Monday, June 8, 2009

Upcoming family vacation

In exactly two weeks, I'll be attending a week long family reunion event. Actually, it's a family reunion for everyone else, but for me, it's more like meeting dozens of strangers. I'm trying hard not to go into flip-out mode, but this, along with other issues on my mind (another post) kick my anxiety into high gear.

Normally, I don't even do "family" vacations. But since, my mother and her husband have been haranguing me to go for the last three years (I politely declined each offer), I thought I'd at least make an effort this time. I have been reassured that there will be people my age, and that there won't be a lot of kum-ba-ya moments. Although I did hear, one aunt is apparently trying to organize everything, including making sure everyone has each other's phone numbers and addresses. It could be worse if she wanted to have everyone wear t-shirts with "C._____ family reunion."

So why am I so worried?
1) a bunch of strangers whom I know nothing about
2) visiting with my step-sister/sharing a room which may feel awkward
3) change of routine/eating habits
4) feeling
very out of shape/disgusted with my body
5) general stress
6) no real escape

I'm trying hard to look at the positive--that this could be a great experience, that I'll meet interesting people, that people really won't give a hoot about my appearance, that I really can be okay in awkward feeling situations, etc.

Okay, time for more self-talk. Maybe in two weeks time, I'll feel slightly more optimistic.


Kristina said...

I absolutely understand the anxiety surrounding the term "family reunion". For me, family trips/visits are challenging enough.
Are there things that you KNOW that you can do while on this trip that will make you feel better? (Or serve as a 'check' for your anxiety?)
Hope the next two weeks will give you the time to wrap your head around the trip. And, personally, I think you are quite brave to do this!

Cammy said...

I hear you on this, family get-togethers on any scale can be tough. Maybe, though, such a big crowd will make it easier to melt away from the spotlight when you need to recharge, since the attention will be more diffuse? Still, any change of routine is tough, but try to look at it as a challenge for yourself. When I go on a trip, I try to tell myself that I am leaving the ED behind. Locking it up in a kennel like a dog, and waving good-bye. You know the changes are temporary, so try to relax and enjoy, and maybe use it as a way to break some habits you may have been stuck on recently.

I have to admit, I have some selfish excitement about this whole endeavor because it will bring you within visiting range of moi! I will have another e-mail for you on that later today.

Kim said...

I completely understand your anxiety too! I tend to get very anxious before things like this, and I make lists of what I'm worried about. When all is said and done, it's never as bad as I think, but that doesn't seem to make me any less anxious the next time. Like Kristina said, you can use some time before the trip to come up with little strategies to make it a little more enjoyable for you...hopefully. I hate leaving my bubble, but sometimes it's a good thing. If it's not, it's only a temporary departure... That's what I try to tell myself :)

Tiptoe said...

Kristina, yes, I'm going to think about things I can do and bring to quell my anxiety. A lot I just won't know until I actually get there. I'm hoping the place will have a wifi or ethernet connection, so I can use my netbook.

Cammy, love the idea of locking the Ed in a dog kennel. It's true, this is a good challenge for me, though a tad scary too.

Yes, it will be nicer to be within driving distance to you!

Kim, I agree with you that many times trips have never been as bad as I expected. Still, like you, it doesn't help the anxiety. Andy es, temporary is a good word to carry along on these trips.