I’m feeling cacky today and am praying for the rain to wash away some allergy-inducing pollen (a big sorry to the sun-worshippers). I haven’t been sleeping well, so this has given my crazy mind the chance to come up with all sorts of scary abseil-related scenarios, dreams and nightmares (I think it may be known in counselling circles as ‘catastrophizing’):
1. Will climb over bridge and be unable to step off edge (a la school outward bound scenario, when I went rock climbing and half way up refused to move either up or down – don’t ask why I even went on this trip, as I’m too embarrassed to answer). Will end up on North East news.
2. Will get giggles and, presumably, hysterical laughter is not a friend to someone trying to control a descent. My mind will return to telephone incident with my sister: we were both watching YouTube video of Tyne Bridge abseils (me in Newcastle, her in Sheffield). She says, “OH MY GOD!” in a shocked voice. Me, having taken my eye off screen, thinks someone has fallen to their doom. She says, after a huge dramatic pause, “Her SHOE fell off!” I have now got a pair of shoes with elastic laces, that should neither fall off, nor get caught in the ropey-contraption. May still get hysterical, though – shoes are not miracle workers.
3. Will have a wardrobe malfunction – we know I’ve experienced this before (Borders, Gateshead). The latest fear is the harness sliding down and me mooning the poor people gathered below – if they’ve gone to the trouble of turning up, surely they don’t deserve that. Nobody deserves that. Or, similarly, that the harness rides up in a very unpleasant and painful manner – surely that can’t be good, and I’ll bet it’s only me that voices this one (but they’ll all be thinking it…)
4. I end up upside down and slide out of the harness – is this even possible? I don’t know, but it’s wangled its way into my mind.
5. The aforementioned ropey-contraption gets stuck and I have to be lowered or rescued (a friend, who for the purposes of this Blog will remain nameless had a similar dream, but was rescued by several sexy men – why couldn’t I have that dream instead?)
6. I faint and have to be rescued.
7. Rope fails. Bridge, which has stood for years, fails.
8. Bad weather – sudden strong winds blow us, pendulum-like, under the bridge. Or worse, sudden strong winds blow us over the bridge (like the bad children used to do with the swings, so that we couldn’t play on them when we were little).
9. Half way down, I’ll need the loo (a recurring fear – remember the various radio interviews?)
10. My biggest fear (except for any involving rope/bridge failure or death/pain scenarios) is that I’ll be too ill to go ahead. Regardless of the precautions I take, the unpredictability that is ME/CFS means I never know for sure, what I will or won’t be able to do. Still, fingers crossed.