Detangling anticipation from anxiety

I leave for Haiti tomorrow. I am not panicking about it. However, I am conscious of that emotion trying to raise it's ugly head.  But it's really going to be okay. That has quickly become my life mantra: It's going to be okay.

I was talking with my friend Amy today at our church's 7th annual soup off (which is amazing btw) about how I don't like being the type of person who only appreciates experiences in retrospect. That's part of the anxiety survival mode I think. I keep my head down and push through, fight through the anxiety related stomach issues and wait for things to be over so I can go home and sit on the couch with my cat and boyfriend. That's not who I want to be. (Well, minus that last part. I will always love that).

With my job, I have the opportunity to do some really cool things and I really dislike that my anxiety keeps me from fully enjoying those perks. (Especially since then they really don't feel like perks at all. Then I sound like the worst person ever, complaining about getting to go on these adventures as part of my job). Ugh.

I keep trying to remind myself of our schedule during the trip. The whole trip is food related, which is maybe my favorite topic. It should be really interesting. It's just all this anticipation as I wait to go tomorrow.  Anticipation is often an emotion that I don't know how to detangle from anxiety. They are closely related but somehow I have warped them into the same experience. (It also makes me so oddly emotional about packing; as if I wasn't coming home in 9 days).

So in the spirt of trying to detangle anticipation from anxiety, here are some things I am looking forward to this coming week in Haiti.

1. My colleague/friend, Tina, and her husband are also going on this trip. This is a very calming fact in my life right now. Tina is so sensible and I am often not. I am happy to have her with me, especially when I need a break from "wearing my MCC hat" constantly.

2. My friend Amy lent me some of her fun summer dresses and I am pumped to wear them on the trip.

3. We're going to see cool things like coffee roasting and chocolate making. I'm pretty excited about that

4. We are also going to the beach one afternoon. I am really looking forward to (even if that does mean I have to go to the beach with constituents)

5. I am already looking forward to (hopefully) grabbing a giant coffee at Starbucks tomorrow at ORD. (Our flight leaves Wichita at 5:45 in the morning. This is my only beacon of hope in the amount of early morning airport madness. Gross. but yay coffee!

There we go. And here I go. Off on another adventure. One which I hope to enjoy when I am actually there, not just after the fact.