Read a quote by Anthony Douglas Williams this morning that goes, “Spending time with children is more important than spending money on children.” While we are busy making a living to provide for our little ones, they are also quietly growing up. We have missed the most crucial years of our children; some have said these are the most ‘fun’ and fulfilling years.
These are the years where the most changes occurred. I have always said, “Children (the word which I having been using to refer to kids in the age range from baby to toddler and before they start their formal education) grow up very fast, and before we know it, they are all grown up already. These are the years when they want to stick to us wherever we go and don’t talk about private time for ourselves because even in the toilet, they will insist on keeping us company as if we cannot handle our own pee and poo; talking about who’s in charge in the family. These are also the greatest years to some parents! Were these also your greatest years?
Reading that quote by Anthony Douglas Williams this morning also reminded me of something I read from Jen Hatmaker about 1-2 months ago, which I thought makes a lot of sense. I couldn’t have said it better than Jen Hatmaker and so I’ll leave you with her words below:
“you will never have this day with your children again. tomorrow, they’ll be a little older than they were today. this day is a gift. breathe and notice. smell and touch them; study their faces and little feet and pay attention. Relish the charms of the Present. enjoy today, mama. it will be over before you know it.“
And you have guessed it, the title of this post came from the words of Jen Hatmaker. Three simple words and yet it summed up everything that I wanted to say. Do visit Jen Hatmaker at her website; Jen is in a great project which I strongly believe in and which I have put thoughts into for a long time. In fact, it has also been my one of my dreams to do the things that she is doing. Do head over and give her some supports.
Texting while driving or driving while texting, whichever you call it, is something which I absolutely hate to see people doing. As if calling without a hands-free while driving is not bad enough, some people just have to take it to the next level by texting while driving. I recently took a photo of a guy making a call, without a hands-free and driving at the same time. I was questioning myself, “Should I submit the shot to the relevant authority to take action against the guy?” In the end I decided not to.
And hey, if you were guessing if I was on the wheel while taking the photo, sorry to disappoint you, my brother was the one on the wheel. At the point when I took the photo, I was piping hot with fury and I told myself, “You are busted, for making call without a hands-free while driving!” I simply cannot tolerate such act of selfishness and irresponsibility. However, I decided not to report him to the authority as everyone deserves a second chance. I naively want to believe that it was his first time doing that. And I believe he saw me taking the photo; we were moving side by side. Let this be a gentle reminder for this round. I certainly hope that I would not live to regret that decision to let him off.
To the video above, I applauded Utah’s decision to get tough with texting drivers as drivers can get up to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine when they kill someone. There should be continuous effort by all parties involved, the relevant authorities, the drivers, driving schools etc, to make the road a safer place for all users. And most importantly for drivers, including myself, we should take the safety of ourselves and other road users seriously. I couldn’t have stressed it more that we must practice responsible driving at all time.
Just a moment of selfish thought plus irresponsibility, and we could live a life in deep regret. This is probably so for Reggie Shaw. He caused an accident in September 2006 which killed two men, both scientists and fathers. He was driving — texting while driving.
As I put forth this message of responsible driving to you, I am also holding myself accountable for the words. Let us all be responsible drivers and if you are not one yet or not planning to be one, you can still act as a role to gently remind. Together we can make our road a safer place for everyone.
Quoting from National Safety Council: Driver inattention is a leading cause of traffic crashes, responsible for about 80 percent of all collisions, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Cell phones are the #1 driver distraction, contributing to hundreds of thousands of crashes and thousands of deaths each year. This affects real people, real lives. Watch and hear the stories of the families featured
The festive season is fast approaching and there will be numerous parties where you’ll be having a great deal of fun. When there are parties, there are always alcoholic drink and many reasons for one to drink more. Before you take another shot, think again, “Am I going to drive later?” If you are, most probably you want to be more discipline. If you are not, drink all you want and make sure you have someone to see you home safely.
During this time, you’ll see a lot of commercials, banners and posters to remind individual to drink responsibly. I believe that most people are responsible … at least all my friends drink responsibly. When they are drunk, they always make sure that someone else who is sober will be at the wheel. Probably next time, if you know that your friends are drunk or have been drinking a lot, you may also want to exercise a little social responsibility to stop him/her from driving.
Drunk driving is an offence in most countries around the world. Anyone who is convicted of injuring or killing someone while under the influence of alcohol can be heavily fined, in addition to being given a lengthy prison sentence. In Singapore, repeated offence of drunk driving can cause you to be fined up to $30,000 SGD and three years’ imprisonment. For an offender causing death or serious injuries can also be caned up to 6 strokes.
In a report from CNN, a man in LA was charged with three counts of murder when he ran a red light and struck a car, killing a Major League Baseball pitcher and two others while under the influence of alcohol. Just for that split seconds he had caused lost and miseries to three families.
According to the Office for National Statistics of UK, “There were 8,724 alcohol-related deaths in 2007, lower than 2006, but more than double the 4,144 recorded in 1991. The alcohol-related death rate was 13.3 per 100,000 population in 2007, compared with 6.9 per 100,000 population in 1991.”
In the US, in 2006, an estimated 17,602 people died in alcohol-related traffic crashes—an average of one every 30 minutes. These deaths constitute 41 percent of the 42,642 total traffic fatalities (from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)
In Singapore, there was a significant rise in drink-driving arrests recording a 7% rise from 3,733 cases in 2006, to 4,009 cases in 2007. From a speech by Dr. Teo Ho Pin, dated 13 December 2006; he cited an accident which happened earlier in March that year. Two colleagues were on their way home together on a motorcycle and they crashed into the centre divider along Bukit Timah Expressway and their bodies were found lying along the road. It was found later that both men had a high concentration of alcohol in their blood. In that tragedy, two families lost not only their sole breadwinners but also their husbands and fathers. Indeed as what he mentioned, “The penalties of drink-driving are very high – with the ultimate penalty being death.”
Often time, you may think that you are still sober enough to drive after drinking but there are too many cases where drunk drivers caused death of their loved ones and innocent parties.
Prevention is always better than cure. If you are going out on a group, there can be a designated driver to send the rest home. And in the case when even the designated driver had a few drinks, there is always public transport or a cab instead. Never leave things to chance. Please do not ruin your night of fun and enjoyment and be sentenced to a lifetime of guilt and regret.
Before you watch the video below, I have to warn you first. This video is pretty graphic and can be upsetting to watch. And yet, it brings through a powerful message. You may even want to watch this video alone first before you watch it together with your kids.
Some months back, a cousin was giving me a ride to the train station and while she was driving, a call came in. Naturally, she picked up her cellphone with one hand while keeping her other hand on the wheel. Yes, she was breaking a traffic offense. I asked her to end the call and not to use the cellphone while she was driving … especially without an ear piece. Her reply was, “you are really getting old.” Yes, I am getting old. I hope I am growing up too.
Now if you think talking on the cellphone without an ear piece is bad enough, people seem to get worse; they are driving while they are texting now. Sad to say, technology is advancing forward and yet we seem to be moving backward.
Are you one of those who uses the cellphone without an ear piece, while you are driving? If you are, probably right now you will be saying, “I can manage the car steering well with one hand and use the cellphone with the other hand.”
Before an accident happened, every driver thought he/she can handle the car with one hand. And some might say, “If I knew, I wouldn’t have use the cellphone without an ear piece, while I was driving.” In a report by CBS News.com, a man who was involved in a collision, because he was texting, killed a 63-year-old grandfather.
“There’s no words to say how sorry I am,” He laments. ” … I think about this car accident every single day of my life. I think everybody thinks it can’t happen to them,” He says, “because I thought the same thing. But obviously, it can.”
From a report in Cnet.com, “A recently released study (PDF) by the VirginiaTech Transportation Institute found that truck drivers who were texting were 23 times more at risk of a ‘crash or near crash event’ than non-distracted driving.”
Further from the study, “Sending a text message took a driver’s eyes off the road for 4.6 seconds over a 6-second interval, which equates to driving the length of a football field at 55 mph without looking at the road.”
So the next time when you are thinking of driving while texting, think again, “is it absolutely necessary for you to send the text? Most probably it will not kill you if you do not send the text message. But 4.6 seconds over a 6-seconds interval definitely increase the chance of killing yourself or other.
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