Patient H69 is off to New York !

It’s a week away and I am making plans and booking interviews, getting ready to head off to the Big Apple to promote my book. However, this is more than just a trip to an exciting city, I am fully expecting it to be a baptism by fire. I have not travelled abroad alone since I lost my sight in 2012, and if I am honest, I am terrified.

Around a week or two ago I had a major wobble, and for around half a day considered cancelling my flight. I couldn’t – it’s non-refundable. But, when I calmed down I decided I needed to do one simple thing – reframe this whole thing. Rather than seeing myself as Vanessa, the producer, the doer – someone not normally fazed by anything in life. I had to be someone new. I could still be confident, but I had to admit I was fazed – I was more than fazed, I was scared.

So, my new perspective is that I intend to make life simple for myself. This trip will be gentle, and on my terms. I plan to avoid the hustle and noise of Manhattan and wander the leafy suburbs of Brooklyn, where I am staying with an old friend. What’s more – I suddenly realised I didn’t need to fill my time with sweating and negotiating the crowds as a tourist – I have been a tourist in New York before. This time I plan to hang out in local delis, drink chai lattes and wander around Brooklyn bookstores – and write. I plan to catch up with old friends and relax.

So, it turns out that I needed that wobble, and that re-framing this trip is the best thing I have ever done. I now believe this adventure is not scary at all – in fact it’s an opportunity to spend some time with myself…and that is more than just fine. It’s marvellous.

The Washing Post published a lovely review last week, hopefully there will be a few more to come 🙂


Published by Vanessa Potter

I'm Vanessa, writer, speaker and meditation enthusiast. I wasn't always a writer. I used to make annoying TV ads, which I'd still be doing, if I hadn't woken up blind and paralysed one morning in 2012. Yup. It was one helluva wake-up call and I wrote a book about it. That experience turned me into the curious, self-experimenting, brain-obsessed woman I am now. I've just spent the last 3 years practising 10 different meditation techniques as part of a ground-breaking EEG study with Cambridge. Follow me to find out what happened. 'Finding my Right Mind: One Woman's Experiment to put Meditation to the Test, publishing 2021.

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