I should work in airplanes every day. It is amazing how focused one can be when the real goal is not to finish work but to distract from the bumps and weird noises of a plane hurtling through the air at speeds almost faster than Superman. Not to mention the added benefit of not needing to appear rude when you ignore your seat mate by pointing to the headphones in your ears, shrug your shoulders apologetically and then stare intently at the screen of your computer.
In my attempt to calm my I-hate-flying jitters, I worked on the first leg of my flight this morning. Only an hour to really work, and yet I accomplished more than I do in half a day at my home office. The final preparations are finished for my MobileBeat 2010 presentation, and now I can breathe a sigh of relief.
But believe me, I’ll find something else to work on when I board the next plane, because the focus really did help calm the what was that? did the wing just fall off? do I smell smoke? was that bump normal? thoughts that invade my mind every time I fly.
I used to like to fly. I used to love to fly. Taking off was my favorite – the screaming of the engines as their force pushed me back in my seat. It was the best feeling of all. I don’t think it’s so much that I didn’t have anything to live for that I didn’t fear flying, because I did. I had everything to live for. I just didn’t have any pressing reasons to not die.
I know that sounds warped, but being a mother and now running a company has changed all that. I can’t afford to head to the other side right now. I have far too much to do, far too many human beings that I promised to do the very best I could to get into adulthood in one piece, and checking out early is just not an option. And yes, I know the statistics and know that I should have even more trepidation when I drive, but you know, my vehicle does not scream like that when I drive to the end of the cul-de-sac and the sides don’t rattle and shake as if they’ll fall off every time I get on the freeway. Somehow the lack of physical reminders that I am inside of a hurtling piece of metal leads me to complacency in my own vehicle.
And so I live with my I-hate-to-fly emotions, suck it up and find work to do to distract the crazy lady inside. And I’ve found it such a productive activity that I’m thinking of getting an old fuselage to put in the side yard as my new office. I’m sure the neighbors won’t mind.