Saturday, March 14, 2009

Anxiety

I think I stand to learn a lot from my kids.

I am a very anxious person. The older I get the more I worry about little things and the big things. I tend to be very controlling so being in any situation that I'm not in control of stresses me to no end.

When I was younger...or rather, before I came to terms with my own mortality I was fearless. I would have gone skydiving or bungee jumping. I would have travelled the world with only a backpack.

So in just a little over a weeks time I am headed to Las Vegas. I've been there before, the adventure of a lifetime. 5 days in a car with 4 other adults. And that was just one way. But we saw so much and as my dad said, the best part of the trip was just getting there.
Now I get anxious driving to Newfoundland.

I flew to New Brunswick by myself the summer I turned 12. I was not afraid. I had my Sony Walkman with my Madonna tape and some books and was more bothered by the frat boys sitting next to me.
When I flew to Newfoundland in 2001 I was terrified. This was before 9/11 so that wasn't what scared me, it was that I was in a very large and heavy piece of metal that would be thousands of feet in the air and I was not in control of it. And to make it harder, I had my baby, my reason for living with me. It didn't help that it was a turbulent flight.
So in 10 days I'm going to get on a plane again, this time without my children and I couldn't be more terrified. I almost feel like I tempt fate by doing something selfish like take a vacation without my children, with my husband, so far from home. One horrible accident and my kids are orphans.

And yet, I know we will be fine, they will be fine and I'm sure by the beginning April I'll be writing about how I long for the freedom and quiet and peaceful solitude I had on vacation.

Mary Jo went for her first sleep over last night. This is my clingy child. The one who cried through 2 years of kindergarten. She cried for the first two months of first grade. Just one short year ago she wouldn't go to Maddie's birthday party and now she's sleeping at Maddie's house. On Thursday night she started getting cold feet. She told me she was nervous that she would miss me and Sean too much. I offered to arrange for Maddie to sleep here instead and she said to me, "no, I'll sleep over there. If I don't try I won't know how much fun it is."

A good lesson for me. I can sit here and dream of going on vacation but unless I get on that plane I'm not going to know how much fun it will be.

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