Flying terrifies me. I have seen Castaway and way too much news. For all those high school students I have flown with to Europe and other parts of the world, I think you will be surprised. I hid it well. But this morning as I am about to get on a plane headed to Las Vegas on a mission trip, I am writing a blog. It’s a distraction. Here are things I have learned:
1. Distract yourself. Take your headphones to listen to music. If I am going down, I want to be listening to some good music to usher me on to Jesus. I told you, terrified. Plus earplugs
or headphones can cure a lot of ills. I can listen to music or PRETEND that I am listening to music. I am not much of a talker on flights. Concentrating on living.
2. Sit close to a child or dog-maybe. This can be fun, but that plan can go south.
3. Clothes: Wear easy to slip on and off shoes. I get pulled over and checked EVERY TIME I GO THROUGH THE LINE. Padded down. I get the full experience. Invest in a light weight jacket for the cold moments.
4. Take some snacks. I usually have some variation of crackers since I get so anxious. I also ask for Sprite to drink.
5. Take something light to read like a magazine. Nothing serious-flying is enough serious stuff for me.
6. Try to get sleep the night before even though you know that you will not. It’s a great idea. Take meds for that if needed. This has backfired on me in that I still didn’t sleep but have had to lead high school kids through airports & be almost out of it.
7. Always have headache meds close and a water bottle. I tend to get a headache from all the stress and pressure changes. I also just want to be able to take some ibuprofen if I need to calm down. I am not above medicating. I do a lot of praying during flying, but God invented meds for the right moment also.
8. Never pass a bathroom and not go. Nothing worse than being in the middle seat and knowing that you have got to go!! My bladder was stretched almost beyond its limit in an airport in Japan once. I don’t remember this fondly.
8. Pray for your pilot. He may not be a Christian but God is still in charge regardless of what the pilot believes. Jesus, take the wheel.
Turbulence is akin to one of those rubbery strings that were attached to a ball and a paddle. I fell like I am the ball and at any moment that string may break.
Every time I land I say that I will never fly again. Once a plane I was on had to make an emergency landing, fire trucks and all. It turned out to be nothing, but the damage was done. I have also had to spend the night in Port Au Prince, Haiti because the storms were so bad. The airline put us up for the night in an amazing hotel so that turned out well. I have also been stopped and asked questions like where are you going, what do you do for a living…quite sure I don’t look very harmful. Suffice to say, I hate flying but it is a necessary means to an end. Vegas here we come!
PS: I am editing this as we are in the airport leaving, but we have a delay. Why? Record rainfall in Vegas.
PSS: Then on the flight home we had little wind problem. Let’s just say that after awhile, God might have quit listening to my cries to save me from sure death.