There are so many ways to look at this mistake that I haven’t been sure how to tackle it on here.
I’ll start here: it truly was a mistake.
I will admit that I speed when I drive, knowingly, purposefully, in places where I think it doesn’t really matter to be going five miles per hour above the speed limit, in places where I feel like I’m more of a hindrance to traffic flow and more of a danger to myself and others if I obey the speed limit.
I do NOT knowingly or purposefully speed in school zones.
This school zone had signs posted; it had a flashing light. And I saw it, and I slowed down. And then I stopped at a traffic light, and the fact that I remained in a school zone went out of my head. I accelerated quickly, as I usually do when I get the green light, and was up to 36 mph in the normally 40 mph zone when the police officer read my speed, still inside the school zone.
I saw the lights flash on his patrol car and thought surely he isn’t coming for me, and still it did not dawn on me that he had cause, that I’d been speeding in the school zone.
I am lucky I got this ticket. Lucky that I got this reminder to be more present in my driving, to not go on automatic pilot when I get behind the wheel. The cost of the ticket or the optional online defensive driving course will be a small price to pay. It will be far cheaper than the physical trauma and emotional anguish my victims, my dog, my child, and I might have suffered had this driving error resulted in my running down an elementary school child crossing the street or some other such catastrophe.
So I repeat, I made a mistake. I got a speeding ticket. And I am lucky.