I am an Aerophobia sufferer. I have been for the longest time. I’m not really sure where exactly the fear came from, all I do know is that somewhere in my late twenties I suddenly developed a debilitating fear of flying, to the point where for a period of about 10 years, I simply refused to get on a plane. You can imagine how difficult that has made life, what with my family living in Cape Town and me living more than a thousand kilometers away in Jo’burg. Trips to visit always included two full days of travel, driving down and back up to Jozi.
Then we started our first adoption process with Ava, which involved a trip to Cape Town for our adoption screening, a trip Walter insisted we make by flying. I was a mess. I had to have a tranquilizer before we even left for the airport and I spent the entire drive to the airport and the check in process at the airport begging Walter not to make me do it. It got way worse when we got on the plane, I hyperventilated the entire flight, which I spent with my face buried in Walter shoulder while I whimpered and cried the entire way to Cape Town. It was my very own personal hell. To say I was terrified is an utter under statement. But the sense of triumph I had when we landed and I knew I’d done it was like the greatest high I’d ever experienced.
Three weeks later we got the call that we’d been selected by a birth mom and we were required to fly again to Cape Town. Again I was tranquilized and paralyzed by fear. Again I whimpered and whined and cried the entire flight.
And so began my long battle with overcoming my phobia of flying. Walter flat our refused to drive to Cape Town ever again, most certainly not with a baby in the car for the 14 hour trip and so, in an attempt to not pass on my irrational fear to my child, I have white knuckled and ground my teeth two to three times a year for the last 4 years on flights to Cape Town and being forced to face my fear regularly has resulted in me feeling as though I’ve been cured of my irrational fear of flying.
On Saturday, I flew alone with my two girls to Cape Town, sans any tranquilizers, I never whimpered or cried once, in fact, I’d go so far to say, I managed the entire trip without feeling fearful once! Something that would I would not even have considered doing a year ago, I did without any trouble on Saturday! And I have been feeling triumphant ever since. I conquered my fear with sheer determination to continue to face my extreme fear until I had conquered and overcome it and I DID IT!
I am a freaking rock star!