I’m currently in Canada visiting Naru before I head to America. So far Canada has been a whirlwind. It’s been exciting and gorgeous. It’s been fast-paced and exhausting. It’s been loud and busy. We just spent two days in Vancouver. We went to Stanley Park, Granville Island, and a hockey game. All standard Vancouver fare. Today we took a ferry to Nanaimo and stopped at a shopping mall, Costco, and Cathedral Grove. After we arrived in Parksville we had a quiet dinner and relaxed for the first time since I got here. I wasn’t very tried at bed time, so I decided to organize my suitcase. I have three but to make things easier (since we’re only here one night), I left the other 2 in the car. That may have been a mistake because while organizing the one in the house, I couldn’t find my passport, and I had no recollection of where I put it. I wracked my brain, but I found nothing in there as to the location of my passport. Cue panic attack. I swear when it happens the blood rushes to my head and the sound inside is deafening. I was afraid to do anything. I was afraid I couldn’t get to America. I was afraid I’d be stuck in Canada getting a new passport and be an undue burden on Naru. Most of all I was afraid to wake up Naru and ask her to help me. This brings to my number one rule for surviving and staying mentally healthy while traveling (or any time really).
DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP.
As someone who struggles this is here as a reminder for myself but maybe it can help you too. I’d like to think I’m pretty good at asking for help, but when I have an anxiety attack my normal brain goes right out the window, and it’s replaced by some brain that can’t do simple tasks. I’m sure you know that traveling can be awesome and exciting, but it can be exhausting (mentally and physically). It’s especially difficult for someone (me) who needs life in order (ie. not living out of boxes and/or suitcases) to survive. That’s why I pushed so hard to get the house done as quickly as possible. Not only just because I was leaving but more so that I could live a normal peaceful life.
After I got up the courage to leave the small room I was in and ask Naru for help, she readily helped me and talked to me, and I started to calm down a little bit. After I found the passport, of course, I calmed down even more. Now even as I’m writing this, my heart is still beating rapidly, and I did have a cry about it earlier but that’s really no big deal where Naru is concerned. I’ve cried at least a hundred times in front of her or while looking at her on Skype.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m having a great time. I love traveling and nothing will ever want to make me stop, but it can be overwhelming for me at times. I just need to find the best ways to deal with the overwhelming sensations and talk to those around me and hope they understand and are willing to help. It’s the best I can do.