First of all, I hope everyone had a spectacular Christmas. I did. I really enjoyed watching Jman open all his presents. It was a very happy day in our house. I got so many good shots of him opening his gifts (if I may say so myself!) I had a little bit of a cold on Christmas, but I felt good overall. But yesterday and today, I have felt like poo. My originally planned post just wasn't funny. So I ditched it and decided to write something else instead because my brain is focused on it right now. And since I am on a pretty hefty dose of decongestants, I'm surprised my brain is functioning at all. . .
I am starting into BFF withdrawals. My BFF, Yvette, lives in Texas. And of course, I live in Virginia. We only get to see each other a couple of times a year. Yvette was here in October. I went to see her innnnnnnn July? I think it was July. It's early for withdrawals, but let's be clear here. Two times a year is not really enough for BFF's, especially for girl BFF's. And that means that in order to see each other, we have to. . .we have to. . .oh dear me. I can't even say it.
Oh, it makes my stomach drop just looking at that word. Have I ever told you I have an intense fear of flying? Only made worse by what happened on 9/11? I have never really been thrilled with flying. I usually have a death grip on the handrests until the flight attendants come around with the drink cart. You know. Because it is my responsibility to hold the plane up by gripping the handrests. I used to grip Jamey's hand, but that stopped actually after the very first flight we ever took together because I hurt his hand. But at least I get both armrests now. And don't forget, I need them. To hold the plane up.
So then the flight attendants come around and I always order the same thing. If it's an early morning flight, I get tomato juice. If it's an afternoon or evening flight, I get ginger ale. Some of you are probably wondering why I don't order a mixed drink. Well, in the past, I have always maintained that, if something happened, I wanted to be in full control of my faculties. Sitting here though, why wouldn't I want to be passed out if something happened? I might have to ponder on that for a while.
I also have a flight "ritual" that I have to go through. I always pull out the little card and look at all the information on it. Over and over again. I count the number of rows to the nearest exits in front of and in back of me. Multiple times. Kind of in an OCD kind of way. Bordering on unhealthy. And of course, I totally listen to the flight attendants going over all the safety procedures. And I get irritated by those around me who don't listen. Don't they know they may impede my route to safety by not listening? I'll crush their ipod listening a*% to get to safety. Make no mistake about that one. I listened. I get to get out to safety.
Once I got on a flight and there were none of the little safety cards in either of the seats in my row. A flight attendant just happened to be passing by and I flagged her down. "Excuse me, I need a safety card." She smiled and went and got me one. Then she asked, "Are you going to the flight attendant school?" I know the look on my face was one of pure horror. Like I would want to do that every DAY? If I'd have been drinking a drink, I'd have spewed it everywhere. I looked back at her and said, "Are you crazy? No, I need to review all the safety procedures so I know what to do in an emergency!" She looked back at me and slowly nodded her head. Then she said in a voice that let me know she thought I was the crazy one, and said, "So sorry. My mistake. There is a group of people going to flight attendant school on this flight. Have a good flight." She kind of backed away slowly, like I might pounce on her and tear her eyes out if she moved any faster. But, she did leave me to look over all the safety procedures in peace.
Once I got on a flight and I remember being particularly nervous. So nervous that I felt the need to peek into the cockpit. And I've done that a lot, but this time, as I peeked in to check out the pilots to see if they looked competent (you know, cos I can tell at a glance, right?), I was shocked to see that they were just sitting there, and looking back at me and smiling. Jamey, who was standing with me made some quip about my nerves to the pilots. And the line wasn't moving and so I had to look at them and smile. And then one of them said, "There's nothing to be nervous about. Here, come closer and have a look." And so I thought to myself, I could maybe make sure they haven't been drinking if I go in closer. And I can see if there are any drugs or anything laying around. And I went in the cockpit. And they started explaining stuff, and Jamey then moved forward so I was by myself with these two when they thought they'd do something funny. They turned some switch on and the plane said, "Dive, Dive, Dive." And they knew they'd made a mistake, because I started grabbing hold of stuff while we were diving - even though we were sitting on the tarmac and the plane was still boarding. I must have looked terrified.
So they apologized and asked me my name, and I told them. One of them said, "Don't worry, we'll get you home safely." I thought to myself, you'd better. But I thanked them for showing me the plane and I made my way to my seat. I'm surprised they didn't give me a little set of wings. I sat down, and after a bit we started taxiing out towards the runway. Then the most embarrassing thing happened. The pilot came on just before the safety procedures started and said something about welcoming us aboard and blah blah blah and then said, "And we'd like to extend a special welcome to our friend, Carolyn. She's a little nervous and so we've promised her an extra smooth flight." I could have died. When we landed, the landing was bumpy. And they actually apologized to me when I got to the front. Again. Totally embarrassed.
I told you my responsibility is to grip the armrests to hold the plane up till the drink cart comes around. I figure if the drink cart is coming around, then everything must be OK. So I grip the armrests until they get to me. And I'm usually about mid-way back. So by the time the flight attendants get to me, I can no longer feel my hands. And I ask for my drink and let go of the armrests and then take the drink with both hands. They are shaking uncontrollably as I try to get my drink to my mouth. I end up sloshing half my drink out of the glass, and the flight attendants think I have some sort of muscle disease. I think next time I fly, I'm gonna take one of Josh's water bottles with the straw and ask them to put my drink in that. That way I won't have tomato juice or ginger ale all over my clothes.
I have been on a few flights that the drink cart didn't come around. Um. Those were not fun flights. The worst was on our way back from Chicago to Richmond. Jamey and I had been up for a conference for Jamey's work. O'Hare airport was closed after we landed in Chicago because of wind shear. Jamey, who has flown lots, said afterwards he was worried about our landing. You could feel the plane trying to stay straight. I was so glad to land. On the way back we had a pretty bumpy flight. So bumpy that the drink cart didn't make it out. And I was almost hysterical. The guys sitting next to us kept looking at me as tears were streaming down my face. They asked Jamey if I was gonna be ok. Jamey shrugged and said, "I'm really not sure." At least he was honest. By the time the flight attendants could get up and do anything, the flight was almost over. But the male flight attendant took one look at me with tears and snot all running down my face, and he went into the bathroom and pulled out all the tissues they had. He brought them to me in one big wad and all I could do was squeak out "thank you" and put the whole gigantic wad of tissues up to mop up my face.
I know. It's sad and pathetic. But I've recently discovered Xanax.
We called my doctor (who shall remain nameless) and he suggested first trying alcohol. So we filled up two big containers of mimosas for my next flight. However, by the time we took off, the alcohol buzz had worn off. So strike that as an option. We called back as I was due to go see Yvette in a few more weeks. He agreed it was time to try the Xanax. And it worked. I still felt in control of my faculties, and I was much more relaxed. Now I just freak out in the airport till it's time to take my pill. So I text my BFF and my sister back and forth and talk about all the suspicious looking people in the airport. And thank goodness that army guy is on my flight and I hope he is sitting next to me. Maybe he will let me hold his hand. But then again, I'd want him to have use of that hand if we had a terrorist on our flight. So I'll just hold the armrest. This goes on an on till I take my pill. Then about fifteen minutes after taking it, I feel myself relax. So much better!
In fact, this last flight, I took two. Maybe was a bit much. Because when I got back from the trip, I looked on my camera. I had taken about a million "cloud" pictures. I don't remember taking those pictures at all. But really, the more I think about it, that's not so bad, right? Here. Want to see a couple? Here you go:
I seriously should add every single picture I took. You just wouldn't believe it. But I won't bore you with them. Because it's like making people look at slide collections. On the projector and everything.
So I do like the Xanax option. Just sayin'. It makes my flight more tolerable. I have enough for both flights, and then another couple that I can take if we have a delay somewhere. I throw the remaining pills out when I get back. But I probably should keep them. I seriously might need to start taking one to make my plane reservations too. That's not good, is it?
I apologize that I couldn't produce my extra funny post. My brain is just not working right with all this cold stuffed up into it. Although, this decongestant I took a little while ago is a little bit like Xanax. Not bad. Good grief, I hope this post makes sense. :o) Someone please tell me to take this post down immediately if the drugs made it make no sense. . . Have a great day! Wheeeeeeeee!