Hannover

So it’s been a while since I last posted.

Remember in around November when I embarked on solo travel abroad for the first time, and it pretty much all ended in tears? Or rather an anxiety induced meltdown caused by a combination of getting used to new medication, being in a completely different country , and a rather unanticipated huge language barrier resulting in feeling very alone wound up and in a state of what I’m going to call ‘panic attack staticus’ basically going from one panic attack to the next. So I came home early.

So on the 12th July, I went on a trip that I booked back in October. I went to Hannover in Germany to see someone that I admire and have done for more than 10 years now, just because of her badass attitude to life, her own battles against mental illness and her passion in performance and her amazing voice, in concert – P!nk.

I took 2 flights to get to Hannover, going via Amsterdam with a 4 hour layover there, and returning via Charles de Gaulle (France) , which is roughly a round trip of around 900 miles. What’s really strange is that I have almost no anxiety on planes or in airports but I’m not gonna start arguing about that! Anyway, I left home at about 7 on the morning of the 12th , getting a lift to Leeds Bradford airport for my 10am flight to Amsterdam. The waiting around is what causes a lot of annoyance and anxiety but literally only that part of it. I did however get free snacks and drinks on all my flights which was great. 4 hour wait at Amsterdam for the flight to Hannover….god that was loooong. Got a gift of a migraine as well, fortunately I’d come prepared with my sumatriptan and it had gone after a couple of hours. Grabbed a quick sandwich for lunch , the language barrier was a little challenge but not as bad as Budapest. Landed in Hannover 15 minutes later than anticipated, however having previously looked up the distance between where I was staying and the airport in Hannover and it was only half an hour so I wasn’t worried especially as I had a pre booked taxi, only had hand baggage and it was still more than 90 minutes until P!nk was anywhere near due to be on stage. Got to the hotel fine, got changed, quick sit down and bit of food before getting a taxi to the venue. It was a bit intimidating initially with all the people, all the flashing lights and stalls of merchandise and food.

I did have a plan beforehand though as I knew what I wanted to do, get some merch, some chips, then adrink and snack once I was through the stadium gates.

The crowds were huge but nifty feet and beelining for the ..ahem.. essentials plus the above was easy stuff. Still wasn’t really anxious either. In terms or the language barrier, I’d done German at school… Oooh around 10 years back so I did have a grounding plus I bought a couple of handy phrasebooks as prompts and did sort of revision so I was ok if scratchy. I did successfully manage to order chips, then a drink plus biscuit, say thank you (Danke schΓΆn) many times and join in with the moaning about the size of the queue for the ladies toilet πŸ˜‚.

As for the concert, words can’t describe how amazing this woman is.

So many of her songs and lyrics I and probably a lot of you can really relate to, because of struggling with anxiety, depression and the shit I went through with all the gaslighting and manipulation. Who Knew in particular when I heard it live I just about managed to song, I was really choked up.

“I don’t want control, I want to let go!”

This is summing anxiety up for me really, you want to stop thinking about everything and trying to control every inch of your life and surroundings but it’s practically impossible sometimes. People say chill out, I can’t do that!!!!

Her encore was AWESOME. Flying round the arena with “So what” playing. Not just once but at least 8 times. Incredible.

Then I walked back to the hotel , I did get a little anxious as initially there was a huge crowd but then it branched off and I had directions on my phone back to my hotel and I got there in under an hour and had already pre booked my taxi back to the airport.

Funny story actually…. I’m nosey naturally…. Saw a red button ….. Guess what happened next πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ came up with a sheepish ” knocked it in my sleep” when the guy came rushing in luckily I was covered up!! Turned out it was a disabled alarm…awkward!

I’d asked when checking in for a “breakfast package” to be made up because I’d got an early flight and due to a certain airline ballsing my online check in up I had to check in at the airport, had to leave at 6:45am. But the package was the best I’d ever seen – crossiant, pain au raisin (ew!) , Beautifully cold water, apple, banana, grapes, some kind of spongy chocolates and a sandwich jam packed with cheese, ham, cucumber and salad… Beautiful.

Successfully negotiated manual check in at the airport and around 90 minute/2 hour turn around between landing at Charles de Gaulle (not a fan of that airport!) and arrived back in England then caught the train home from the airport. Instantaneous anxiety from rude people, people sneaking around me, waiting for the train. At that point I wished I could go back!!

Now back on home turf, I’ve been in my new job since mid June minimal stress which is great and no horrible stuff so far even better! I’m currently awaiting scan results from an MRI I had in June on my spine and to be seen by the pain team at hospital. I’ve also been referred to the rheumatologist because of some blood tests and symptoms I’ve had and continue to have , with the thoughts surrounding potentially fibromyalgia, which I’m inclined to agree with.

Overall, I think progress has definitely been made ….. Can only be good

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