As we mentioned earlier this morning, I'm taking a little "mini vaca" for the next few days. I'm visiting my brother in Naples, Fl (hey, free place to stay! Even if I DO have to sleep on an air mattress in the middle of his living room!) which is all well and good.

But, I have a tendancy to ruin my own vacations before they even happen.

Why?  Well, it's not entirely my fault.

I've shared with you before that I have suffered from depression and anxiety for most of my life.  My "social anxiety" has actually gotten worse as I've gotten older, but I manage. (Ironically, Val Townsend recently shared her struggles with it too...so if nothing else, know you're not alone)

So, yesterday, Eric Jordan and our boss, Bob, asked me WHEN I finally relax on vacation.  My answer was, "When it's over and I'm back home safe in my bed with DJ the Wonder Dog by my side."

So what do I worry about?

  • I booked the wrong flight
  • DJ missing me / being safe / thinking I've left her forever
  • missing flights / not finding the gate on time
  • not finding my brother when he picks me up at the airport
  • whether I packed everything despite 4 different lists I've checked and cross-checked
  • sitting next to a horrible person on the flight
  • arrival of the Antichrist, war, famine, plague, judgment, chaos, and silence or rebirth (7 signs of the Apocalypse)

And that's just BEFORE the flight. I can't even get into the myriad of things that go through my mind about the actual visit (undetected surprise deadly hurricane, massive fire, a psychotic Uber driver....).

I actually met a retired Marine on my flight from Atlanta to Naples. We chatted the entire flight, and yes, somehow we spoke about anxiety with travel.  He told me something I don't think I'll ever forget.

FEAR = False Expectations Appearing Real

I'm going to do my best to remember this when I start getting all wiggy about stupid things. I can't promise I won't still have these intrusive thoughts about insane things....but Michael (the Marine), I promise I'm gonna try.