I have always spent way too much time in my head. I’ve been this way ever since I was little. My favorite childhood memories are of daydreaming, of being imaginative and playful. My favorite childhood memories aren’t memories at all—they’re of the fantasies I formed in my head. Two years ago when I sat down to write the story of my life, my opening lines were: “I have spent most my life in my thoughts”. Because it’s true.
There are consequences to being too dreamy.
Practical consequences. Hit-you-right-in-your-face consequences. Like how I am always running late, because when I put makeup on in the morning I zone out and think about all the things I want to come to pass. And when I look at the time I should have already left 10 minutes before, but I haven’t even put my mascara on.
The worst is when something emotionally taxing, or distressing occurs. I start to forget shit. Important shit. Like things for work, which results in financial consequences. Or I forget to pay bills on time or reply to emails. Or I forget my flight from Stockholm to Paris the day before I have to go back to work. Shit like that. You know, shit that matters.
I've come to accept this part of who I am.
View of Gothenburg at night--one of two cities I visited in Sweden.
So after checking out of the immaculate Stockholm hostel, finally glancing at my phone just for kicks, to see that my flight had arrived in Paris—because it was scheduled to leave at 6AM that day—it didn’t surprise me much. I was eager to grab a cinnamon latte at Espresso House, but instead learned that I had missed my flight. Shit, I muttered under my breath and walked outside to call AirFrance, simultaneously sucking on a vape pen to cool down my nerves.
Coffee, nicotine, and a bit of nonchalant stress. Alas, a perfect European breakfast.
What I did the night before I missed my flight was down a cocktail straight from ice blocks courtesy of ICEBAR Stockholm. The vodka didn't contribute to me missing my flight... that was 100% all me.
Despite being quite neurotic, there are certain things that don’t freak me out. Missing a flight. Getting lost in the jungles of a remote island. Death. Dying. Surprisingly, I’m quite calm in all of those scenarios (yes I actually did get lost in deserted Cambodian brush one time). Watching my sister die of cancer four years ago really put things in perspective. Big things don’t phase me. A boyfriend’s grandma dying, a student’s friend collapsing of heart attack, a student’s family member getting deported, a friend ending a longterm relationship. They don’t phase me. I’m ready for them. Even my own death, I am no longer scared of. In fact, I embrace it because I accept that it’s a part of life.
Because without the possibility of death, I could never truly be alive.
If I weren't mortal, how would I enjoy living? How could I take pleasure in the breath that fills my lungs if I couldn't quantify the number? If I didn't know that those too, would one day end?
It’s the little things that get me. Getting lost in Paris with a faulty phone location tag (once again, I didn’t leave on time because I'm unable to track time in my head), losing things, having a cell phone stolen or broken, catching the bus on time, replying to a confrontative email. Those things freak me out. But missing a flight out of Sweden? Nah.
Because that's the thing about living life in my head--I've imagined all the possibilities and put them into perspective.
I cannot go back in time to undo my faux pas. I cannot control the past, or the future. I can only control my response. The only thing I can do, is fix it, with 200 euros. And that my friends, is just money. I can beat myself up about making a mistake and costing myself time and resources, or I can laugh at how silly me forgot her flight was at the crack of dawn and got stuck in Stockholm for one more night.
Who wouldn't want to be stuck here for one more day? View from the Riksbron bridge.
Money is nothing; time, health, experiences, friendships and love are all that matter in this world.
I learned that the hard way. After losing people I couldn’t get back. And once you go through that, well there’s really nothing that can phase you. There’s really nothing that can phase or surprise me. Even if I’m stuck in my head.