Weeks ago, I received a random message from a high school friend saying she thought of me every time she hears and sees the video of Jonas Blue’s Perfect Strangers. She said I look like the girl. Moreover, she likened it to my life– carefree, traveling and filled with ‘fleeting’ love affairs.
I wanted to protest and say to her it’s not all true especially the love affair part. At the same time, it made me realized I do a pretty good job in handling my worries. Very few people know that no matter how I seem to live in the moment I struggle with anxiety attacks. For some reason I developed it. There was even a time it became so bad that I had two go through therapy sessions. Yes, like everyone else I panic over my future, of time flying so fast, and of getting old and alone. I dread Christmas because it means another year ends and I haven’t ticked enough boxes in my bucket list. Worst, I got scared of flying! The thought of dying in a plane crash without having met my soulmate yet terrified me.
Traveling solo is not my cup of tea. The anxiety makes it even harder to pursue. Fortunately, I discovered the best antidote. Ever heard of, “when it feels scary to jump, that’s exactly when you jump”? That is exactly what I do- every time, and without second thoughts of the consequences. I book my solo trips when I feel most scared to do it. Otherwise I end up staying the same place and that is even scarier for me.
Does the worry go away once I booked my flight? Definitely NO. Other set of worries starts to creep in. I worried about getting rape. I would asked myself, “what if no one talks to me and I get lonely?”‘ Just the thought of dining alone upsets me or being the lone Asian girl among white travelers. Fear can be a bitch. I am thankful though for my struggle, without it I would not discovered that I am equally badass. I am mentally tough.
It is perfectly normal to be afraid. It is not something I am ashamed of. What is important is I acknowledged fear. I make a conscious effort to not let it control me or keep me from living the life that I want. I admit it is not easy thing to do. So how do I keep my fear at bay? I show fear my middle finger, straight face I tell fear to back off. I do this repeatedly in a day (until my flight even) until fear realized it cannot stop my dream to see beautiful places and meet fascinating people.