Let me start by saying this is a post about dealing with crap. Your fears. Your anxiety. Your stress. The things that we normally stick on the back burner and not deal with - this whole bit is about dealing with it.
It is not a product review. Product push. Religious push. Or me being a Jehovah Witness via a blog.
I've eluded to my anxiety of flying before. I'm sure of it. My personal anxiety of this method of transport does not physically render me unable to do it - it just sends me into an emotional tailspin for a solid 24-hour period before the flying death trap lands.
Just recently the Hubs and I loaded up the crew and took a trip to the west coast via - you guessed it - a plane ride. I, being well aware of the fact that purchasing plane tickets meant I was going to have to actually get on an airplane, thought I would be more proactive this time.
I have taken Dramamine in the past. Why for? I have no idea. Planes don't make me motion sick, they make me feel like I'M TRAPPED IN A CAVERN OF DOOM at 35,000 feet in the air. So, Dramamine is not a big help.
I've taken doctor prescribed anxiety meds before. The suckers rendered me almost useless. For well beyond the designated flight time, might I add. Which meant - upon landing - no booze for you, young lady.
I needed something. Something that would help but not to the point of I'm Bernie in Weekend At Bernie's.
I had been reading about a product that was all natural that could help people cope with everyday anxiety. Safe for kids. Safe for adults. Safe for dogs even.
So, 24 hours pre time-to-go - I bought a bottle and kept it in my carry on with the instructions on repeat in my brain.
Now, let's be clear, the instructions explicitly say Children over the age of 3 may take up to three droppers full. Adults and children over the age of 12 may take up to four droppers full.
The rep whom I bought them from said she took three and they worked wonders.
So, 20 minutes before boarding I dutifully gulped three droppers full and waited for the magic. Or the calm. Or the... anything.
Why did I take three droppers full when the instructions CLEARLY stated I could take four? That a child could take three... and I thought that would help me??
I should have realized - if I'm large enough that I could easily be FOUR three-year-olds, taking the same dose as one three-year-old was not. going. to. cut. it.
The result - well, let's just say on the return flight I figured out I needed to take more AND... and what came next is also a result.
We board. We sit. We buckle. We take off.
Then, of course, because it's a requirement or something - we hit turbulence. On our way up, nose of the plane still pointed upward, bumpity-bump-bump we go and I'm certain the planes about to fall apart and I did not hear one damn thing about parachutes.
Therefore I start to pray. And when I look at the children on both sides of me, I tell them to pray also. Not because they're required to but because this is what we try to teach in my household, when you're scared - say a prayer (or 19.)
At this point I see my 15-year-old son focus forward and make the sign of the cross.
He does it quietly. And then goes into a silent prayer.
Now... let me stop here for a moment because this action - this little act of not just devotion but routine - it caught me so incredibly off guard.
You see, we're Catholic in my house. The sign of the cross is like the word "Aloha" to the Hawaiian culture. It's a beginning and an ending. It's normal for us. All of us. Even me.
...Except when I'm in public - I usually forego this. I just launch into whatever array of verbage I'm needing to take to God at that moment.
I try to do so quietly and not draw attention to myself.
Not because I want to hide my religion. Or what I'm doing. But mostly because I don't like people looking at me - for any reason.
But - seeing this 15-year old kid, openly starting his prayer in the way he'd always been taught to, without a single solitary regard for who may see it or question it, made me realize something; our kids teach us things too.
Also, I want to have the confidence of my 15-year-old son when I grow up.
Just so I don't leave you hanging here - the flight was great. Really and truly once we reached cruising altitude there was nary a bump and the landing was so smooth my husband did not even realize we were on the ground (although secretly I think he was drinking.) So, this story is not one of some epic aeronautic tale.
It's just me - being real - reminding all of us that as parents - our kids have shining moments on occasion. And sometimes, during these moments, we, as the grown-ups, learn something from those tiny turd head of ours.
Also, getting real with anxiety. And size. And if you take meds for your anxiety, take a real dosage for your size. Whether your the size of an eight-year-old or the size of two eight-year-olds.
Get it figured out, kids. Nobody wants to be the person that warning labels were created for.