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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Southern Girls Living Fearlessly - Day 30

Right Lane Must Turn Right.

--Or must it?

I turned 40 earlier this month. And I started thinking about what I have done with my life. And I realized that I've made a lot of right turns just because the sign said so; not necessarily because it was the direction I wanted to go.

I've found myself caught in that right turn lane a lot, doing what other people expected me to do, doing the "proper" thing, making other people happy by going with the flow. Not that other people always imposed right turns on me. I usually imposed them upon myself. I have always been a pleaser.

Not that it was always the wrong decision to go right. It brought me here, of course, and there are many, many things I like about my current parking space on my journey of right turns.

I guess what bothers me is that I've never fully considered all my options when I've found myself inadvertently stuck in the RIGHT TURN ONLY lane:

1) Do the predictable, comfortable thing and turn right.
2) Ease beyond the right turn, into the intersection, and try to unobtrusively sneak back into the left lane.
3) Put on my left blinker, turn the steering wheel in the direction I want to go, and wave my way into the left lane; even stop traffic in the right lane, if I have to, until someone lets me move over.

So what if horns honk. I've got choices! We've all got choices, and it doesn't mean that we're impolite if we take a moment to consider them. It doesn't mean we're unladylike if we choose not to turn right.

I'm 40 years old. I don't intend to travel the next 40+ years going around the world to the right. I want my course to meander, to zig left, to zag right, to make U-turns (even when the sign says I can't), to merge, to travel divided highways, and to take me places I'll never arrive at if I always make right turns.

TODAY'S ASSIGNMENT: On a yellow or white Post-it Note, write your own sign and post it on your dashboard or your steering wheel.

My sign for today says: CAUTION CURVES AHEAD

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