A Missed Train

Friday 27 July, 2001

I went away for the weekend. Karaj offered to take me to the station. I hesitated because I didn’t want to miss it like I had done once before when Karaj had given my a lift. However, he suggested we leave an hour beforehand and I agreed. Later, Karaj decided that he wanted to have lunch with Arun and me.

Initially I had no problem with a lunch date because I thought we would have plenty of time to get to the local café and back. Unfortunately we went for lunch elsewhere and as soon as we had parked the car and entered the pub I felt anxious that I might miss my train. My biggest mistake turned out to be that I didn’t communicate my anxiety to Karaj. [Karaj: Verbalise.] I felt that because we had missed a train in the past, Karaj would be well aware not only of the situation but also of my anxiety. (Assumption!) I was wrong.

By the time we left the pub it was far too late. We had 20 minutes to get to the station and it took us 40 minutes. I was pretty livid as we sat in the car, and I had already decided that I would cover the cost of missing my specified train so that I could best learn my lesson: I need to verbalise everything.

[Karaj: You can use the money in other ways. You do not have to lose, miss or break anything to learn a lesson.]

Karaj and I talked about it and I struggled to calm down. Then two things happened. Firstly, the clock ticked past the time of my train so, having clearly missed it, anything which now happened was a bonus, and secondly, Karaj reminded me of the airport scenario – I had missed my flight and had been expected to pay for a rescheduled ticket but didn’t have to. Maybe I wouldn’t need to pay for a new train ticket.

What also came out of our dialogue was that our two scripts had come together to create the situation we found ourselves in. This means that it will happen again and again. In fact Karaj stressed that I will continue to miss trains because the lesson to be learned for me is to be able to relax with whatever stressful situation I find myself in. When I learn to be calm in those situations then something else will happen for me to deal with. Furthermore, when I verbalise my anxiety to Karaj I must be prepared to for his script to put up a fight. For example, I know for a fact that had I verbalised my tension in the pub, Karaj would have said, ‘Calm down will you, we’ll make it’. When I hear this I need to be persistent; I need to show a strong Parent ego state.

Although we sorted a very important issue out on the way to the station, we could have used the time even more constructively. That is, Karaj knew he needed to be with me for some reason, but because I did not verbalise my anxiety, we were forced to deal with that issue, instead of something else which may have been more important. This is the added benefit of verbalisation – it clears the pathways to the more important stuff.

[Karaj: Think of the tiredness and frustration. Missing the train and losing money would have been small compared to the insight.]

At the station I enquired about my options. At customer enquiries I was dealt with by a young woman and I felt genuine anxiety as I asked her if she could authorise for me to travel on the next one. She did so immediately and without question. Somehow Karaj had done it again, and once more I was faced with overwhelming evidence that if I can relax, everything will be all right.

Our lunch together had been an enjoyable one but I did not benefit fully from it because I allowed my anxiety to dominate me and I failed to verbalise it.


One Response to “A Missed Train”

  1. George Says:

    I feel anxious just reading this. I know the feeling of wanting to be on time, but sometimes it can mean being too early, and that can be just as taxing on the nerves, waiting for the bus/ train/ boat/ plane to arrive. I hate being late. Have yet to work this conundrum out.

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