Just Land the Plane!

I have suffered with motion sickness all of my life.

As a child and teenager, I discovered two things: 1) The Tilt-A-Whirl and most spinning amusement rides do not co-habitate well with a motion-challenged stomach, and 2) reading a book in the backseat of a car while on a family vacation does not end well for anyone.

As an adult, there have been additional lessons.

Lake Michigan and motor trolling for salmon in choppy waters is a big NO. A former husband sitting next to me, eating tuna and crackers, asking me what’s wrong as I turn green is not only a NO, it’s also mitigation for physical violence if I would have chosen that path.

I tried Latin dancing several years ago because it was free. When the twirling started, I stopped going.

I don’t mind airplane travel as long as there is no turbulence, stacking before landing, or unexpected bumpiness. Twice in my life, I prayed, “Just land the damn plane, God…please,” to which He did, but afterwards I seriously required ginger ale and time to sit motionless for an hour. When I went to see brother over Thanksgiving, the landing in D.C. was extremely bumpy. The wind was at fault. I thought a bottle of ginger ale and an easy car ride would take care of things; however, my brother does not drive like an 85 year old grandma. By the time we got to my brother’s place, after whipping around several corners, I thought I was going to have to use his bathroom inappropriately. But I held it together, thank goodness. How embarrassing that could have been!

Attending a laser light show at the Barlow Planetarium sounds pretty cool, right? Roommate Natasha thought so as she gave me five tickets for a birthday four or five years ago. We went with three friends, sat in a chair and waited for the overhead show to begin. When the emcee started to talk about how we may feel movement even though we’re sitting still, that would have been the first clue to get up and leave. But before I could make that determination, the laser light show started and guess what? The light show was all about roller coasters and amusement rides. Nooooooooo!!! Natasha, who also has her own version of motion sickness, looked at me with those “Oh crap!” eyes and then we both covered them. Our eyes. For most of the show. The other three weren’t bothered by the feeling of motion, so at least they enjoyed the lights.

In summation:

  • I never go on an amusement ride unless it’s a huge, slow-moving ferris wheel on Chicago’s Navy Pier.
  • I never go out on Lake Michigan, in a boat, in anything but calm water. This would be applicable to all of the Great Lakes and probably the ocean.
  • I have never been on a cruise and will not be on one before I die.
  • In the instance that I become famous, you will never see me on Dancing with the Stars.
  • I do not read books, scroll Facebook on my phone, knit, crochet, fill in newspaper crossword puzzles or anything else while riding in an automobile. I sit and look out the window. Or sleep.

I still fly. I have every intention of flying when the desire arises. It beats a much longer, do-nothing car ride to D.C.

Every time I fly, I will hope and pray (beg for mercy) that a liter of ginger ale or use of the barf bag is not a necessity, and that God and the pilot will land the plane smoothly, without incident…for my stomach’s sake.


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36 responses to Just Land the Plane!

  1. Dan Antion says:

    I am sorry motion effects you as it does. I live with a person effected like you. You probably would have acquitted her of any and all charges the day I talked her into going with me on “it’s like a baby roller coaster” ride. She said at one point, she wanted to jump out. I also tried taking her sailing – we no longer own a boat.

    When you fly, do you want the window seat, or doesn’t it matter? I know it wouldn’t help at 30,000 feet but maybe during landing…

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I prefer window or aisle seat when I fly, although neither matter if the motion sickness kicks in.

      I feel the Editor’s pain…or queasy stomach. I do miss the ability to go on some of the amusement rides that look like fun, but I can live without it as long as I have my bike planted firmly on ground that doesn’t whirl around.

      • Dan Antion says:

        Turbulence is something we just weren’t meant to deal with. Our bodies don’t move like that.

        I no longer go on any ride with multiple planes of motion. I’m OK with the Tilt-a-Whirl (we have a friend who calls it a Puke-A-Whirl), but the things that go around like a Ferris Wheel but where the cars spin in a different direction – nope – not doing that.

  2. Ally Bean says:

    Boy you and I are two peas in a pod! I could have written you list. Stay still, my friend. Be balanced.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I will try to be balanced at work today and the only movement will be to get my tea from the microwave, food from the fridge or a walk to the printer. No whoop-dee-doo’s for either of us, Ally.

  3. My sister-in-law has serious motion sickness and uses those patches when she flies or travels. She went on an Alaskan cruise once and almost lived on the upper deck day and night. A friend down here was riding with me to a luncheon and asked if she could sit in the front seat because she can’t handle the back seat. 🙂

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I also have a friend that does not like the back seat. That doesn’t seem to bother me unless I try reading or doing something.

      I always thought that if I did take a cruise, it would be in Alaska, because I assumed it would be calm waters in the fjords. It appears, though, that Alaska isn’t even safe. I’ll have to take a car…

  4. loisajay says:

    I have no desire nor intention to ever go on a cruise, and reading while riding in a car? Absolutely not. The mere thought of that is enough to make me sick. You have a lot of company here, Mary.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Sorry you suffer the same affliction, Lois. Perhaps the car thing is for the best. At least we are enjoying the countryside as it passes by rather than having our nose in s phone, book or otherwise.

  5. beth says:

    I have been a life-long sufferer as well and understand each and every word of your post. Thank you for the quote!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      You’re welcome, Beth. It’s nice to know I’m not alone, but I wish we could all be like those normal people who enjoy roller coasters and bumpy boat rides.

  6. Laurie says:

    Sorry your motion sickness put a damper on the laser show with your friends. I am not bothered by motion sickness but going on that Ferris wheel on Navy Pier? No way! I am scared of heights!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Sorry about the height thing, Laurie. The only time height would bother me is if someone expected me to bungee jump off a bridge or parachute out of an airplane. I would rather suffer the motion sickness than do either of those two things.

  7. John Holton says:

    DC tends to be a little bumpy, doesn’t it? Mary and I both prefer a long do-nothing car ride to a plane trip, actually…

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I actually love road trips, John, when I have the time. The last trip to D.C. was too short a time for a drive, but maybe when I retire. I could throw the bike in the back and hit some trails on the way there and back.

  8. J-Dub says:

    I got seasick on a midsize catamaran. I’m sure the same would happen on a cruise. Of course I’ve never been nor do I plan to go on one so I’ll never know.

  9. marianallen says:

    I feel your nausea, Sister. I have to ride in the front seat on any car ride or I get carsick. If we pass through barred light (as from tree trunks), I have to cover my eyes so that NO flashes creep in. Ugh.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Oh boy, Marian, that’s the pits! I didn’t know flashes of light could cause motion sickness. I hope that doesn’t happen too often for you.

      • marianallen says:

        We live in the country, so travel in the winter is always problematic in various ways. I just cover my eyes and say, “Tell me when it’s over!” lol

  10. parkermccoy says:

    I don’t think I have motion sickness but my anxiety takes over in most of those situations and I want no part of them. Haha. Hey, just because some people enjoy all those things doesn’t mean everyone has to do so. I wish you luck with the motion sickness, although it seems like you’ve adjusted quite well. You kick ass! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Joanne Sisco says:

    Oh poor Mary! You have my sympathy … especially when it comes to plane turbulence.

    Once upon a time, I was a roller coaster queen. I LOVED every and all midway rides. Then one day something changed, and now just reading your post and the mere suggestion of movement was enough to make me feel queasy.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Hmmm…it’s interesting that roller coaster motion changed for you in an instant. All I can say is good thing the forward motion of a bicycle bothers neither of us.

      • Joanne Sisco says:

        Come to think of it, it is interesting that bicycles don’t bother us. I wonder if it’s because they are slower moving. At any rate, I’m very grateful!

        The world changed for me when I was pregnant with son #2. My ‘morning’ sickness lasted the entire 9 months and it seemed that everything made me nauseous.
        I never fully recovered :/

      • bikerchick57 says:

        Oh boy, Joanne. That must have been awful. A neighbor’s daughter went through the same thing with both of her kids…terrible morning sickness and even hospitalized at one point. Thay has to be way worse than sn amusement ride.

  12. joey says:

    Pity you’ve experienced this all your whole life! I have vertigo now and so I suffer similarly, but maybe not as bad as you. But when I was young, nothing fazed me. Spelunking, parasailing, roller coasters, lighthouses, boats, mountain climbing. I can barely stand over a staircase now. LOL I’m so glad I was able to have those experiences, because I fear the vertigo, which has improved, will not end.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I was just talking to my brother and reminded him of the time I threw up in the back seat of the car while on vacation. All he could say was, “Yeah, I was pissed.” It was my laugh of the day because now I find it rather funny whether or not he does.

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