CH: A bit strange of a day yesterday...let me preface this by saying to those who are not already aware...I am DEATHLY afraid of flying. I always have been for the most part, but my fear has steadily gotten worse over the last 10 years or so...to the point now where I literally have panic and anxiety attacks when I am in the air, or sometimes just thinking about it....it's a horrible horrible feeling and I have not yet figured out how to conquer my fear or at least just relax and let be what will be...
Anyways, I am part of the Toastmasters club at my work, and someone gave a speech yesterday about the fear of public speaking. In his speech, he also mentioned a fear of flying, and gave a statistic that said "90% of things that people are afraid of happening, never actually happen".
So I thought - interesting...I know I am scared of a LOT of things...flying being pretty close to the top....90% huh? Alright, that helps a little....
We got home last night and I quickly checked my email...the subject of one of them from a friend says, "Leave It In God's Hands"....just a fwd email...didn't have time to read it yet though...
Then we turn on the tv and decide to watch Supernatural...which we haven't watched since 2 seasons ago I think...but were just flipping channels and that's where we landed. The episode, strangely, was about fear. Jensen Ackles character was infected with a "Ghost Sickness", and this made him deathly afraid of everything....it got worse and worse til he was scared of puppy dogs and having hallucinations. Others who had it eventually died from a heart attack due to the fear.
Strange day...common theme...
Then, Supernatural was over...we're getting up and about to turn the tv off to go to bed, when all of a sudden, "Breaking News - Plane crash in Buffalo, NY". Wasn't there just a plane down in the Hudson River a month ago or so????? A miracle survival at that.
My eyes glued to the tv I'm listening to every word....we frequently have flown to Buffalo as this is the nearest major airport to the town where I went to school and where Dan's family and my dad live. We are very familiar with the area, the airport, and have even flown on similar planes as the one that crashed.
My fears all flooded back to me and I just couldn't stop thinking about the next time that I'll have to fly and how any bit of bravery I have conjured up in the last year or so is out the window again.....
And then this morning I see an interview with the brother of one of the passengers...and he's talking about delivering the news to his parents who were on vacation in Florida...and the reaction from his mother....and my heart just broke. Now I'm thinking about the pain that this poor mother is feeling, and father as well. And then I'm wondering who else was on the plane...were there children? Were other parents of adult or young children grieving today because they lost their child last night?
Horrible news....not sure how to take it...I just know it was a very strange day....as if God was preparing me and I just took it the wrong way....yes, 90% of things you are afraid of happening don't actually happen....but 10% of those things do.
JH: As some of you know, my boyfriend's family is full of seasoned pilots. I've been privy to quite a few aviation discussions over the last few weeks, starting with the Hudson River landing and now the Buffalo crash.
If it makes you feel any better Crystal, they said that there was absolutely no reason for that plane to crash other than inexperience and bad judgment. They had the plane on cruise control when they shouldn't have which changed the positioning of the wings, and they appeared to have pulled up rather than down (which sounds wrong, but is protocol for iced wings). Also, the size of that plane should have made it easy to glide and land elsewhere.
Perhaps there's a way to find out who your pilot is ahead of time so you can cancel your flight if you're not comfortable?
CH: Interesting...I don't know how much more comfortable that makes me - I think I felt better thinking that a pilot could do no wrong and that there were back-ups in place should a pilot do something incorrectly....and that any mishaps were at the fault of mechanical issues....human error is inevitable...it will happen at some point there is just no avoiding it. Just as the horrible Metro crash recently was blamed on a texting conducter....especially when people become comfortable with what they are doing because they've done it a million times, they start to be lax in their safety precautions and over the top checking and double checking of procedures....
I know one of my bosses at work will only fly on certain plane models, and she knows which ones are which and it takes a big role on deciding which flights she will take....so she obviously is looking for the mechanics of a plane and is more worried about the plane itself screwing up moreso than the pilot........but now I'm more worried about the pilot!
Like I said before - I think it's a control issue...just like I'm not big on being a passenger in someone else's car, I would much rather be the driver....I would rather learn how to fly a plane and do it myself. :)
Oh - and if I could choose my own pilot, it would probably be the Hudson River pilot guy. He's awesome. :)
JH: We can set some flight lessons up for you ;) Did you know that Joe's dad set up and opened a flight school right here in Torrance years ago? It has since been sold off, but I think he still has a hand in it.
CH: I didn't know that! How interesting...and I actually didn't know about Joe's family of pilots....is that how he got into the whole Torrance airport job (it was Torrance right?) that he held for awhile?
JH: His dad was a pilot in Vietnam, and continued his career in aviation after the war. He even got shot down in the jungle. Talk about scary! Aviation is definitely not Joe's thing though. He's not a fan of flying at all.