What The Hell?

When I was younger I was a spur of the moment kind of girl.  My friends and I would just jump in the car and go.

Who wants to go to NYC?  Hop in!

Philly?  Let’s go!

Busch Gardens in Virginia?  I’ll drive!

Who wants to go to Buffalo?  What’s in Buffalo?  Who knows?  Let’s find out!  (Turns out not much but hey, now I’ve been to Buffalo!)

Pocono Mountains?  Of course!

Some little town outside of Scranton where a friend’s father had a cabin?  Many times.

I would drive anywhere.

So would someone please tell me why I now have panic attacks when I have to drive on major highways?  What.The.Hell.

Yesterday I had to go to a meeting at one of our other offices.  This involved several major highways, a really scary bridge and a wee bit of city driving.  It also included clenched hands, boob sweat, shaking, dry mouth and praying of the “Oh please God, let me just get there” variety.  Four hours later I had to do it all again.  Only now?  Rush hour has begun.  I seriously thought I would puke all over myself.  Wouldn’t that be some twisted icing on my cake?

I’m an even worse passenger.  When the Big Guy drives, I flinch, cringe, cover my eyes and slam my imaginary brake pedal.  I wouldn’t be surprised if one day he opened the door and booted my fat ass out onto the highway.

When did I turn into this quivering idiot?  Sure, a healthy fear of the behemoths on the road today isn’t a bad thing but damn I take it to a whole new level.  What is my problem?  (Keep in mind we are discussing this one problem only.  Any other problems will be addressed…well not now.)

I have to go back again on Wednesday.  Not looking forward to it.  What can I do to calm myself?  Deep breathing doesn’t help and Xanax is not an option.  So my bloggy good friends, what can I do?  Help a girl out, willya?

And if we ever go anywhere together, I’ll drive and you can hold my hair while I puke. 

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10 Comments

Filed under Mama, Why?

10 responses to “What The Hell?

  1. Depending on which city I have to drive in I react the same way. Where I come from in Georgia there isn’t anything like the traffic up here in Metro DC. I can offer no advice to help. Sorry.

  2. OMG! Thank you for posting this! I thought I was alone. I was driving to Walmart the other night and almost turned around because I was so scared. It almost feels like that first day taking the baby home from the Hospital and you are thinking that every car out there is going to hit you! I don’t have any advice, except to say keep going and don’t let fear win.

  3. See, my advice isn’t GOOD advice for I just grip the wheel, gun the gas and go. I, too, don’t like a lot of traffic or bridges (I hold my breath when I go over them. Imagine how blue I was on the way to a friend’s house in Maryland when we went over some bridge that was about 32 miles long!!). I HATE big trucks. I hate idiots who think rain/snow/ice means they can still drive 85mph.

    So, my advice isn’t good. All I can say is don’t be scared. You gave birth AND are raising children….is there anything really any scarier than THAT??!!

    Give ’em hell!! Don’t let the roads/bridges/traffic win!!

  4. I thought I was the only one with boob sweat…

    Advice? Sorry, I’ve got none. I refused to drive in DC when we lived in Virginia because it scared the living daylights out of me. And now I am turning into one of those people who hates to drive at night. I am totally 31 going on 80.

  5. J.

    Funny that I was just thinking about this stuff the other day.
    We’re supposed to get smarter as we age, not lose our nerve!

  6. OMG I am the same way! I’m not so bad when I drive, although I do get a little nervous. But…when anyone else drives, including my husband, I am scared out of my wits. For me I think it’s just a control issue, but I don’t know. Chris and I have gotten into plenty of arguements while driving, but I am trying to keep myself calmer and it is getting better.

    Ok, so that didn’t help you one bit. Sorry.

  7. I’ve noticed in my “years” I’ve gotten less wreckless about my driving and more defensive about “THAT ASSHOLE” driver in the next lane..but driving doesn’t make me have an anxiety attack so I’m not sure what to tell you to help.

    Just…hm….soothing music to help?

    Maybe? No, sorry I’m not of much use today am I a? Chalk it up to sleep deprivation.

  8. My guess as to why you’ve changed? Responsibilities.

    Now that you’re a Mom with little ones depending on you, you’re suddenly seeing all the potential dangers surrounding you.

    For me, doing reckless things in my younger years was relatively common. Now that I have a job, a mortgage, a wife, an adorable little dog… That changes things. I’m more careful. I don’t seem to stress about things out of my control though, and I’m thankful for that. If I did, I’d never get any rest.

  9. Hmm I can relate.. I still wont drive to Atlanta.. I used to be the grand driver until an auto accident in 1998 changed all of that.. I became Ms. Queen Chicken of the Highway.. Usually I run 2 lane back roads.. when I do the highway.. I just turn the Music loud.. know where i am going .. and do my own driving thing.. I pass when I have too.. and usually stay in the slower lane.. If some Dumb Ass is going to run up my butt I slow down just to piss him off.. so he will pass me.. now thats not advice mind you.. it could cause a massive case of road rage for the driver behind me .. but what is life with out adventure.. On the other hand.. I have traversed this country of ours on the back of a Motorcycle.. Through the highways and by ways all over the place.. I was not doing the driving just hanging out on the back of the bike…. On occasion I will even shut my eyes when I am driving…. LOL.. actually that happened a few weeks ago on a 2 laner because I skimmed a buck’s ass.. ( it was rainy out and apparently it is deer mating season around here.. So we had an episode of BUCKS GONE WILD …apparently they do not understand the word CAR when they have little Doe butts on their minds.. Thank God I did not damage myself or my car.. although there was a time a couple years back when I was not so lucky.. I am now the proud owner of a 2003/2005 Toyota Matrix.. .I say that because the whole driver’s side of my car.. all the panels including mirrors on each side of my car were replaced.. after a Doe came careening off a golf course.. YES A GOLF COURSE and body slammed the side of my car.. (MY SIDE) and the damn Doe got up.. shook her head and wandered off.. ( hmm if I did not know better I would have thought she had a few too many at the Golf Course Clubhouse) Oh well ….enough Deer rambling.. point is.. I can relate.. Take a deep breath.. keep a diet caffiene free soda handy to sip.. get where you have to go.. tune out and turn on some tunes.. and most of all just breath and you will get there…
    Good luck on your next expedition.

  10. Crap! There may be a crazy comment from me, and if so, ignore it. Just as I was going to comment, I spilled my cherry coke in my keyboard and had to clean it quickly. Anyway, I get really car sick and very terrified as a passenger.. but otherwise I am OK. What’s odd is the more familiar I am with someone’s driving, the more scared I get.

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