When anxiety attacks

I realize that my previous post sounds totally ridiculous now that you’re reading this one, because I obviously haven’t left yet. So just a side note: the previous post was a sample post I was commissioned to write. I didn’t know it was actually going on the internet, so I made it all up! Surprise! But seriously, I’m just letting you all know – I don’t actually have a time machine, although it probably would have come in handy for that time when the washer turned all of my clothes a light, rosy pink (nice on flowers, not on me).

In other news, I’m going to Spain! On….Tuesday. I still don’t think it’s hit me, to be quite honest. This week before my departure seems just like last summer – cleaning, sleeping in until noon and watching “Julie & Julia” with my parents, AKA “living the life.”

But this summer, I’ve also been packing. It has kind of helped me realize the enormity of what I’m about to embark upon. I’ll be in a totally different country, speaking a totally different language, for six weeks. Which is a really long time for a 19-year-old like me. So yeah, I’m a little nervous.

I suppose the fact that I have travel anxiety really doesn’t help. It seems all of my friends really enjoy traveling and visiting new places. Me? I’m honestly quite content staying in one place. I get really antsy and uncomfortable if I’m in unfamiliar surroundings without every single one of my possessions.

Example of this travel anxiety: Last night, instead of dreaming about eating tapas on a hot summer night in Spain like a normal student leaving to study abroad would…I had a nightmare. Yes, a nightmare that consisted of me, bawling my eyes out at an airport because I got to the gate and remembered I left my passport at home. Dreams are your subconscious trying to talk to you, right? So…I’m pretty much clinically insane.

Still, I’ve never talked to anyone who, when speaking about studying abroad, said anything other than, “OH MY GOD. IT WAS THE BEST EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE. YOU HAVE TO GO. YOU JUST HAVE TO.”

So I guess I have an obligation here. Financially, it’s been filled. Physically, not yet. We’ll see how the flight treats me. Note: I was going to calculate how long of a flight it was, but factoring in time zone changes is simply too much for my summer brain to handle. Lo siento.

My anxiety, however, was slightly assuaged when I found out about my host family. I’ll be living with two journalists! This is really exciting to me, as it combines my two majors – Journalism and Spanish – how neat! I really hope “take your daughter to work day” exists in Spain. Er, “take your [host] daughter to work day.” Either way, it would just be the bees’ knees if I could tour their workplaces.

Anyway, the next time you hear from me I’ll be on a different continent. ¡Hasta luego! (see you later)!

1 thought on “When anxiety attacks”

  1. The following is an excerpt from the book “The Prophet” by Kahlil Gibran. I thought it apropos to your travel anxiety.

    The prophet asked the people…
    “what have you in these houses? And what is it you guard with fastened doors?
    Have you peace, the quiet urge that reveals your power?
    Have you remembrances, the glimmering arches that span the summits of the mind?
    Have you beauty, that leads the heart from things fashioned of wood and stone to the holy mountain?
    Tell me, have you these in your houses?
    Or have you only comfort, and the lust for comfort, that stealthy thing that enters the house a guest, and then becomes a host and then a master?
    Ay, and it becomes a tamer, and with hook and scourge makes puppets of your larger desires.
    Though its hands are silken, its heart is of iron.
    It lulls you to sleep only to stand by your bed and jeer at the dignity of the flesh.
    It makes mock of your sound senses, and lays them in thistledown like fragile vessels.
    Verily the lust for comfort murders the passion of the soul, and then walks grinning in the funeral.
    But you, children of space, you restless in rest, you shall not be trapped nor tamed.
    Your house shall be not an anchor but a mast.”


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