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Thread: VERY nervous about an upcoming road trip!

  1. #1

    Default VERY nervous about an upcoming road trip!

    First off: If I start rambling, I apologize in advance. I'm just a little nervous right now and need some help.

    Ok, so I may be crazy for even agreeing to this but I did. I signed a contract for my band to play a slot at a large festival a couple of weeks from now in Arizona. The crazy part is that we live in Virginia and that's more than 2400 miles away.

    Now, even though our record has been heard in over 30 countries now, we're still not able to afford to fly out there meaning we will have to drive there. The only I reason I took this gig is because it's an important festival in our genre and is going to help us get to the bigger festivals and on tour with other bands because of the massive exposure.

    Still, I'm very nervous. We've been on trips before. The longest being about 14 hours away in Memphis and lasted about 4 days but the way this one is played out looks like we'll be gone for about a week. The four of us will be together at all times, sharing a car, hotel rooms etc. for a week straight.

    Why am I nervous you ask? Well, I have a few "issues" that may make traveling a little harder on me than the other three.

    Number 1- I'm legally blind. This means that while I am not 100% blind, I am about 95% blind. This means that I can't drive or really even look at any of the sights along the way and am concerned about the sheer boredom.

    Number 2- I have anxiety and anger issues both of which I diligently try to keep under control. I love my band mates dearly but I do feel much more comfortable and at ease alone because its the only time besides the stage that I feel in control. I'm going to be with these guys in the same room 24/7 for 7 whole days and I've got to keep it together somehow.

    Number 3- No diapers or teddy bear for a whole week. I know that sounds stupid but its going to be harder for me to deal with my anxiety and sleep at night with my bear but there is absolutely no way in hell I am getting caught with one and we'll all be sleeping in the same room. I try to avoid embarrassment at all costs because when someone embarrasses me I instantly go into a complete violent rage followed by crushing guilt, hurt feelings and a broken bone, guitar or something. And the diapers are definitely out the question because there's no real hiding them and I don't have the room anyway.
    And Number 4- This one's a little hard for me to admit and pardon me if it is TMI but I've never went No. 2 anywhere but my home. Ever. On every road trip I've been on (longest 4 days) I've become constipated. I don't think I can go a whole week like that. Again, sorry if that was TMI.

    Anyway, I can't back out because this is a chance that we have to take now or miss out because we're on the edge of doing something and I can't let my boys and especially myself down. I just don't know if I'm strong enough to not break down and lose it on the way.

  2. #2

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    I'll take these in order... but wow, being 95% blind is not something I would know how to handle exactly. I don't even know that I could. Having said that...

    (1) What normally entertains you? Music? Whatever it is, try to bring it along with you in some form.

    (2) Touring is very challenging on ANY band or performer, really. It is not uncommon for them to cut it short because it's just too much. Taking such a long trip is simply a hard thing to do, for anyone. I'm sorry you have additional challenges that make it even harder.

    (3) That doesn't sound stupid. Rather, it sounds like your band mates don't really know you well enough to accept you as you are. Not that it's an easy topic to broach or anything. The "instant violent rage" that results in broken bones and etc is a bit worrying, though... have you sought counseling about that?

    (4) Re #2... I am the same way, and I know lots of people who are also. At work, for example, I only use a handful of the bathrooms for that because I've acclimated to them. If I'm uncomfortable or in an unfamiliar place, I just can't. I know that's not exactly advice, but, this is actually a very common thing.

    Finally... I wish you the best of luck. It will surely be an adventure, one way or another, and I think in many ways that is most important.

  3. #3

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    I think you should consider bringing along the teddy bear. It's a lot more common than you'd think for non-AB people to sleep with stuffed animals. If your bandmates give you crap about it, tell them it helps with your anxiety, and if they still give you crap about it, then they're not very good friends.

  4. #4

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    This is really exciting! It should be a great adventure. Your anxieties are real but so are the good things. It's too bad you get so worked up so easily. I would expect some teasing if you brought a teddy bear but it would likely be fairly minor and short-lived.

    Do your best. I'd suggest taking a walk alone whenever you stop driving to decompress but you don't honestly need to go far. Go sit in a bathroom stall for a few minutes, even if you don't need to go if that's what it takes. I hope this goes well. It sounds like a neat opportunity.

  5. #5

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    Thanks guys. I'm very excited about the opportunity and will be making the best of it I can. I just worry a bit about staying calm because once we're out there, there's no turning back.

  6. #6

  7. #7

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    First of all, congratulations for the growing success of your band. I envy what you've been able to accomplish in spit of some challenging barriers. It sounds like an exciting time. I love music but I have absolutely no talent whatsoever.

    I've been trying to relate your concerns to some of the things I do in my work. I'm called upon several times throughout the year to organize public events and I stress about concepts, logistics and attendance. Even though I feel really excited and confident about the outcome, I always get stressed out as it draws closer, believing everything will fall apart and it will be the worst event ever and it will all be my fault. Eventually I just throw myself into it and the fears disappear as the work begins. And at the end of the process I'm always proud of how it turned out and the fact that I took it on in spite of the anxiety. The payoff for you and your band will be worth it.

    I can definitely see boredom setting in on a long road trip. I get restless in a car or train after two hours max. A little music can help and a good book makes it bearable. I'm not sure how you read, if you rely on braille. I have a tablet where I can adjust the size of the text to make it as large as I need it to be.

    I'm wondering if it would be possible to talk to your bandmates about your anxiety because there might be things causing them anxiety about it as well. Let them know why the trip can leave you feeling bored and see if you can come up with some word games or verbal games to pass the time. You could also have some friendly debates as long as you agree to stay away from heated issues. Instead of arguing about morals or religious beliefs, you can debate about whether strawberries are the best kind of berry (the answer is raspberries) or whether squirrels are cute or just plain annoying (I prefer chipmunks).

    Here's a link to some fun car games that can be played in the car by everyone:

    https://www.buzzfeed.com/fuelthejour...KY#.kgyrovA34L

    Also maybe taking a break at intervals just to get out and stretch and walk might be helpful in reducing stress and could be factored into the travel time

    Your bandmates probably know you well enough by now to know there is some anxiety and anger issues. Tell them what you need. If you want to be left alone with your own thoughts for awhile or if there is something bothering you, you need to communicate it to them. These issues could be considered a disability and everyone should accommodate someone with a disability to the extent it is reasonable and possible. In close quarters, it's important to keep the lines of communication open and respect each others limits during the time you're together.

    The diapers and teddy bear are a problem and I guess it depends on how much risk you are willing to take. If worse comes to worst, it's only a week and you will probably be so busy you won't even have time to think about it. If you wanted to bring a 'backup' the Depends Real Fit briefs look pretty much like regular underwear and you could probably pass them off as such with a long t-shirt. You could also try bringing a small plushie and take it with you and keep it in your suitcase. At least you'll know it's there and maybe you can get a 'little' time to yourself at some point on the trip and have the plushie when you are able to be alone. I have a little Scooby Doo plushie and Blue from Blue's Clues who have made trips with me occasionally

    As for the constipation, it's not unusual for that to happen. Up to 40 percent of travelers suffer from it. The attached link offers suggestions to keep regular during the trip,, such as getting food high in fiber, drinking lots of water to prevent dehydration, and scheduling bathroom breaks.

    https://health.clevelandclinic.org/2...ile-traveling/

    I understand your stress, but I am confident you will get through it and that you will come back from it with some wonderful stories and memories that you will treasure for the rest of your life. Good luck with it.

  8. #8

  9. #9

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    Thanks everyone. I'm feeling a bit better about things today. I've got 2 weeks to prepare myself for the trip so hopefully things will go smoothly.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by gnd567 View Post
    Thanks everyone. I'm feeling a bit better about things today. I've got 2 weeks to prepare myself for the trip so hopefully things will go smoothly.
    Just ran across this randomly and thought of your situation: https://www.reddit.com/r/AdviceAnima...wn_man_dammit/

    You're not alone.

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