Motion Sickness

As a child, I suffered severe motion sickness. This presented a problem for my mother who was known to wake up any morning and (preschooler in tow) spontaneously drive across the country in her Mercury.

When I was four, Janie discovered Dramamine.  Since I couldn’t swallow a pill and chewing it was out of the question, she crushed the vile yellow powder in a spoonful of water. Car loaded with overnight bags and five hundred miles worth of Cokes, Janie stood in front of me with the watery spoonful of Dramamine in one hand and a cookie in the other.

“Come on,” she’d reason. “You know it’s better than throwing up all the way to New Mexico.”

I would steel myself and gulp it down. My whole body shuddered until the cookie, chewed and swallowed, neutralize the bitter chemical taste.

Then, I slept for the next eight hours. Janie was right, it was way better than throwing up for five hundred miles.

Somewhere around the time I got my fist pair of glasses I discovered motion sickness wasn’t a problem if I concentrated on the landscape flying past me. I even learned I could read in the car if I held the book high enough to keep a peripheral eye on the visual data outside the window.

The few times I have forgotten and done something careless, like focus on a roadmap sitting in my lap, my world instantly spins like I am tumbling head first into a bottomless chasm.

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