Left Rights

When I was a kid, many a family vacation was planned out by the now antiquated Rand McNally Road Atlas and the Hagstrom maps. They were the key to creating the most direct route from our house to any destination that did not include air travel. It still amazes me that to this day I could pour over these maps in the car and have my bearings complete with Longitude and Latitude or a spot on the map called B6. I could read a map but have absolutely no sense of direction if I was plopped on a road or in the middle of a street. Fascinating. Somehow, I was able to navigate from Anywhere U.S.A. to Everytown U.S.A. with my index finger and a pencil.

It is now 2023 and the world’s coordinates are run by satellites and GPS. If you’ve been following along with my home game, you’ll know that GPS and I are not friends. I don’t know if it is truly my having no sense of direction or if it is just my disdain for the robotic voices urging me to make a turn at the next light. 

Last night I received word that one of my classmates from back in the day was gravely ill. I’ve been following his progress on Instagram for years as I keep in touch with him and his husband through posts and comments. It’s strange how your old relationships blossom into a completely different model all because of social media. I find the whole concept crazy yet comforting. Yes, I digress. As I read of this friends’ state, I was getting updates from my high school reunion committee group. Just two days earlier we met to discuss reunion plans. Our conversation somehow drifted to some of our parents passing away at the ages we are now. The sobering thought of this sent me down a rabbit hole as I drove home. I’ve been living in the abyss for a few days now just thinking about how fragile life really is. 

My phone started buzzing with group texts from my gym family. One team member is retired but drives a school bus. He is often heard talking about being placed on different school routes which either involve a few special needs students or sixty elementary and secondary students. The routes he says are sorted into a series of “Lefts and Rights” on paper. There are no GPS routes for these buses. It is good to know that your school tax dollars are not being squandered. Major eye roll here. I think I just sprained my eyeball trying to convey the sarcasm…I thought about what this member said. He plans the lefts and rights so that he optimizes his time and can move efficiently throughout the route and deliver each student safely to either their schools or homes. I often joke with him that I’d be terrible for that job and the kids may not arrive home for dinner…if at all. The drop off and pick up topic though sent me deep into thought. 

Aren’t we all our own drivers picking up and dropping off people in our lives? Some passengers stay on our bus for a few stops. Some just for one – others for a lifetime of stops. Some will be with us until we reach our final destination. I took the thoughts further (overthinking and create Kiki for the win). There are people who board our bus or vehicle and even though they exit they have left you with a memory or two hundred that stay with you throughout your entire drive through life. For example, this friend I heard about last night. He was in my homeroom in middle and high school for six years. He and I nodded and had a connection each morning. I hugged him when he signed my yearbook. He exited my bus after graduation. It would be years before I even saw his name again, but I never forgot how nice he was to me all those years and the look we gave each other after the goodbye. I realized that no matter how long people are on your bus that they leave something behind. It isn’t something you can place in a lost and found but something that stays in your heart – sometimes deep in your soul. 

My thoughts never stop. Our internal GPS will tell us where to go…when to turn…when to stop. Sometimes we can back up and go the other way. More often than not though we just keep going. In my case, if the bus breaks down, you work through the challenge of what caused the halt and merge back into traffic. There are more people we need to meet and discover. You never know who will board your bus and when. I for one am ready to greet everyone with a smile and get to know them as we drive. Each trip we take is a piece of your journey towards our finish lines. It is your trip. Your road atlas. Your map. Who you allow on your bus will help you to determine where you are headed next whether you realize it or not. Wishing everyone a happy drive as we enter our next season of life. Enjoy the lessons you will gain from your passengers. Write your own set of lefts and rights. They will bring you to where you want to go.

Author: KikiFikar

Just a woman with big goals and dreams that will never die no matter where life takes me....

One thought on “Left Rights”

  1. This is a fantastic blog and yes we are all drivers of our own busses but we are passengers on others busses as well!!! I love this concept and how you presented this!!! We can never take for granted the time we have on the bust trip called life!!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: