Wednesday Spotlight: Kelly Jamieson

Since I’m sharing all my peculiar neuroses, and you all probably think I’m a sketchy basket case, let me now talk more about my fear of flying.

I’ve jut returned from a trip to California, involving two hour and three hour flights there and back. This time was actually one of my less nervous trips, so I guess that writing therapy is helping. But my husband still laughed at me when he reached for my hand and found my palm drenched with sweat. Especially if there was even the tiniest turbulence. I swear every time the plane hits a little bump I believe I’m about to die.

I’ve never tried anti-anxiety drugs, but I used to drink a lot before I flew, which helped quite a bit. Then we had kids, and I felt I had to stay sober so I could rescue them if something happened (like there’d be much chance of that if the plane crashes). I also tried to hide my fears from the children because I didn’t want them to be influenced by my craziness. Acting as if you’re not afraid actually helps a little, too. One time we had to split up and my husband sat with the kids and I sat a couple of rows back. I fiercely instructed him to “save the kids before you save yourself.” He looked at me with bewilderment and asked, “How am I supposed to do that?”

I know flying is the safest way to travel. I’ve heard all the statistics and the logical explanations. But fears are not rational. I’m just proud of myself for not letting my fear stop me from traveling.

Comments

  1. My mom is like you, Kelly, we practically have to pour her on the plane. Luckily I got the good flyer gene from my pop, and have never been anxious about flying.

  2. I should be afraid of flying. My first long distance trips all were terrible. In the first I was going from WI to Germany. I had a short flight from WI to MN. I got to the airport and my plane was frozen in the hanger. Finally they get the hanger unthawed and we leave. I miss my connecting flight in MN going to AL. I get to AL worried because I’m now later for this flight which is my military flight to Germany. The plane was delayed. Every hour they kept on saying one more hour. 7 hours later we leave. I arrive in Germany only to learn the reason we were delayed that long. There had been an electrical fire and they had to fix the plane. Thankfully I didn’t know that going over the Atlantic.

    2 yrs later I’m on my way home. Same route in reverse. Left Germany and stopped at NC for customs. Normally passengers wouldn’t even get off the plane. They run your baggage through customs while the plane is refueling. they couldn’t get the baggage doors open so we all had to get off and wait. Again I missed my connecting flight to MN. At MN I got off the plane with bags at one end of the airport (seperate purchases of tickets meant my bags had to be hand transfered) and the last plane going to WI for the night at the other end. I asked the woman at the gate what to do. She said catch the plane and file a lost baggage claim. I ran to my plane only to discover I needed to run back to the other end of the airport to pick up a ticket (this was 1986). I get to the ticket booth and the woman tells me she thinks my plane left. I tell her to give me the ticket and if I missed the plane I’ll be back since I’ll have the whole night open. She does. I run. Finally something went my way and they held the plane for me. It was a really small plane. I stunk after running around in airports for nearly 24 hours straight. I felt so sorry for my fellow 9 passengers.

    Now I figure i’ve used up my bad luck. I do still count rows to the exit and actually listen during the preflight info. Tha’s just smart though. I figure what you’re prepared for doesn’t happen.

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