Over the years it has become alarming the increase in my anxiety, especially when traveling by car. A month before our trip to India, I went to a few hypnotherapist sessions in hopes of decreasing the amount of my daily anxiety. To my amazement, the sessions helped with more than just the car stress. After five sessions, I was able to recognize the onset of the anxiety before it became so overwhelming that I shut down. What saved me was learning a form of controlled breathing, inhale for a count of 4 and exhale for a count of 8.
Once we arrived in India I was surprised I reacted to the road chaos with spouts of laughter. It was the most unexpected reaction I could have imagined, but I rolled with it. As our good friend Anand drove the 10 hour journey from Hyderabad to the Visakhapatnam I couldn’t stop my random giggles. I kept thinking this was an Indian version of an old Nintendo favorite, Spy Hunter.
I recall seeing a tiny truck bed filled high with hundreds of crated eggs pass on the road and moments later Anand slammed on his breaks. My first thought was awesome he’s helping for me to get great capture. Little did I know, the actual reason for the abrupt stop was to avoid a collision with a 50lb sand bag laying in the middle of the road.
The streets were filled with all types of horns sounds that ranged in tone and pitch. It became a familiar sight seeing a Mercedes driving next to a cart pulled by two buffalos. The trucks were beautifully decorated with bright paintings and tassels hanging from the mirrors. Some vehicles also had the monkey god, Hanuman, painted or a figure affixed to the vehicle.
When we return to India I’ll take it to the next level and actually drive. What better way to conquer those fears.