Here are some tips from me to you, should you ever find yourself turning greener by the minute on a pitching and tossing vessel. If that fate is not in the cards for you, perhaps one or two of the following pointers would come in handy in the grip of an oncoming panic attack.
- The first rule of avoiding seasickness is: do not talk about seasickness. Who’s seasick? Certainly not you. Best not to talk or even think about it. You are feeling great!
- So, relax. Try to find a comfortable position where you don’t have to work so hard to maintain equilibrium. Now, DO NOT MOVE. Breathe deeply. Unclench your jaw. Stop holding in your belly. As great as it is for your abs, you’re not at the gym, so let it all go.
- Relax. You are probably not about to die or anything. So don’t worry, and whistle a happy tune.
- Do not go below. If you must, make it snappy and first remove all the layers of clothing that make you feel clumsy and like you weigh 10,000 pounds.
- Eat or drink something. Have a little nosh. Maybe ginger if you like. Just give your stomach something to do other than preparing to hurl.
- Now that your stomach is busy, it’s time to preoccupy your brain. Try to meditate on gratitude, or if that fails, think about all of your life’s regrets while you search the water for dolphins. Remember dolphins? You love dolphins. Where are all the dolphins!!! Are you feeling seasick? You’re too distracted to remember what that word means.
- If you prefer, or if needed, you can always try steering the boat, which most people say is the best cure anyhow. Although all of the previous instructions probably won’t help while you steer – except the reminder to freaking relax already and suck some of that fresh breeze into your belly. If you find you’re not distracted enough from your dizzy misery by working to stay on course, reflect on how wrong you were when you assumed that sailing was not a physical sport.
If you’ve been successful you should now have a slight headache. But at least you’re not making a serious assessment of the best place to deposit your vomit. Over the side? In one of five buckets? Trash bag? Thoroughly inadequate marine head?