Family Day at the DMV


There we sat. All together. Daughter, son, husband, and me. Sitting among people who stare straight ahead, waiting for their number to be called so they can get their business done and go home. Sitting on hard, uncomfortable benches. Waiting. Waiting.

Daughter is nervous, waiting for the driver’s test. Son is too. They go over in their minds what they might be asked to do. Wondering if they will remember it all. Husband looking over all the paperwork making sure all is in order. Me? I try to encourage them. I know they are more than capable. I wish I could go with them.

I wish I could do it FOR them!

They are instructed where to go. They walk away from me and disappear into a room where other people wait to take their test. They sit. They wait. We watch as a young girl enters the room. She has tears in her eyes. She failed the test.

Parenting was easier when they were small and I could hold their hand and walk through the door with them!

Husband goes with them as the “adult licensed driver.” I wait for my number to be called. My license has expired. Blah!

Sitting. Waiting. Praying. I get a text from husband: “She finished parallel parking and did it perfectly!” I feel like jumping up and yelling, “She did it!!” I quietly celebrate for her! Soon she emerges from the door, face flushed, big smile. Relief! She passed! I give her a hug. I tell her I knew she could do it! She tells me everything that happened.

I get another text, “He’s starting now . . . come sit with me!” My license renewed, we make our way outside. We sit on a bench, daughter, husband, and me. We watch son drive away. I pray. We wait. Soon he comes driving into the parking lot. He and the instructor. He emerges from the car, and I strain to see his face.

Big smile! Relief! HE PASSED! Husband, daughter, and I congratulate him. Paperwork finished. We all climb into the car. Four licensed drivers! And we celebrate, and talk, and laugh about how they realize they didn’t need to be so nervous. It wasn’t as bad as they thought it was going to be.


We celebrate by getting soup, salad, and sandwiches at Panera. We drink pumpkin spice coffee at home. And we thank God we were able to be together for a day. Just us four. And we were able to encourage each other and celebrate another step into adulthood!

Family day at the DMV. Because when we are together, it doesn’t matter where we are. We can make it a family day!

And we did!

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Gina Smith (5 Posts)

Gina Smith has served alongside her husband at a small Christian college right outside of Washington, D.C. for almost 20 years, where she served as the Dean of Women. Gina previously dedicated her days to serving her family, but now that her children are both college students she fully enjoys her calling to mentor to women and young women in person and online with her blog Real Life Titus 2! Gina has been a mom for 23 years and she and Brian have been married for 25 years.


  1. Tricia Goyer says:

    I love this Gina! Family truly is about TOGETHERNESS. We can have fun wherever we are!

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