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I haven't posted on this discussion board yet, but I just wanted to quickly share my story.
Ten years ago I flew Sydney to LA and it was the worst experience of my life. I white-knuckled it the whole way there, then I couldn't enjoy my holiday because I was so freaked out about the plane trip home... which, incidentally, was equally as terrifying to me as the trip there. When I got back I was so relieved, and I swore I would never get on a plane again, and I didn't
Until I discovered in February that I had to fly Sydney to London in June.... really... such a terrifying idea. I came on the internet looking for help and found this fantastic website. I read through the resources and forum posts. I watched video after video of turbulence and take-offs. I learned ways of coping with anxiety on-board the plane.
As June approached I felt quite anxious that regardless of all that I had learned, I would have a complete panic attack or breakdown on the plane. Anticipatory anxiety BIG TIME! Well, on the actual day I felt surprisingly calm. This feeling continued all the way through security and boarding. When the engines geared up for take-off I thought I would completely freak out... but I didn't. The anxiety just didn't happen. When we landed at Heathrow airport I was relieved because a 21 hour flight in economy is a tad uncomfortable, but the actual plane trip was anticlimactic, I had worried over nothing. I didn't need to actually use any of the wonderful coping skills I had practised!
The trip back was equally as uneventful... no anxiety at all!
I wanted to thank you all for your contributions, and Captain Keith for such a wonderful website. I had hoped that I would have lessened anxiety, but to be completely cured was such an unexpected thrill! I feel like I have my life back!