I usually avoid long distance driving at night. I have a certain eye condition to blame for that. But then, one night post 12AM, my husband was feeling sleepy and since I was wide awake and fully alert, I decided to get behind the driving wheel.
For a while, I drove at my own slow pace watching out for speed breakers/ motorists without end lights/ blind curves/ traffic coming on the wrong side/dogs/cats/et all. It is painful to drive long distance on slow motion anticipating unknown dangers, every second of the drive. Just when I was thinking there should be a better way to get through this, a small car zoomed ahead of me. This car was driving at the exact speed I wish I was driving at. Wow! On a simple instinct, I decided to follow the car. I figured, since it was ahead of me it would have already encountered the obstacle before I did. All I had to do was follow it and I would be fine too.
This strategy worked beautifully, for a while. The car slowed down at a speed breaker. A little way in the back, I prepared for the speed breaker just by watching the tail lights of this car. It took a sharp turn, too close to a truck without back lights on. I was ready for the truck a few critical seconds in advance. I started to relax. I was obviously following an expert driver blessed with good driving instincts and definitely much better night vision than myself.
After a while, I lost this car at a junction. Maybe it had sped away faster than I could keep pace or maybe it took another turn that I wasn’t meant to take. For a while, I drove with a heavy heart. Slowly, I got accustomed to driving on my own, at my own slow speed. And then just like that, another car zoomed ahead at a speed that was just right for me to follow.
I mused at the ease and fun of a night drive, when we have a guiding light in front of us. And then, just like that, I started thinking of the people who have been Guiding Lights to me, in my life. They have appeared in my life out of nowhere, but they have been instrumental in me driving around blind corners at night. Some people have lead the way for a short time but a few have been there to stay for a long distance. I have merely followed some but some have taught me a lot about the journey itself, simply by driving ahead of me.
My life would not be the same without them.
It is uplifting to find a Guide and it is heartbreaking to lose one, if you have connected deeply over a long period of time. Once lost, there is no point in looking back and trying to find the Guide again in the darkness of the night. We just have to keep driving forward, albeit a little slow, albeit a little scared but we have to keep moving forward on our own journey.
As long as we are still driving, still moving on our own journey, who knows when the next guiding light might overtake us and give us an opportunity to follow it. As long as we are willing to learn, willing to trust, willing to remember our own destination, I am sure the next Guiding Light is somewhere right behind us, waiting to zoom up ahead of us.