Manic Panic (not the hair stuff though – the crazy stuff)

13 May

I am a planner. In my little heart of tiny little hearts, I like to plan things. I write lists. I draft emails. I draft ideas. I draft drafts. It’s never-ending. I like to know what’s coming next. I like things to be under control and I like to be in control of them. I am the boss of everything. It suits me. I function best in a state of stressed out panic.

When it comes to vacations, especially vacations of the Alaskan cruise magnitude, I go a little crazy. There’s a lot to plan. There’s the obvious stuff like airfare and hotels and which excursions we’ll go on. But then there’s all the little stuff. Like nail clippers. I need to remember to pack nail clippers because I know I’m going to want to clip my nails at some point during the trip and if I forget them I just know we’ll get to Seattle and Andrew will be all “honey, where are the nail clippers I need them rightthisinstant.” Because that’s just the way marriage works.

And snacks. We need snacks for the airport. Because apparently, I’m a 38-year-old soccer mom who needs to remind her husband (who diligently puts up with my shit) that he’s going to get hungry because the flights are looooong and I can’t be bothered to pay $13 for a salad of wilted iceberg lettuce with half a tomato on a damn airplane and still cold-to-the-touch, previously frozen muffin.

We are half packed. We leave Saturday. And we are only half packed!

*Cue the meltdown!*

Then there’s the stuff we have to do before we leave. Take the dogs to my mother’s. Pick up birth control pills so no damned babies get conceived in the land of Sarah Palin. PACK! Finish work. Go to a baseball game. Get my nails did because – dammit! – I simply cannot pull off formal attire without something resembling a manicure. And I need a hair cut. Which I’m getting, in an hour. Because apparently the only time I EVER get my hair cut is right before I embark on some really important trip or before I do something really important like buy a house. In fact, the first time I went to my stylist was the week before I got married. Second time? Right before we bought a house. The last time? Two days before we left for San Francisco.

What I’m trying to remind myself is that it’s okay. everything is okay. If I forget something, assuming it’s not my wallet or my passport, it doesn’t really matter. But still. No matter how many times I tell myself that, the little voice in my head (what? you don’t have voices in your head? LIAR!) starts to get more and more screechy and stabby and just keeps reading off the stack of 176 lists of things to do and pack and accomplish. SHUT UP VOICE!

How do you reign in the pre-vacation/trip chaos?

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11 Responses to “Manic Panic (not the hair stuff though – the crazy stuff)”

  1. ChickNamedHermia May 13, 2010 at 2:57 PM #

    Lol I have a bit of a panic the night before and that’s it…travelling is probably the only thing I don’t really get stressed out at!

  2. Lara May 13, 2010 at 4:01 PM #

    omg I do the same thing… mini 1st aid kit in a ziplock and all! The funny thing is I barely need half the crap I plan for but WHAT IF!?!

    My bf is so relaxed and thank god we’re balancing one another out a little bit. I’m starting to just not worry so much because no matter how much you prepare, you have to have confidence in yourself that you will be able to handle the situation when it happens. This doesn’t really apply to packing but… kinda?

    It’s the crap you have to do before you leave that bugs me the most. It really has to be done just to make life easier when you get home exhausted.

    You’ll be fine… just don’t forget your camera! 🙂 Have a great trip!

  3. Alverna May 13, 2010 at 7:07 PM #

    “Pick up birth control pills so no damned babies get conceived in the land of Sarah Palin.” …LOVE IT!…

    I carry a piece of paper around in my pocket or purse and every time I think of something that needs packed/done, I write it down. Because I’m OLD and will forget it if I don’t do it right away or write it down.

    I also clean house. I absolutely cannot leave town with a messy house. Yes, I am strange.

    • Terra May 14, 2010 at 4:34 PM #

      I like to clean house before I vacation too. Its just easier to come home to a clean house. I’m glad I’m not the only one!

  4. Margaret May 13, 2010 at 8:31 PM #

    Praying for a safe, full of fun and frolic trip.

    Do you have a fancy nightie to go along with the pills?????

    • Terra May 14, 2010 at 4:34 PM #

      I did get a fancy little number to go with the pills 🙂

  5. CuppyCakes May 14, 2010 at 4:26 AM #

    I have a really bad tendancy of forgetting how quickly time goes by, and I wake up one morning … usually about 4 days before I go overseas, and realise I am in no way prepared.
    I think the best part of this was ‘no damned babies’. AMEN sister friend!

  6. Stacey Paradise May 14, 2010 at 8:13 AM #

    OMG we are so much alike it’s frightening!

    I write LISTS of things to pack, and I nail it down to which bag/suitcase it’s going on. I tend to actually over-prepare and over-pack to the point that I drive myself crazy. Thankfully Billy’s so effing laid back that he’s able to pull me down out of my crazy-face-tailspin and tell me to chill out. “It’s vacation! It’s supposed to be fun!” Thank God I have Billy and you have Andrew!

    Have so much fun on your trip! Taking a cruise around Alaska is one of the things I most want to do in my lifetime. It’s so different and you will see so many amazing, breathtaking things.

    And when you get back, and I get back from Vegas (OMG I need to pack! haha) let’s schedule that dinner/drinks double-date. 🙂

    • Terra May 14, 2010 at 4:39 PM #

      Thank goodness for boys who help us chill the eff out! And yes to the double-date after all this traveling is done! I can’t wait to hear about your Vegas adventures!

  7. Michelle May 14, 2010 at 9:11 PM #

    I am crazy like that before I go on trips, too! I went to Antarctica a couple years ago and got done packing at 6am. I had to leave the house for my flight at 9am. We needed a million things but were only allowed 25 lbs. of luggage for 3 weeks. In ANTARCTICA! That means heavy clothes!!! Plus we had moved into our first house 2 weeks earlier, and oh yeah, I had to finish my full-time semester of college a week early for the trip. That meant I was taking finals that week and still finishing a presentation (to be given on the trip) at 3am and then packed until 6am. Anywho, I hope this made sense but it was just the most crazy time ever. When I think of nightmare packing stories for trips, I think of that time in my life. I won’t even go into the time we packed up/moved/cleaned our rental house and left for Kauai the next day. Why do I do those things to myself?? Have a super fun time!!!!!

  8. Aly May 23, 2010 at 9:53 AM #

    I just tend to obsessively pack/repack.. it helps my brain slow down.

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