We spent the past weekend in the mountains with some family that we rarely get to see. It was mostly wonderful and amazing with a little bit of ski-induced panic attack terror thrown in. But mostly wonderful.
Let’s talk about the skiing first, shall we? Get it out of the way.
AWFUL. Terrifying. Let me briefly introduce you to my neuroses: I’m very anxious, particularly in crowds, particularly when I am learning something new (and therefore out of my element), when people are waiting behind me in a high pressure situation (like a ski lift, for example), being out of control, going fast, running into people, people running into me, gross old men barking orders at me, and falling on my ass. All of those things happened. As far as the Jenn anxiety pyramid goes, we were just missing some spiders and bees and public speaking. Even without those things, there was some hyperventilating and some tears and quite a few beers later.
Things I Hated About My Ski Instructor (or Ways to Make Me Dislike You Immediately):
1. A constant stream of spittle foaming at his mouth. Gross.
2. Quickly showing us the gist of using a ski lift and then jumping on, leaving me to figure it out by myself with a 7-year-old and a crowd of people waiting in line behind me.
3. Constantly yelling at me to “RELAX!!” (Yep, that’ll do it).
4. Calling me a liar when I said it hurt when I fell. (I know it’s snow. But I hate snow. And maybe I have avian bone syndrome – you don’t know me.)
5. More spittle. Just making a bad situation worse.
6. Screaming at Ellyn to “LET HIM DO THE TEACHING” when she tried to show me a different way to stop, because “making the pizza” was clearly not working for me. She could see that I was freaking out, and was just trying to help me, bless her heart. He either didn’t see my meltdown, or chose to ignore it.
7. Not giving me a shred of positive reinforcement until I said I quit. Then, apparently, I was doing a great job and he was “disappointed.”
This lasted about 90 minutes before I called it a day. As a point of pride, I will say that after the first time down the hill and back up the ski lift, I was so, so done. But – I did it one more time for the kids. For the kids! It’s hard to be a wuss when two tiny people are already halfway down the mountain yelling “Come on, Jenn!!” I like to think I was a model of perseverance and facing your fears, even though I only did it one more time. It was still one more time than I felt comfortable with. So after my second time off the lift (which I aced, by the way – glided right off and kept my balance), I responded to Ellyn’s “Need a beer?” with a resounding HELL YES. Then I skied myself right back into the lodge and planted myself in front of the fire. The rest of my time was spent drinking Mt. Hood brews in the cozy lodge and playing board games with the kiddos and getting my fill of much-needed girl talk and eating myself silly.
My little half brother and sister in law (E is 10 and O is 7) are just the best. Super smart, fearless, and adorable (you’ll just have to take my word – I’m not posting photos of them because they’re not mine).
They had a blast learning to ski, playing Clue and Pictionary with the adults, showing us their video games, and eating junk food. Little O got so overzealous about her cheesy nachos one night that she made herself sick – she just might be my spirit animal. That’s what vacations are for, amiright?
It was a great time, and I hope it’s not another year and a half before we get to hang out with them again. Although next time, I’ll stick to sledding.