Coming Out of the Hodophobic Closet

4 hours to go.

We are packed (mostly). The house is clean (almost). We are waiting impatiently for departure time.

But allow me to back up a little…

I realized that if I was ever going fulfill my dream of family world travel then I would need a little help. That’s when Rob and I started collecting reward points from credit cards.

Some incredible airfare sales to Europe opened up on the day after Thanksgiving. After a few hours of deliberation, Rob convincing me that he felt really good about it, sleeping on the idea, and waking up to more deliberation, we pulled the trigger.

October – April:
I saved up my pennies by writing 140 articles.

January – April:
I planned my hiney off in order to have the most memorable, convenient, and wonderful family trip yet (NYC, Paris, Luxembourg, part of Germany, Netherlands, and Belgium).


Now, back to present day…

Let’s see, what other synonyms can I use?

Hodophobia: The irrational and intense fear of travel. Hodophobia.


The thing is, I LOVE to travel! I feel an energy to it that I don’t have toward anything else. But ever since I can remember I’ve always felt all of these scary things leading up to leaving. Every time.


  • Acts of terrorism
  • Acts of God
  • Fear of coming home without one of my kids
  • Fear of not coming home myself or in the very least, not all in one piece
  • Fear of a crashing plane, train, car, boat, or bike
  • Fear of coming home to a dead cat and devastated children
  • Sadness over leaving my other family behind
  • Guilt over the fact that not everyone can do this
  • Guilt over spending so much money on this rather than it going toward many other much more important and worthy things

  • Nervousness over leaving my comfortable bed and being in pain after waking up
  • Nervousness for not everything to go perfectly after I’ve spent so much time, effort, and energy bringing it to pass
  • Nervousness because my dream’s reality may not live up to the dream I’ve had in my head for more than a decade
Did I cover everything? Likely not. But you get the idea.
These fears and thoughts swim (more like, tread water) through my head for weeks and months before impending doom travel. I wish it wasn’t so. I wish I could be one of those people (ahem, Rob) who feel nothing but joy and excitement for leaving everything comfortable and routine behind…but I’m not. I work hard in my head to keep myself from backing out at any moment.
I don’t let the anxiety overtake me. I don’t let the thoughts dictate my actions. I want to explore the world and, by golly, I decide that I will!
And then a magical thing happens. Every time.
I arrive at my destination and all the scariness sinks away, the dread dissipates, and I’m left feeling…well…DELIGHTFUL and terrific memories to last a lifetime.
When I’m out being curious and seeing new surroundings I feel more calm and more happy then I do at any other time. I feel like ME. 
And all the work, time, money, and worry that precedes is 100% unabashedly WORTH all of it!
Now since I haven’t actually landed anywhere yet, I’m still feeling all the bad feelings. However, I’m banking on my past experiences to get me through this unpleasant phase…because all I can think about right now is the fact that we will be in Paris during their election and I hope we don’t get caught in the middle of any infighting. Or that my c-diff will be triggered. Or that we will all catch a nasty cold. Or that I will have overwhelming fatigue from 4 overnight flights and jet lag. 
Or, or, or, or, or…

One thought on “Coming Out of the Hodophobic Closet

  1. I love your writing! I have a bunch of family going to Paris on Thurs. They'll be there for the Temple open house, then are traveling south to my grandparents' on election day. I really wish I were going, but there's a little baby keeping me here. Jeff knows a lot of the tricks of earning miles. You used to be able to order large amounts of coins from the treasury, rack up points, then deposit the money into your account…free miles! He went to Germany last year with 2 of our kids, and they each volunteered to bump twice in Detroit on their way home, earning $3600 in credits. He got 6 tickets to China just from that. He is in Beijing right now with our 3 girls, while I am at home with the 3 boys! (lame) I relate to love of travel and also guilt that I know not everyone can do it. Please post a lot of photos! My heart aches to go to France right now. I am missing all the family discussion on political scandal and watching Eurovision with them!

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