Vindication (Trust Your Instincts)

The last two times I had major gut feelings about leaving the house, I ignored them and ended up getting slammed into by neglectful/drunk drivers.

This time, I listened to my instincts and stayed home. Sure, a lot of it had to do with anxiety this time, but that doesn’t change the fact that all I’ve heard of today have been slick roads, accidents, stalled vehicles, and backed-up traffic.

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Not that I felt that I needed support for my decision to cancel my appointment this morning out of fear, but it certainly seems like my fears were justified today. Which subsequently lets me feel a little less affected and a little more responsible.

What Keeps Me Awake Now

Sunday, my dad invited us over for homemade pizza. “Aw yiss,” I answered with much enthusiasm. It’d been ages since he’d made pizza. I got the details from my brother and set my phone down.
Suddenly, I thought about what he’d said. “Pizza at dad’s.” “At dad’s.” Oh my God, I’d have to drive to dad’s. I started to panic. Okay, well, I could just take this back way and weave through the neighborhood so I avoid the street where I was hit. Then I could just park and walk to his place. But which way should I take? I don’t even want to take Center. I’ll take the interstate to I. No. I’ll take Center, but I’ll turn off on 132nd or something; maybe I can find the neighborhood that way. Then I’ll park and walk.
Wait. Maybe Conor can just pick me up. Then he can drive me. No. That’s stupid. Why don’t I just drive to his place and then he can drive me.
No sooner had I had that thought, Conor texted me: “Just drive over here and I’ll drive us to dad’s!”
Tears of relief hit me as I texted him back that I was literally just thinking the same thing. Panic attack averted.

I closed my eyes as he turned onto 120th Street. I know Mary was trying to talk to me, but I heard nothing. I didn’t open my eyes until we stopped in dad’s driveway.

Tonight, it started snowing. As soon as I saw a tweet about it, I jumped up and rushed to the deck. I was overjoyed – I love snow. It’s beautiful and calming and quieting and ’tis the season. I stood out on the deck for a moment and let it land in my hair. It was bliss.
As soon as I had sat back down and wrapped up in a blanket, I realized, with horror, that I would have to drive in it come morning for my orthopod appointment.
Now. I have never been fearful of driving in the snow. Or rain. Or wind. Or whatever inclement weather we get in Nebraska. (Okay, not hail). The only reason I’ve ever complained about driving in it is because it seems like everyone else in Omaha forgot how to operate a motored vehicle at the most inopportune moment. Just slow the fuck down and be aware of some things and it’s just like driving any other day: don’t be an asshole.
However, I now have to drive in weather with people I already don’t trust.

I want to call and change my appointment. Can it wait until another day? Not the first day of snow. I’ve been rear-ended on dry pavement. I’ve been hit head-on on dry pavement. Now there’s snow. People can’t have remembered their snow tires already; it’s so early. People aren’t ready for this; they’ve forgotten how to drive in it. Please don’t make me go. I need to go. I know I need to go. I’m still in pain and I need to go. Can’t it just wait until another day?
What if I can’t do it? I couldn’t even get out of bed to write this post – I started thinking about what I have to do in a few hours and I became crippled. What if I can’t do it? I can’t even sleep tonight, worrying about it. I have to do it another day. That’s all there is to it. I can’t. I just can’t.

Jesus. This isn’t me. I’m not like this. I wasn’t like this. The only thing worse than the anxiety is the anger.

I’ll have to drive in the snow eventually, I know. I can’t let this fear take over my life. But what was once a source of childish delight for me is now just another trigger. Just another thing that keeps me awake now.

I’m a Bear

I just realized, with great glee, that I’ve essentially been hibernating for the past six months. If only I’d been feeding off of my body’s fat stores instead of continuously (and overly) replenishing them.

It’s getting to be about that time where I regret being a slug, but then, there’s really no point in that. It’s all I’ve wanted to do since getting my first job ten years ago.

I do have quite the motivation to lose about eight pounds this month, however: ComiCon in Sydney, Australia. I’ll be cosplaying a Midwesterner.

What I’m really excited about, though, is seeing my Aussie twins. It’s funny – I think it was even before this con came up, I was thinking about saying goodbye to the both of them at Paddington Station and just wishing the tube train was empty so I could cry afterward with minimal-to-no stares. Interesting how quickly and naturally we became friends – both in a country that was not our own, both there for different reasons, but both there for essentially the same duration. No coincidence that we met on my first night at the same ‘event.’

Actually, that’s what I’d like to tell Mr Cumberbatch, if ever the opportunity arises: Thank you for allowing complete strangers and mostly complete amateurs to be involved in a project that meant so much to you. If you hadn’t, I never would have met Jen, which means I never would have met Janine, which means I never would have met Geny or Shannon or any of the other gals. My London trip as a whole would have been a totally different experience and not one I’d care to think about, to be honest.

*shudder* Ugh. Yeah. Wow, I never even dared to go there until just now. What would it have been like had I not done Little Favour that first night. Or maybe I did, but wasn’t in the wrong right area, causing Jen to ask me, “are you here for Little Favour?” There’s just so much I never would have done or wouldn’t have gotten to do. I didn’t plan on knowing anyone over there, but as per, my plan is not the one in play.

So, I am ready to begin the waking process. Something Jen said, while we were discussing my potential trip across the Pacific, really stuck with me: something like, ‘I think it’ll cheer you up more than you know.’ Until she said that, I didn’t think I needed cheering up. I didn’t really think I was down. I knew I was apprehensive about air travel, I was discouraged about not finding a job, I found a great house and couldn’t buy it because I don’t have a job, I’m sick of my neighbors, blah blah blah blah. But, when she said that to me, it all seemed to click.

Traveling to Oz will help me get over my fear of being turned away at the border, unless I’m turned away at the border, it’ll get me out of Nebraska for a bit, which means it’ll get my mind out of Nebraska for a bit, I’ll get to see Jen and Janine, we’ll get to do some Sherlock stuff, I’ll see the beach, and hello, I’ll see a country I’ve never seen but one I’ve always wanted to visit.

She’s right. It will cheer me up more than I know. It’ll cheer me up even though I didn’t know I needed cheering up. I’ve been in my cozy, little cave for six months and it’s time for some fresh air.

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