And now the point to all of this back story.
I have developed a fairly serious phobia.
Not of driving as one would suspect. But of being a passenger. I thought up until last week it was when I was in the front seat of the car. You know right there with all the action. Front row.
Last week I was being driven by my eighty-five year old grandfather through Jacksonville, and was in the back seat and deducted the following,
Holy shit. I can’t be a passenger. AT ALL.
Up until I got married four years ago, no one recently had really driven me. I drive myself. Up until May I commuted 80 miles per day through a major city.
The one in control.
And that is no problem. I can eat a sandwich, change radio stations, and navigate morning traffic without a second thought. Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.
But when I am being driven I have to focus on something, ANYTHING else. And that is only a temporary fix. I almost have anxiety attacks every time I am a passenger in a vehicle for more than 10 minutes.
Because I HAVE TRIED. I will sit there, with my very competent husband at the helm and repeat the following in my head.
“He is an excellent driver. He has an excellent driving record. He is fully capable of getting us from point A to point B without incident. Stop being a nut job and just relax. It is fine. Wait, does he see that car in front of us has stopped? Does HE SEE IT?? I SEE IT. HE must have seen it. Should I scream, I want to scream. Wait, DOES he see it??? Aauuuuuuuuuuuughhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh faaaaaaaaaaaackkkkkkk WeAreGoingToDieeeeeeeeeeee.”
As he comes to a normal stop behind the person who also stopped.
I am now panting, sweating, and my nails are embedded in the handle of the passenger door.
I am not kidding. It is that bad.
I took a picture from the back seat of my grandfather driving and sent it to Hubs with the following, “I may very well have a heart attack. Tell the boys I love them. And that I died of irrationality and absurdity.”
On a road trip to North Carolina I had to take a Valium. Which I never take unless my anxiety is an out of control Monster Truck in the Stands. I just couldn’t calm down. It was pouring rain, winds were crazy and my husband doesn’t really slow down for rain and the combo was just too much. I tried to stare at my phone but every movement of the car had me looking up then feeling like I we were going to be in a horrific wreck at any moment. At any moment at every moment.
It must be because I have been in so many accidents where I am rear-ended. That is the only thing I can figure. But this has got to stop. It seems to be getting worse instead of getting better.
Any suggestions out there? Anyone else have anything like this??
Woman on Pause