Sunday, June 08, 2008


I found out today that I am afflicted, in the truest sense of that word, with a particular type of anxiety called "hodophobia," [HOE-doe-phobia] which is the "fear of traveling." And Jorge is now so accepting of my condition that he is "lovingly" calling me "Ho-do" for short.

Anyway, do I need to remind you of what I'm doing June 19? Hint: It involves leaving my bedroom.

Hodophobia is different from Pteromerhanophobia, which is not "fear of pterodactyls" but is instead the fear of flying. The diffference is, we hodophobes do not like traveling in any sense.

I'm not in love with flying, mainly because of motion sickness, but that can be fixed with medication, and I promise you, it will be. It will be. (If my seat mate only knew, he would be thanking God right now, because when I flew to Phoenix, I threw up.) But a general fear of traveling, I'm not so sure about that.

I have not been posting in detail about my stress level over this conference because I could just see you going, "O-kaaaaay ...." and X-ing me out forever due to my irrational nuttiness. For instance, in airports, my ears start buzzing and my vision blurs so that I have trouble reading anything, including pertinent information, which is sort of crucial to traveling. I feel paralyzed and dependent on everyone around me to lead me. And I'm making this trip alone.

After returning from Gatlinburg yesterday, I dreamed of the conference all night long. All. Night. Long.

I dreamed I was hanging out the back of a plane, which was not comfortable. (There wasn't room for me.) I dreamed I made the pilot angry. I dreamed I had lied about attending a conference and was sneakily trying to attend two conferences at once (sort of like the Brady Bunch episode where Peter tried to keep a date with two girls.) I dreamed I missed a flight. In short, I dreamed every bad thing you could dream about traveling, because, have I mentioned?, I'm a hodophobe.

Early this morning, Jorge talked me down off the ledge and away from cancelling everything. Here's the deal: Once I get to Charlotte (Thurs. eve.) I have no way to get to the hotel. There is no shuttle that night like there will be for the conference proper. I thought I was going to have to take a taxi. I do not know how to do this. I could not imagine calling, hailing, paying, tipping ... Apparently, I also have taxiphobia, which is not a real name but should be for fear of taxis.

So I started doing research on hodophobia, and I came across a set of 5 minute news videos where two doctors spoke to a news anchor about anxiety. One of the doctor's names, and I am not making this up, is Willy Wiener, which, if you find this unbelievable and want to verify, go here. I did not find Willy Wiener to be that helpful.

However, there is a site called Living with Anxiety that I found somewhat helpful. Here is a prayer I lifted from that site, which I hope is OK since I pointed you there:

Prayer for a Special Need Like Not Wanting to Take a Taxi (OK, I added that last part).

Lord Jesus, You have said, "Learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart." With confidence in Your loving heart which offers rest to weary souls, I come to You in this my time of special need. In Your unfailing love, read the prayer that is written on my heart, and grant the grace that I ask of You, in accordance with Your holy will. In Your name I pray. Amen.

Simple, but effective for me. When I am in an airport, I may not be able to even utter a prayer, but he can read the prayer that is written on my heart.

Later, I sat through the sermon, which was about living your life as an example to others, among other subtopics. Looking at me in my paralyzation, would anyone want to trust in the God I worship? I felt so ashamed that ultimately my fear revealed a lack of faith. If I believe (to cite one of many examples of God's power) that God parted the Red Sea, do I not believe he can get me from the Charlotte airport to Embassy Suites? Am I afraid He can't read a map? Speak southern? Find me if I get lost? Help me count money for a tip? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME???

God has worked out so many details for me to be able to do this conference--you wouldn't believe. I think I am supposed to go; I really do, but I think I'm under spiritual attack, too.

So I headed off to the grocery store. I turned on the radio only to hear Lysa TerKeurst speaking. I had to laugh. ["Ack! I can't get away from 'She Speaks!'"]

All through my grocery trip, I thought of the ordeal, turning it upside down and inside out, over and over. I started feeling so depressed and my self-esteem was plummeting.

When I got home, my husband stopped mowing the lawn to tell me that while I was gone, he arranged for a limo to pick me up at baggage and take me to the hotel. The driver will have a sign with my name on it, so there's no missing me. (I'll be the lady with kaleidescope eyes clutching her suitcase for dear life.) This company specializes in freaked out travelers. The fee and tip are paid in advance. If I cannot use the voucher offered by Proverbs 31 to get back to the airport, he will arrange a ride back. My husband loves me. My God loves me. I don't deserve the love or faithfulness of either, but there you have it.

In fact, I cannot explain people's general goodness toward me, except that God loves me through them. I am so humbled.

So now I've processed, to some degree, what has been eating at me for weeks and weeks and growing almost by the hour--I'm not kidding.

So do not X me out; God isn't through with me yet, as they say.

I can do this trip because with God (and the limo guy) all things are possible!

That's all the news from the land of Hodophobia.


Missy @ It's Almost Naptime said...

Oh, sweet Hodo, don't you know that confessing 'irrational nuttiness' to the blogosphere only makes one about 1000x more lovable?

You are gonna do great. And now, by courageously confessing it, you will have a couple hundred sweet ladies praying for you to do great. And I bet you have given some strength to many fellow hodos.

You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.


Susan said...

Dear Sweet Linda,

I SO needed to read this tonight. I am not a Hodophobe...but I AM the other word you wrote (too lazy to scroll back up right now)..the FEAR of FLYING Phobe! I've been stressing about my trip to Alaska for weeks. Mostly because I'm going to have to get on a prop plane to get over to Canada to get on my ship. Now my DH will be with me...but that makes me all the more nervous. And last night, those everything-that-could-possibly-go-wrong-and-then-some dreams must have been going around because I dreamed of our trip all night.

Your post hit me straight between the eyes. We DO need to have faith. We need to LIVE and LIVE WELL (as I blogged a couple of weeks ago). We need to be about the business of our Heavenly Father.

I think it's so sweet that your husband arranged the limo driver for you. Trust me, this will be the easiest way you've ever traveled. But, you MAY want to have a couple of dollars in your hand to give him anyway regardless of a prepaid tip. Sometimes, especially if they are not originally from the US, they don't quite get this part.

I'm praying for you, dear friend. And I can't wait to read about the blessing that this conference is for you and for those you touch.



annie's eyes said...

Dear Hodophina,
Check out Peanuts today--written just for anxiety-ridden people like you and I. You will be so fine once you get there and have no regrets. That Jorge is one special guy. A limo no less--you're arriving in stype.
Love you, Annette

Kelly @ Love Well said...

God loves you, Hodo. Trust Him.

And you might want to give that Jorge a kiss. He's a keeper.

Maybe you should tell him you're afraid of flying coach?

skoots1mom said...

I get anxious in the dentist's I rely on memorized scriptures...repeating them over and over...sometimes making a song out of them in my head.
"I can do all things THRU Jesus Christ who strengthens me"
He always comes to the rescue!

I know this can sound crazy but I do this also when I lose my car keys or something I've laid down and then can't find it...I have a quick talk with JC and repeat some of his promises and remind Him that I know HE knows where "it" is...and sure enough, in a few seconds or sometimes minutes, I'll find it! Truly, He oversees our BIG things and our LITTLE things...He's cool that way!

He doesn't want you to be anxious, rest knowing He knows how you feel and give the yoke to Him...then get busy praising Him, 'cause He'll be showing you his peace before you know it!!

HisPrincess said...

Oh Linda,
I would never X you out! I so love coming to your blog and I have to say it's heartening for someone such as me to see that everyone doesn't have it all together. I think I'm the only one most of the time.

Teri said...

Hey Lidna,

First of all....GO JORGE-GO JORGE-GO JORGE!!!!!!

Last month I had to fly to Colorado and not only did I have to do this on standby, but I also had to travel with a 70 year old woman who hasn't flown since before 9/11. I had to hold it together to get her through security and be the sane one so she wouldn't freak out. (I have never been a sane traveler. The first time we drove to Colorado I was literally crying somewhere in Iowa, begging Paul to turn around and take us home.) I was traveling with someone...but since it was standby, I did have to sit by myself. Linda, I turned a corner this last trip. Seriously, I feel like I am a different girl when it comes to travel. For instance, we are leaving today to go to Virginia...Paul has a business trip and I asked him if I could go with him in order to meet a fellow blogger to hang out for the day tomorrow. I am willing to drive all the way to Virginia to spend time with someone I have never met, just to turn around and drive home the very next day... I do believe I have been set free!
I say this to encourage you Linda! I truly understand the anxiety, I have lived it. I am telling you today, there is hope. God did this thing...He can do it in you too!

I can't wait to pray...and see His faithfulness to you!

Thank you for sharing!

Fiddledeedee (It Coulda' Been Worse) said...

You just cannot even imagine how much alike we are. I've nearly cancelled everything, about 7 times. Your Jorge is a keeper.

Robin said...

Oh Linda - I so feel your pain. I suffer more from the fear of flying though. Hey - I'm arriving at the airport Thursday at 4:30 and I have to take a taxi too. If you are arriving around that time maybe we could go together? Even though I'm from Idaho and I'm not accustomed to flagging taxi's either - I think I can do it. Just let me know!

Michelle said...

No Xing out for honesty. Lysa said it best "...leave behind any dobts or fears that Satan may have whispered in your ear in an attempt to keep you from this life-changing weekend." I look forward to meeting you and telling you in person CONGRATULATIONS for having the courage to follow God's call. Believe me, I understand the frustration of fear battling faith!

Miscellaneous From Missy said...

Go, Hodo! Aren't Jorge and God wonderful?!

Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories said...

I prayed for you today as I cleaned my shower. :) You're gonna do just fine. And your hubby? Precious!

Debbie said...

I'm thinking as I'm reading "what can I suggest that might help at the airport". Clearly Jorge was way, way ahead of me. Way to go Jorge! Or in the words appropriate for such a knight in shining armour, "good form".

On another note, I thought that sermon was directed at me....

Funny how that works.

Cyndy said...

I AM NOT X-ing you are too precious! IAM praying for you though!

Phil 4:6-7!
Love, Cyndy

Anonymous said...

I'll still take you over Bambi any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

Mocha with Linda said...

Jorge rocks. What a sweetheart.

She Freaks? No way! Not with her God, her husband, and a bevy of bloggers behind her cheering her on!

In the book Skid I read & reviewed, a woman took a pot-bellied pig with her on the plane because of her issues with flying.

Stick with the limo...

Darnelle said...

Hodo Honey,

Here's the thing. Those of us who already love you, just have the urge to pray for your trip now that you've shared (as we're suddenly reminded of some aspect of our OWN goofiness).

Secondly, since I am not able to somehow make my way to "She Speaks" this year, (I have stopped crying though) I was pretty much counting on YOU to have twice as much fun/success as you had planned. Half for you - half for me.
Probably should have mentioned that, before now.

I am glad, though, that you're feeling better and I'm glad that you have such a sweet, smart husband and I'm thankful for limo guys and the devil is stupid.

PJ said...

I'm with Kelly. Tell Jorge that you're afraid of the hoi polloi in coach. You never know what you could catch back there with the bourgeois!

Don't let the Hillbillies in Gatlinburg scare you off. Charlotte is a much more cultured place!!!

Your Hillbilly friend,

Marina said...

Linda, we are soooo,much alike in these area I am a Hodophobia I do all the what if's I can think of and even make myself sick ,but the Lord one day spoke to me and said everytime those thought come into your head say to your self" it's no big deal I will be ok I am a little scared but I will be fine " self talk "God is with me he won't let anything happen to me so stop what if"s right now " and it has work everytime I also take prise and worship CD's with me and that helps.. you will be ok you are in my prayers and ,if God can do it for me He will do it for you I,marina

Carol said...

I wish there were some way I could get to NC via Indiana so I could travel with you. I would be so happy to do that. But you have Someone even better than me - you have Jesus and Jorge. Can't wait to meet you!
(Throws Like a Girl)

Carol said...

You are cracking me up. I do NOT like to fly either. Luckily, I get to drive to She Speaks. But last fall I flew from ATL to Sante Fe to go to the Glorieta Writer's Conference. Let me tell you it was a God thing. I was SO out of my comfort zone. But He brought me through. That and Amy (Signs, Miracles, and Wonders) held my hand. ;) I will be praying for you!

Susanne said...

Never x-ing you out. How sweet of Jorge to do that for you. I think he likes you! ;v)

Praying your flight is filled with ease and that God's peace goes with you.

Barbara H. said...

From a fellow hodophobe, I can empathize. My body sometimes doesn't respond to my mind's reminding it that the Lord has everything in control and everything will be ok. The prayer and the sermon you mentioned were very helpful to me.

You have a very sweet and thoughtful husband!

Lelia Chealey said...

What a gem of a husband you have!! God is so good and I believe He has entrusted you with too much writing talent to not get you there safe and sound.
Can you imagine the nerves Jesus' stomach went through walking up to Calvary? Okay, much different, but still a trip He didn't want to take, but out of obedience to His Father He did.
You can do this my friend & I'll be praying for you.
Love ya,

MoodyBlue said...

You want to know something funny...I'm in the travel industry and I do not like traveling. LOL!

People go "WHATTTTT???"

Anonymous said...

I am also a Hodophobic 10 years now.Unfortunately i fear any sort of travel away from home and i am only 26 y.o. .This has made my life misserable and depressing to the point of wishing i was dead rather than live. However i am not that strong to commit suicide as i also do not want to hurt my family and friends suffering a loss because of me.
Thanks though for your sharing and u did give me a shred of hope. I wish the best for u