Things lately have been crazy. Crazy Awesome, that is. I have done more in the last couple of weeks than I’ve done in the last two years. I made it past the freeway! That damn freeway was like a line drawn between me and the rest of the world. I guess from the perspective of a ‘normal’ person, I’ve gone to the other side of town. Big whoop. But from the perspective of a housebound-until-recently agoraphobic? I’ve gone to the other side of town! HIGH FIVE!
So as I mentioned on insta, I have an event on next weekend that is being held at a park, a fair distance away. Three months ago I would’ve said No Way José am I going to that. But apparently I say yes to things now, because I decided to bite the bullet and try my hardest to get there. I figured my best bet would be to get myself to the park a few weeks before, so that I could take away the horrible scare-factor in my own time, while I’m comfortable and relaxed, instead of under pressure to make it there on time and be dressed nicely, not sweating profusely like an anxious mess, yadda yadda. So on Monday morning I got dressed, got in the car and drove myself half the distance, which was conveniently a shopping centre. I walked around, bought some stuff for Lila, got myself nice and calm, and then got back into the car and drove the rest of the way.
I make it sound really simple, when in reality it was excruciating – but, in a good way. In the way that a workout is horrendous and you’re tired and sweaty and aching and then you get to the end of it and think fuck yeah, I’m a machine! And you feel awesome. So I knew that if I managed to make it there alive, I would feel incredible – it was just that I had to suck it up and get there. I did everything I could to soothe myself for the journey. I made a playlist, I got a hot chocolate for the road, I even had a little bottle of Rescue Remedy in my bag in case shit got real (it didn’t).
Luckily I knew the route really well because it was one I used to drive very frequently, so the only time I had to stress out about where to go was when I parked my car. I was shaking, I was repeating to Lila “It’s okay, it’s alright, calm down”, even though she was cool as a cucumber and I was the hot mess.
But I did it. I got there.
There is really nothing like the feeling of conquering your fears and doing something you thought there was no way in hell you’d be able to do. We lay on the grass for ages – Lila had a great time rolling around, plucking flowers from the ground and giggling at nothing in particular. When we left I was on such a high, I forgot to actually take a good walk around and figure out where things were. (I shouldn’t really be doing that anyway, as I think it’s a bit of an agoraphobic tendency, however I’m so keen to make it to this party that I’m okay with needing some of my ‘quirks’ to get there and feel comfortable).
So my plan for the next week is to drive to the park a couple of times. The drive is the part I’m most anxious about, so I’m going to do it again and again until I’m sick of it. And then hopefully, when the weekend rolls around, I’ll be less like this:
And more like this:
Wish me luck!