A weekend away.
This weekend we stayed at the Hilton Fallsview Hotel in Niagara Falls, sans toddler, and prepared for a relaxing time away from home.
My husband booked all the arrangements for the two of us in a kind attempt to take away some of the stress that I have been experiencing.
Despite my best efforts, my anxiety was at such a high level that I ended up blacking out in the elevator as we headed up to our hotel room.
My husband caught me just as I began to topple into the elevator crowd, and my world went dark and somehow, I remained semi-conscious.
I sat in the hallway drenched in a cold sweat until he convinced me that we had to try again, because I probably shouldn’t walk up forty-flights.
Especially not with being pregnant, and especially not after having almost lost consciousness.
Being up in a high-rise in a section called The North Tower on the twentieth anniversary of the Sept. 11th attacks was oddly disconcerting.
It made me hyper-focus on all the people who lost their lives that day, and it remains a day I remember vividly from my youth.
I still recall the shock, silence and fear.
The parallels had me feeling especially overwhelmed and intertwined with history.
All I could think of were the lives lost and the fear those people and their families endured.
My husband tried his best to make sure I was comfortable and having a good time, and I was.
We rode the Niagara SkyWheel, and I really wanted to ride it in hopes of taking some great photos of the city, attractions and falls.
But then the intrusive thoughts came.
Thoughts of human error during maintenance, accidents, terrorism, natural disaster, etc.
The work I have done on my mental health has been nearly obliterated since this pregnancy began, and it is suffocating most days.
I take things day by day and accept that it’s mostly hormonal, but it is still hard to process.
Breathing through the fear, we rode the SkyWheel and I was happy to plant my feet securely on the ground afterwards.
My knees were still shaking when it was over, and I told my husband that if our daughter ever wanted to ride it, he would have to take her.
Never again for me, thanks.
Then, we returned to the hotel with plans to visit the casino, which did not end up happening.
My body gave out just as we made it to the 16th floor. Our room was on the 44th.
We cancelled our dining plans in lieu of take-out because I was still fuzzy from the experience.
Instead of roaming the casino, my husband walked to Zappi’s to pick up a veggie pizza.
At least the pizza was delicious, which made a bad situation better, and I was thankful.
I enjoyed a relaxing bath in the jacuzzi tub, complete with an unobstructed view of the falls, and got some much needed rest.
We ended up walking around later on, and though it was still very crowded, we avoided the popular spots and got some frozen yogurt to-go.
The night ended with watching a documentary on the terrorist attacks from two decades ago, and times sure have changed since then.
Or have they? Well, our technology has.
With so much on repeat, I dare to argue that humans haven’t changed all that much.
There is still an ongoing war, division, racism and hate, and among everything else, there is a global pandemic facing us for yet another year.
While our generation was raised with a sense of hope that we were to be the change and drive our world forward, it begs me to ask the question:
Is our generation driving any change?
What are we doing as we become parents of the next generation; do we expect them to be the change as we grow old and pass the buck?
Are we just feeding into the same cycles that kept our parents similarly imprisoned?
Our politicians have grown younger and more social media savvy, but their platforms seem to have remained largely the same.
More taxes, more promises, more lies, and a lot of false hope. Same old, same old.
They continue to target the younger, less informed youth in hopes of earning a ballot through naivety. How could they know?
We can see right through this façade, especially because we were those naïve youth.
It is important to vote, but it is much more important to be informed. Look at our history.
Look at the cycles, the repetition, the same promises, the same deflecting on why those promises were never acted upon.
We are in need of a change bigger than choosing between the lesser evils can offer us at this point.
Our choices impact our future, and if history has shown us anything, it is that we owe it to ourselves to know better and to do better.
When will we wake up to better solutions?
When will we stop oscillating back and forth between parties that continue to drive us into national debt and sustain division?
One day at a time, I suppose.
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