Monday, August 3, 2020

Coping With Flight Anxiety

Travelling on an airplane is not new to me. My first experience was when I was probably 6 years old. I am not a frequent traveler, but during my study in Edinburgh, I did fly quite often. I was OK with it. I used to take direct flights KUL-LHR which were around 12-13 hours. Never had a slight worry or fear. 

Fast forward to 2018, I started to develop anxiety towards flying. Even before I board the plane, seeing other planes take off give me chill. There's this one time when I almost got a panic attack on flight. Heart pounding, legs trembled and numb at the same time, nauseated...but manage to control the situation by using the breathing technique. 

Yesterday I flew again, after 8 months avoiding it. It was Hari Raya Haji holiday after the Movement Control Order in Malaysia. It's the only option we have to avoid the expected massive traffic. Again I was trembling when I saw a plane take off. I tried to divert my attention to other things...and pray hard we won't encounter air turbulence and no panic attack. 

Once in the plane, I was again worried as I can see dark clouds. But they look a bit low so I'm still hopeful we will fly above that cloud. My 4 year old daughter was excited as always. When the flight take off and as it climb, it did shake a bit (probably due to thick cloud). Sufia was excited:

"wo wo wow dia nak jatuh ke ni? Nanti dia jatuh kan? Nanti dia jatuh."

Very helpful Sufia 😒