons loved one.

It’s not worth it.

(I wish I could adequately describe how she looked, because then you would understand.)

And keep this in mind: Even if you ARE the absolute best at distracted driving … that means everyone else around you isn’t as good. Shouldn’t you be 100% focused on staying safe because of all those other fools?

I asked my girlfriend Callie to please not use her phone while driving, and she promised me she wouldn’t. I am asking you to do the same. Please do not use your phone while behind the wheel. I am even putting mine out of reach so I’m not even tempted to check it ‘just for a second.’ And spread the word. Get someone you love to promise you that they will do the same.

Thank you.