February 15, 2020

It’s a Small World Afterall…

Journal Entry #84

It is a small world.

Full of Angels.

We have been here in Bequia for four days.  And we have already met some amazing locals.  Juliana and Kurt have been really helpful in giving us local tips and pointing us in the direction of local entertainment and restaurants. Jew runs a water taxi and checks in with us almost daily.  Sabine is the manager of our Air B&B and she has been so helpful and responsive for everything we have needed.  She even made us a loaf of home-made bread and had groceries at the house waiting for us when we arrived.  We also met Sabrina who is the head of Travel and Tourism here on the island and owns FrangiPani, a beautiful restaurant overlooking Port Elizabeth– a connection through the Baird family back home.

We received a weird What’s App message yesterday afternoon from an unknown lady named Melissa.  She and most non 1st world countries use Whatsapp as it does use cellular however wifi is prevalent and lower cost for the locals.  We have been using it for years when we travel especially when we are coordinating events with our friends.  The message read “Tim Myers please get in touch with Vibe in St Vincent his number is …”.   Tim didn’t coordinate Vibe to drive us to and from the airport, Alicia did.  Tim thought it must be a mistake, so we dismissed it.

Hours later, just before dinner, I received an email from Sabine.  She asked if anyone in our group was named Julien and did we have our passports?  Vibe (on the mainland) had a couple of passports and thought they were from our group?

My heart started to race.

We were already at dinner and we were unable to check and physically see if we had our passports.  But doubt also crept in because no one in our group is named Julien.

But, my passport is in Julie-Anna…was there an error in translation?

When we got home from dinner at Coco’s (who hosted an amazing singer/piano player for the evening), I began tearing apart our room, our safe, our suitcases, drawers…

Nothing. No passports to be found, anywhere.

The more I searched, the more panic set in.  Anxiety reared it’s ugly head…again.  My mind started making plans to find not only the Canadian Consulate, but the US Consulate on the mainland…a ferry ride there – days spent on the main land  trying to get temporary passports.  Luckily, I still had my Permanent Resident Card, and a photocopy of our passport.  Nor did we have our temporary travel visa’s issued when we arrived.  How would we get out of here?  How would we be granted entry back into Canada? What a mess!

My brain, went on and on…I wasn’t thinking clearly or rationally.  Anxiety had a strong hold this time.  And I was losing.

As I was looking frantically for the passports, my heart rate accelerating,  Tim received a message back from Juliana that we needed to call Vibe immediately and she gave us his phone number to call him direct.

So, he did.

Vibe had both Tim’s and my passports.  They were accidentally left in the cup holder in the back of his van.  It was such a rush to get to the last Ferry of the day on the day that we arrived, that they simply were left behind.  It had been a day or so since he found the passports, and then it took him a few days to track us down.  The crazy part of all of this is, that we don’t know who Suzanne Gabriel is, and how she came to create this post.


You would think at this point, I would start to settle down.  Amazing how news on this Island spread so quickly, and that the contacts that we made in the first few days of being here all helped to resolve this unfortunate event.  I mean, in all of our travel, in ALL of Tim’s travel we have NEVER misplaced our passports.  It was a really anxious day of travel, and this honest mistake happened.

Tim took the 6:30am Ferry back to St. Vincent’s this morning to meet Vibe and to pick up our passports.  Fortunately, he was able to meet with Vibe – he was leaving on vacation himself later today – the timing was crucial.  In the end, all it cost us was two trips on the ferry ($25CAN) and Tim gave Vibe a finder’s fee ($40US).  Tim was back home by 9:30 am and I was just waking up after a long fitful night.

My body doesn’t have a re-set button yet.  It doesn’t always know how to get out of the anxiety loop.  This is where I get into trouble.  It is like I enter into a dynamic loop of chemicals firing, and I just get stuck there.  Picture a leaf circling a drain.  It spins and spins, cycles and cycles but can never get out of the swirling because it is too big to fit down the drain.  It eventually will stop when the water runs out…but sometimes there is a lot of water to drain until the leaf rests on the bottom by the drain.  I spun for 6 hours. 

This loop is different from a typical anxiety spell.  It is different because nothing that I do settles me.  There is no change when I breathe.  There is no change when I talk myself down.  There is no change with tapping.  There is virtually no change with the custom tincture.  My heart rate is higher than a usually episode, I sweat more than just in my palms.  I have diarrhea. I am hot and cold at the same time.  I am just stuck in a chemical groove until my body is so exhausted it gives up.

Then sleep comes.

From a medical perspective, we are still investigating this loop – we have ruled out thyroid issues – but we know that my kidneys are not working optimally – could it be that my adrenal glands are just exhausted too?

Chemo is so hard on the body.  It has been months since I took the Miltefosine, but clearly, that drug has affected me internally and is still wreaking havoc.  Rationally, I know it isn’t completely out of my system yet.  If Cortisone takes 7 years to be processed in the liver and Anaesthetic takes 2 years to move through the system…surely Chemo takes its time too?

Today, I find myself grateful for this small world.  And for all the Angels on this beautiful Island of Bequia that were looking out for us.  My love for this place and all of humanity has just grown exponentially.  In this world of chaos and confusion and uncertain times, kindness and love are still at the core of our existence, at the root of our humanity.

And for that, I am grateful!

Xo Juli


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