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Panic on the Slopes

We went skiing over the weekend. We went back up to Plattekill Mountain in Upstate New York. We hired the same instructor we had last time to guide us down the green slopes. Once you graduate the bunny hill the next step is the green slope. We were all pumped to try it out. 


This was not our first time on a chair lift.. but this was a lot longer and higher than the one I had been on before. Then I remembered some celebrity recently having their son falling off the chair lift and breaking their arm or leg.. 


The dismount was smooth.. last year, the last chair lift I had been on had a steeper dismount, D had ended up crashing into me and I had bent my knee in an odd angle.. the knee still hurts sometimes. So this was great.. a good start. The kids zoomed down the slope, fearless (so proud of them), the instructor had to remind them to slow down and wait for us. M was a little rusty on his turns.. the instructor commented on how well I was doing, better turns then the three boys, such great control. I am not a sporty person. I beamed at the compliment. But then I came to our first turn, I could see the over hang and I recalled someone else dying on the slopes after a head injury.. Natasha Richardson. And panic took over me. 

A couple of weeks ago a guy we knew.. not a friend per se, a couple of years older than me died in the Pcoconos. It wasn't a ski injury, he had a heart attack but all I could think of was his kids. I kept skiing.. it was a long trail.. took us over 20 minutes to get though.. our instructor could tell I was nervous. He was great.. 'You did it!' he said. The first time isn't always easy, I took a deep breath and we went up the chair lift again. 

The second time around the instructor stayed closer to me, the boys sped ahead. This time my panic was rising.. I lost all self confidence. I was on the verge of tears. I fell.. and then I fell again.. I think I fell five.. probably six more time. Our instructor encouraging.. soothing. I was on the verge of crying, I just couldn't do it here, in front of him, on a freaking mountain. I saw M at the foot of the mountain and started to bawl. Pretty sure I freaked the kids out too. We talked about it later that day. Not sure if they understood the complexity of it but they understood.

I sat out for the next round... but I couldn't let fear win. I wanted to give up. Not the sport for me, I could say.

When we were leaving there was an ambulance outside. Somebody got injured. What if it had been me. And I know that kind of thinking doesn't make sense.. people die everyday.. car accidents, planes crashes, walking down the street. 

We came back the next day and I got back on that chair lift. 


Went down the slope three more times but I was still frightened. No more crying... lots of deep breathing. I'm not going to be the mom who sits in the lodge while my family skis. And while there is nothing wrong with that.. I just don't want to be that person. 

By the time I hit the slopes for the fourth time I had lost the confidence again.. every time I picked up a bit of speed my brain was screaming at me.. I fell and tumbled twice. I was done. There was an ambulance outside again when we were leaving. 

We have tickets booked for President's Day weekend as well.. I'm not sure how it's going to go. I'm not ready to throw in the towel just yet. I need my brain to shut up. Any tips on how to do that? 

We are back home now.. we have had almost 2 feet of snow and it's still coming down. Thankfully the schools called it a snow day.. not even virtual school. Phew.

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27 comments:

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I've never been downhill skiing so I have no advice to give. I'm sure it must be an extremely hard sport to learn and it would scare me too. Yet lots of people do manage to get quite proficient at it, so it must be doable.

Jennifer said...

Looks like you had fun!!

Jennifer
Curated By Jennifer

Billie Jo said...

Oh, my friend, I am sorry that happened.
I am no stranger to panic attacks. Mine involve health anxiety, and I recently found an amazing app to help. It is called DARE. It is wonderful. Take a look. And...I received the photos I ordered from you! THEY ARE BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!

Madison LOVES them! She showed me each building and told me about what it was and how she and Nicolas would walk there from their apartment. She and Nicolas both are thrilled! You are amazing!

Heather{Our Life In a Click} said...

You're doing really well facing your fears and the more you do it, the easier it should get. Maybe do some meditating before you go next time and visualize smooth runs? We have a ton of snow today too. I'm glad they're giving snow days for virtual learners. That makes me happy!

Laura B said...

I've never been skiing, but I think I would have fears of falling, too. I think the fact that you keep trying is so courageous!

Sparkles and Lattes said...

Way to go for getting back on the slopes again and the ski lift. It is hard to do once you get panicked and nervous.

Polyester Princess said...

I went skiing a couple of times while on school trips back in the day, but unfortunately clumsy me never graduated the bunny hill :-)
Well done on persevering and being willing to give it another chance, Hena! xxx

Red Rose Alley said...

Oh, you braved it out, that is something to be said. We all get scared, and I was scared driving on the crowded freeways and going up the mountains to the unknown, but I did it as well. Angels are watching over us all the time. But I understand your fears, especially when this is something that you didn't have to do, just wanted to do. But you did it! And your family must be so happy. And I'm sure you'll do it again. Just cause that's who you are. BRAVE YOU! Maybe it will help if you tell yourself that this isn't something you have to do, it's just something you want to, and you might be more relaxed in your thinking. : )

~Sheri

Elephant's Child said...

Huge congratulations on wrestling with your fear.
The one and only time I went skiing I rapidly discovered that I was faster on my face than I was on my feet. I had some spectacular falls and bruises - but thankfully no worse than that.
I hope your next weekend on the slopes goes much better for you.

Kelly said...

It sounds like you're okay for the first couple of rounds before you lose confidence. Maybe you should just stop sooner? That way you'd still be joining in, but just not overdoing it. It's easy to let our imaginations run away with us, so that's nothing to be ashamed of.

Carrie @ Curly Crafty Mom said...

I have a fear of heights, so I am sure I would be a mess, too. But, I think it is great you kept trying and faced that fear. And, it sounds like the boys really enjoyed it.

Carrie
curlycraftymom.com

Jodie's Touch of Style said...

I'm so impressed that you kept at it, Hena. It's hard when your brain gets crazy that way.
XOXO
jodie
www.jtouchofstyle.com

Suzanne @ The Bookish Libra said...

I'm absolutely terrified to ski so I very much relate to your experience and am so impressed at how you kept at it and worked on conquering your fears.

Veronica Lee said...

Maybe I am a wimp but I would be perfectly okay having a hot cup of macchiato in the comfort of a warm cafe while my family hits the slopes!

Haha, I rather go snowtubing!

Hats off to you though!

Rach said...

I probably would have reacted the same as you. I've only skied once and it was my first time and stayed at the bunny slope. Even that felt a lot for me!

www.rdsobsessions.com

karen said...

I meditate twice daily to an app (Insight timer-lots of free stuff on there - there are lots of meditations on anxiety)(I have more tips if you want me to email you, let me know). I ADMIRE your tenacity!! Even though you are petrified, the lessons you are teaching your kids by your behavior and your repeated attempts to face fear are extraordinary. I think you should be proud of yourself and your accomplishment. If I was there in real life I'd hug you :) :)

Kathrine Eldridge said...

So glad you soldiering on my friend. Feel the fear and do it anyway. You are such an amazing role model for your kids.

https://www.kathrineeldridge.com

Emmylou said...

Hena, as the others have said, you should be proud of not giving up. (((HUGS)))) I can totally relate and honestly, I wouldn't have bothered to attempt again. You are brave, girl! And it's good that the kids saw that their mommy is human too and has her own fears:)

ALLIE NYC said...

Ah yes skiing can be a little scary. I hope your knee is better now. And I am sure you guys will continue to go!

Allie of
www.allienyc.com

Rowena @ rolala loves said...

It's tough when you lose confidence like that but maybe you can try to concentrate more on being more in the moment with your family instead of letting your mind wander to the worst that can happen.

Debbie said...

oh man, i feel your pain and have no words of wisdom for you. i fell off my bike so many times last summer, my balance has gotten so much worse but each time i fell, i got back up and on to the bike. i know exactly what you are saying...about the kind of mom you want to be. i think you should keep trying, is it ok to go back to the bunny hill and maybe regain your confidence there???

we only got 4" of snow and we are only a little bit south of you. what a difference 1/2 hour makes!!!

Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer said...

I am glad you didn't give up. I was fearless until I has children, loved bloody, terrifying horror movies and then worried about all the what ifs. I even forced my husband to have wills done when we flew and left our children for the first time. Be cautious, but keep trying.

Evi Erlinda said...

Awesome!
The boys look happy, Mommy has no fear anymore :)

Doused in Pink | Chicago Style Blog said...

I haven't skied in years and probably would feel the same way initially. I love that you are facing your fears and keeping up with it! Keep trying! You'll get your confidence back!

Jill - Doused in Pink

R's Rue said...

Great job.

Christina said...

I learned to ski when I was about three, maybe younger! But I haven't skied since I move to Britain in 1999 and the thought of doing it again is quite scary, I am so much more breakable now.... I am so impressed that you take up this sport now with your family! I don't have any advice other than maybe try to distract yourself when you feel the panic rushing in, maybe by focusing on the beautiful landscape around you. With practice, the panic may lessen. Or maybe don't look down the hill, but focus on the next 5 to 10 metres or so. You don't give up easily, I can see how determined you are to not let your fear win. You are a star!

Stefanie said...

Oh wow, what a visit. I'm sorry you got freaked out. I love your determination and resilience.

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