I wrote this post in one go while taxiing on the plane yesterday…
London is an “easy trip” for me: I’ve been there many times and it’s just a short flight away from where I live (Genova, Italy). Nevertheless, after my recent panic attacks every sort of trip started to look “bigger” than it actually is.
I think about when I flew to Japan on my own and slept like a baby. THAT was a big trip. This time, my heart is pounding for what I call a “beginner flight”! This is a test for me. I am planning a trip to Iceland on February and I can’t hide I am nervous, as well as excited. London represents the proof that I can still travel.
One day I’ll read these lines and smile at how silly I sound, but this is the actual situation so I’ll think about the funny side later.
I usually feel a huge excitement during take off. I even wrote a post about it in the past, where I explain how much I love that moment in a flight! But I can’t tell exactly what I’m feeling now.
When you suffer from anxiety, you tend to mistake every feeling with anxiety. I’m happy? I think it’s anxiety. I’m hungry? I think it’s anxiety. I ate too much? I think it’s anxiety. And even… butterflies in my stomach? I still think it’s anxiety.
So now I know I’m excited but I can’t tell if it’s normal (did I feel like this last time I flew, before the crisis?) or not. I will find out soon. If no panic attacks occur on this trip, then I’m fine!
The plane heads to its position for take off. It turns and for a few seconds I can see the runway ahead. I look at it all the way to the end. People around me have no idea what kind of a challenge this represents for me.
And then it speeds up and I find myself smiling, and I feel the aircraft detaching from the ground and everything disappears, the tears I feel stinging in my eyes are of happiness, and there’s nothing left but me and my life.
I see the shadow of the plane on the ground. I’m flying. On so many levels.
Nothing else matters!
The day in London was perfect. I felt so comfortable and happy. I believe travel has a therapeutic effect on anxiety. It happened to me before (when I went to Honduras in 2007 after more than a year of panic attacks and anxiety) and even this time it didn’t disappoint.
There’s no room for anxiety when you’re happy and surrounded by beauty. Because you know, above the clouds there’s always the sun. And I saw it this morning above London. :)
I am ready for Iceland!
Thanks to Traveldudes for giving me the opportunity to go to London on a short press trip, and conquer my fears at the same time!