Tuning In… Out?

This is the story of a car from my past. Though I no longer drive the car daily, the lesson I learned lives on… (poetic, right?)

When I purchased my car, I was pleased to find that the stereo had been upgraded from the stock radio and that a CD player with an auxiliary option and removable faceplate had been installed. It’s one of my favorite features of the car.

A habit, however, formed soon after I bought the car: when I’m not in the car, neither is the faceplate. I take the faceplate inside in the evening and to the car with me in the morning. After months of owning the car, it’s become part of my morning ritual; grab the coat, keys, coffee, purse and radio faceplate before I leave the house.

One morning a few weeks ago I was running late and I missed a step in my morning routine. I grabbed my coat, keys, coffee and purse and ran off to the car. As soon as I turned on the car and realized what I had forgotten, I knew it was too late for me to run back inside; I was late enough already!

I was certain from the moment I put the car in drive and started toward the office that the lack of music during my the morning commute was going to throw off my entire day. But it didn’t.

As I drove the familiar route to work, I was sure I was going to be annoyed by the silence in the car. But I wasn’t.

Instead, I found myself noticing the beautiful morning sunshine. I rolled down my window and listened to the cars on the road next to me and felt the breeze on my face.

Cliché as this may seem, I was amazed by all the sounds and sights I was missing on a daily basis because I was so caught up in my routine. Beyond that, however, I also found on that unusual morning drive that I was more relaxed when I arrived at work because I had spent the 10-minute drive, not listening to an upbeat song or hearing the morning news, but instead relaxing, preparing and praying for the day ahead.

Don’t misunderstand, most of the time when I’m driving, there is some sort of music playing in the car. But after that peaceful morning commute, I find that I’m not all that upset when I “forget” my radio faceplate.

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