Written by Amy, one of the original moms without a blog
I can’t believe I really did it.
I really, really really did it …
I took Oprah’s No Phone Zone Pledge today. I actually went to her website and typed in my email address, city and state and officially took this pledge:
I pledge to make my car a No Phone Zone. Beginning right now, I will do my part to help put an end to distracted driving by not texting or using my phone while I’m driving. I will ask other drivers I know to do the same. I pledge to make a difference.
Yep, you got it. I’m giving up my phone while I drive. Turning it OFF while I drive.
In a way it feels liberating.
In a way it feels damn scary.
This is not going to be easy for me. My car was THE place to make my phone calls during the day. No way was I going to call my friends or colleagues from home and dig into my home time. I was all about which calls I can make and cross off my list while I was driving my car.
I saw the faces of those who had lost loved ones to others who were distracted because of their phones. I don’t want to be on either side of that story.
Oh yeah I fully admit that I was a distracted driver. I’d missed exits because I was engrossed in conversation or done a little swerving because my eyes weren’t on the road. By behaving like this I felt like I was teaching my kids that this behavior is OK. That it was OK to risk their lives because I needed to see who was calling me, or chat with a friend to catch up. Not gonna happen – no more.
It really struck me when Oprah’s team showed a shot out the front window of a car which showed pedestrians, a stop sign, a dog, bikers etc. and how many of these items we don’t see while talking on the phone because our brain can only handle so much information. While on the phone, many of these items simply disappear from our radar screen. We just don’t see them because we can’t see them, because our brain is being used up by our conversation.
The fatality statistics for talking on your phone and driving are the same as they are for drunk driving – 4 times higher than if you weren’t talking or you were sober. The statistics jump to 8 times higher if you are texting while driving.
So, I’m done. Call me at home if you want to chat.
Hi … my name is Amy … I was a distracted driver and now have 14 days clean, sober and distraction free.
**After I got on my high horse up there, I got knocked right off as I used my phone twice in the car today. I’ll spare you the circumstances. One call was necessary, one was not. I guess you can say I fell off the wagon. Ok, so now I’m 1 day clean, sober and distraction free. Starting over and taking it one day at a time.