It was late in the night, and among other two friends seated at the back of a mini bus conversing about life, we were heading towards home. The bus was overspending, but we were so engrossed in the topic, until another vehicle overtook us. Obviously in the nights the roads are lonely, so the speed was really felt. We giraffed in all directions trying to take a glimpse of what type of car just passed by.
This changed our topic to excessive accidents during the peak days of December. More accidents occur within this shortest period but we don’t realize it because they are enshrouded by the merry making. We were of the view that during such seasons, there are lots of paranormal activities. The ritualist and the occultists need human sacrifices to thank their objects of worship for the year and to ask for protection and prosperity for the ensuing year, we didn’t forget the witches in our hometown – villages too who never want anything good. I remember saying the least thing you could do in ordinary months and be okay would cost your life in December. Would you believe this?
So I got home and whilst on bed I was reflecting over all that happened that day, and upon analyzing the conversation we had about accidents on Christmas, I never believed I sounded so superstitious. And come to think of it, was I just being religious or superstitious? This kindled my interest to look for what then causes the much accidents during Christmas and New Year, and I found these;
The National Institute for Mental Health defines stress as the brain’s response to any demand, briefly. This means stress can’t always be harmful. It’s tendency to be harmful depends on the intensity, duration and treatment level.
There are various forms of stress; a form that results from a single or short term activity, for instance a fight between a lover or colleague. And the type that results from a recurring condition. For instance dealing with a long term sickness or a demanding job or breaking marriage or home. And this is the dreadful type, called chronic or toxic stress.
Even though all forms of stress causes physiological effects, the toxic stress goes further to affect the brain and the entire human body as a whole. It affects the brain and how it functions which is not normal.
Stress causes mental disorders like depression and anxiety, and these are not good for driving.
December is a merry making month, but the underlying truth is it’s the most stressful month. People made resolutions for this year last year. And looking at how eleven months has passed by and now on the last, and yet can’t account for how they have lived all this while, it makes them think too much and stress sets in. People wonder if they are entering into the next year with the sickness, the milestones and shackles stealing joy from their lives…the thought of not being able to meet the needs of parents, children or the family in general.
This is time the road becomes very busy with everyone going to somewhere, the queue in the traffic alone tolerates stress.
This is the time people crave for some basic, social and all forms of needs…those that wish their deceased or separated love ones they have missed dearly would be around to celebrate with, and knowing the year is over, behind the steering wheel, the mind is off the road. However, driving needs a total focus on the machine you’re sitting in and on the road. You can’t drive and expect to be safe with anxiety and depression, just to name a few of what stress can do.
Meeting Deadlines and Frustrations
December is the climaxing of the year, packed with all the good vibes; there is everyday a cool event to attend. We all want to be at everywhere and every time too. It is also the rush hour month. Some realize how long they had been dreaming, now the year is almost ended and yet there are lots of things undone. They have to rush through now.
People are on programs. With the normal months, one closes from work or ends an activity tired and goes home to rest. This is unlike December. From work one has to make haste to another program, ride on a long trip to the hometown during weekend and back on same weekend. Much pressure at work and everywhere as everyone and activity is demanding… And this becomes worst when some factors try to hinder one from executing his or her agendas – frustration.
Eventually, the urgency to meet the agendas and deadlines, coupled with frustration takes over the mind instead of focusing on the driving. Kwame then accidentally lands in the bush, and his village people are blamed for killing him whilst making a trip to visit his parents. Least they know he was tired and was still pushing with frustration.
Hyper Celebrations and Misconceptions About Enjoyment
Every season has its spirit. The Christmas songs on the favourite radio stations and the harmattan weather in Ghana is just okay to put you into the Christmas mood, unless you have a problem. This is the season some group of people have toiled for all the passed eleven months – saving to buy the wildest drink, attend the wildest night clubs and parties – I’m not against it though.
They misconceive enjoying the season to be doing all the wild stuff to hit the stupor state. Driven by the spirit of Christmas, to which they misconceive to be all about their way of enjoyment, with the substances that make them feel enjoyed, makes them hyper in everything they do at everywhere; everything like driving and everywhere like on the major roads. What do you expect of a driver who is hyper and in a state of stupor? That’s when they drive recklessly and waste lives of innocent ones in addition.
The underlying causes of the serious issues affecting humanity are undermined. We tackle the surface forever leaving the roots.
Accidents at this hour has more to do with mental health and effective cognitive functions than the perceived paranormal activities related to it. Have you had that experience where you cut your finger or had burn or any form of domestic accident because you forgot you were doing something as the mind is occupied with anxieties, nervous, stressed out…? Its the same experience on the road.
This is time awareness on road accidents should be promoted on the media but it doesn’t happen this way unless a public figure falls victim. Even it would be talked about after the festivities.
In our part of the world, the only time we go for counseling is when marrying or suffering from love-related issues. Mental health is very essential for all forms of activities, and driving is one of the activities needing full focus or accurate and maximum cognitive functioning. Mental disorders is on the rise now, but when talked about, people relate it to only the tattered fellow matching on the streets, misconceived. Compulsory seasonal counseling should be made for drivers both commercial and private ones if necessary upon periods of renewing licenses.
I strongly suggest that if you know you have a lot in your head, don’t think of driving. You need to be alive to face that problem that is stressing you, making you drink to stupor. The problem would be lying there unsolved for generations.
In some parts of the world, the police could detect one has taken drugs or alcohol and would drive the fellow home or make sure he or she is safe before driving. Unlike here, even when in the state of stupor just drive on as far as its your life, your car and you bought the fuel yourself. The police at this season should employ the rational measures to help make Christmas and New Year a safe one.
Merry Christmas And A Happy New Year To You. Cheers!!!