Monday, November 1, 2010
Fear of Flying
I wish I could travel more. I mean really travel. There is an encaustic workshop planned for this summer that I really would love to attend. It has the best teachers lined up, some of my very good online buddies are attending, all of the incentive in the world to go. Except...it's in Oregon. And I'm in Indiana. So I'd have to fly. That means an airplane. I'm already having a panic attack just thinking about it.
I have flown before. It wasn't pretty. My first time was with my husband. I figured that would be okay. It was a short flight from Columbus to Madison, WI. No biggie. We didn't even have to change planes. He didn't think it was a good idea that I insisted on a window seat. But I didn't want the aisle; plus I couldn't help myself. I had to look out the window. So we're flying along, me with both hands glued to the armrests. He kept trying to talk to me but I just kept trying to remember to breathe. Then it got bumpy. The plane would jump, then fall.
That did it. I started to panic. I looked at him and he had this horrified look on his face. "Are you crying?" he asked. Well, yeah! I was terrified. Who knew you would be flopping around in the air like that? He kept saying it was fine. It was just turbulence. No, it was not fine! It was a nightmare. I just closed my eyes. The flight attendant came by. He assured her it was okay; that it was my first time flying. It was humiliating (for both of us). And this was a short flight. The only thing I could think of (besides falling out of the sky) was that we'd have to do this again on the trip home. I could not believe he had talked me into this.
So, fast forward to a few summers ago. He was going to London for a business trip. All my life, the one thing I've always wanted to do was visit London. He asked if I wanted to go because I would need to get a passport and make a lot of preparations beforehand. Well of course I wanted to go. But I knew I wasn't going to. No way was I going to be able to endure an international flight. Because that would incorporate my other fear: water! That would mean flying over water. Just give me my heart attack now and get it over with.
I think he was actually relieved when I told him no. So he went on and I stayed home beating myself up. He would call, describing all of the places I'd never see. At least I have the photos. But of course it's not the same. He is planning another trip back there in a few years. Maybe I'll figure out a way to get there yet. But I digress... This encaustic workshop would be such a great time and I would learn so much.
I am so hampered by my fears. Not just the flying but others, as well. And all of the rationalizing doesn't help. You know, when people say "Oh, it's the safest way to travel...blah, blah, blah." My friend and I were talking about this during my visit. She asked what, specifically, about flying scared me so much. I said it was the crashing and burning part. "So I guess I'm really afraid of dying," I said. Hmm... The conversation took a different turn there. That meant another bottle of wine and then we got sidetracked.
So, I'm getting advice from everyone: from different drugs to take to getting liquored up, and everything in between. I'm not sure how those would work out since I'd be travelling alone. But I'll sort it all out and see what I can come up with.
The art piece at the top is a combination of a few of my art papers that I merged together in Photoshop and then printed out onto silk. I LIKE! :) When I think about my fears, these colors came to mind, and this piece is what I came up with. I only wish it were this easy to get rid of them!