So this passenger wiggled past me during the boarding of this flight. And I knew the moment I sat down and saw her heading down the aisle that she would be my flight mate. Yep, sure enough here she comes. One second, now we all have to get adjusted. Passenger A, her (affectionately referred to as Passenger B) and me.

Okay. Now, I’m sandwiched between the window and Passenger B, and uhh yeah … it’s going to be a long flight.

I’m gazing around the cabin and already several passengers appear to be sleeping — I am so jealous! How does it happen so fast? They find a seat, buckle up and as soon as their head hits the seat they’re dosing off. I just hate that. I’ve never been able to sleep during a flight. Never. No matter what time of day I travel; no matter how exhausted I am prior to travel…I can’t relax. On airplanes, my mind seems to say “Atten…TION”. Pretty much, I’m up for the duration.

And it’s not a fear of flying. It’s more like a fear of dying.

Now here comes the stewardess, I mean flight attendant, and already a baby is crying which means my southwest flight #3058 ambiance is now complete.

When I say it’s not a fear of flying but of dying I know you get it. It’s natural to think about what would happen if one suffered an in-air catastrophe and became atmospheric debris 30,000 feet above ground. That’s normal.

I hate to keep interrupting mid-thought, but Passenger B is dangerously close to slobbering on my shirt sleeve and her sweater is scratching my forearm. Yes we are that close. UGH. I shift quickly and it looks like I moved too offensively. Oh well, that shrugged her off. Uh, no, that’s a false reading because here she is again. So irritating. Let me try something…

I see now that by planting my arm firmly above the armrest, I can wedge her into her seat. So, that’s my new position.

Anyway, when I fly, like clockwork my mind races to all the reasons it would be horrible if I died:

  1. I have yet to self realize.
  2. I have yet to accomplish anything meaningful.
  3. It would kill my mom.

Always those three, sometimes in random order or versions of the same.

What’s weird is these were the same thoughts I had before I got sober. I worried about fulfilling my potential and my mom’s happiness before I began this self empowering, self loving, responsible, sober adulting. Before sobriety I worried if I would get life together in time to live. Now I worry about how much time I have to live now that I’m getting it together. Funny, it’s just a simple twist of words. Curious though, about the driving force behind them.

I want life to go as planned. I want things to happen as they were designed. Whatever, great wonderful thing I was sent here to tackle and accomplish, I want that. I want to realize all of the wonderful potential I was blessed with and then some. Yes, ridiculous as it may seem, I want to ignore my choice to waste 35 years with addiction riddled sub par performances and realize all that I was meant to.

And I want my mom to live to see it all. I desperately wish my dad could as well but he didn’t outlive my squandering ways. I’ll have to live with that open wound.

If I stay on track I can finish well; Lord willing and the creek don’t rise (as my mom would say).

And I’ll be damn. Loud, interrupted nasal snorts are erupting from Passenger B. She’s snoring. I think I’ll use a portion of my travel time to research the causes of this most irritating behavior.

And to all my hostages who suffered through the elaborate nasal melodies, induced by my countless drunken collapses, I’m so sorry. I am humbly, regrettably, and remorsefully sorry.

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