Being Anxious Saved Me From A Worse Disaster For Once

I’ve been busy with getting ready for a trip. I’ve known about the trip for a while, but with everything else going on this past year, I couldn’t afford to spend time and energy on trip preparations until this month. Now, as the final weeks count down, I’ve had to systematically prepare myself in a situation where I don’t really have that much room for delays or procrastination. Unless I wanted to give myself a truly awful final week before the trip, I needed to methodically work through everything in a timely manner. Thankfully, I’m good at getting organized, so it was incredibly easy to come up with a broad to-do list and then sort tasks into a day-by-day order that would still leave me with time to rest so I wasn’t burning myself out before the trip. Unfortunately, everything blew up pretty much immediately when I lost an entire day to discovering that my flights had changed and the agency I booked with not only hadn’t notified me, but didn’t even seem to be aware that anything had changed when I started digging into it.

Honestly, it was pretty much a confirmation of one of my worst anxieties about big trips. I don’t fly much, so I don’t really have a wide breadth of experience to call on. Which is why I’m learning that booking my tickets through a booking agency online wasn’t worth the money I saved. They’re refunding me the entire ticket price because the airlines changed my flight times by several hours, so it isn’t the horrible situation it could have been, but I did have to buy new tickets at double the price. I also now have to make my own way, separately, from the Midwest to the East Coast since flying out of the Midwest would have quadrupled the price instead of doubling it. Arranging a separate flight would still be cheaper, but not by much these days, which is why I’m going to drive.

As far as nightmare scenarios go, it is pretty much second only to “I got to the airport and discovered I’d misread the time so I arrived too late to get on my flight.” I’m glad I was anxiously going through all my travel details, even if I was only doing that as a way of pacifying my increased anxiety due to learning that I’d need nicer clothes than I currently own for some of the stuff the group has planned for the trip. I mean, it stands to reason that I’d need new clothes, but I genuinely hadn’t even thought about it since my disastrous encounter with my own closet back in January. It’s a difficult, loaded subject for me these days and while I have time to address the issue that I didn’t have back in January, it was still a rough place to be when I learned that my flights weren’t compatible with my trip anymore (they were all too early by several hours. Technically doable, but not practically or even inconveniently doable).

At this point in time, I’ve resolved as much as I can. I’ve figured out my flight information, started making plans for getting to the East Coast, and done some research on getting together some decent outfits. It’s all doable and all within my ability to handle, but it was sure a rough day to have it all happen over the course of seven hours with no time to process anything before something new needed my attention. Now, as I try to get back to the schedule I made for myself and updated with new to-do items after yesterday, I’m just trying to focus on doing the bare minimum required and giving myself as much grace as I can afford. I’m exhausted from all of yesterday’s action (just another reminder that I write these a week before they’re posted) and from losing extra sleep thanks to a delivery person showing up at my apartment by mistake at a quarter to midnight and hammering on my door until I answered, so I’m doing my best to take things slowly.

It’s frustrating, to be back in survival/coping mode after a week away from the ongoing stress and series of personal disasters that has been 2023 so far. I really need things to quiet down for a bit so I can go into this trip without feeling miserable and burned out, but I’m starting to think that might not happen. I’m really not sure what else could go wrong at this point, but it’s not like I expected my booking agency to fail at a thing they explicitly said they do, nor did I expect to basically need an entirely new wardrobe (though I’ll admit I could have anticipated that one, even if I couldn’t have reasonably expected myself to address it any sooner). Who knows what will happen in the next week? I’m already planning to take my car into the shop in order to make sure that it won’t break down on me while I’m driving, so I’m not sure what else I could do at this point. It’s difficult to prevent things from going wrong when they mostly seem to come out of nowhere.

All I can do is keep trying, though. Keep moving forward. One small, exhausted step at a time. At least I can afford to handle all these problems as they come up, thanks to how much overtime I’m doing. It is not lost on me, though, that these problems might not have been as impactful if I was less exhausted from all this overtime, which would have left me with the time and energy to work on my impending trip much sooner than this month. Though, to be fair, it’s not like I would have had any other options to fix the issue with my flights if I’d noticed it sooner. I’d just be less panicked due to the time I had to fix the problem, but also probably more panicked because I wouldn’t have the financial padding to quickly purchase new airline tickets. Maybe this situation was the better one to be in after all. I’ll never really know, unfortunately. All I can do is my best with the situation I’m in.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s