Friday, March 17, 2017

Spring Break Day 5: Goodbye Loreto!

Day five is where it really caught up with me. We ended up sleeping in late, which meant we missed an early shore excursion, but given the rest of my day I can honestly say that it was the right decision despite the cost incurred. There were not many things on the schedule before 3 PM (our departure time from Loreto) so it was mostly wandering around and relaxing, trying to build up some energy. It was sorely needed, since I was pretty wiped out and Jean was having a skin reaction to all the sun we got; neither of us slept well, both of us were mildly grumpy because of it, and because of that we spent most of the day 'turtling up' together and not doing much of anything. Which wasn't to say that we didn't have a good time; it's hard to be unhappy on a cruise ship even if you decide to sit at the pool and drink mocktails and read a book. Or, in our case, when Jean went to do some knitting in the Craft Lounge while I went to the casino and lost at cards.

For lunch we met up with Jaques and Dawn again, and had a really lovely time catching up, relaxing and being social with another couple. It was pretty much the ideal interaction. We talked about getting together later for boardgames, but unfortunately this was all the time we really had with them; other things just seemed to get in the way and then we ran out of cruise. But it was good to see them and talk with them and compare our experiences to theirs and how it synced up or didn't with previous cruises and outings.

We had a nice quiet dinner and then we went to see Wil Wheaton do a stage reading of a choose-your-own-adventure book complete with audience participation, which was brilliant and hilarious. Jean stayed for the whole thing with a fellow crafty person she'd met earlier in the day while I was blowing money in the casino, but I was feeling pretty lousy so I left early to go back to the room.

Day five was an interesting day to reflect on, because only while looking back on it did I realize that for me it was the turning point. I had been "on" for most of the previous days, trying to be sociable and introduce myself to people and interact and be friendly and allow others to be friendly with me, but by day five I was burned out. I started using my "NO, I do NOT want to friendship right now" button in public, and started carrying my book with me on deck, instead of reading it just in the cabin. When I get tired like that, it allows my anxiety and mental illness to really take hold of me, and I think at the time I didn't realize it but I was letting my brain get the better of me, having work thoughts and worries about stuff that I had specifically pledged to break from during the cruise.

For a dedicated introvert and a person who suffers from social anxiety, the cruise was a real test of my limits, both good and bad. And day five was when Jean and I started talking about the pros and cons of doing the cruise in 2018, and what that would entail, and what we might think about doing differently, and whether we wanted to commit to the cost and time off again. And on day five, it was looking like maybe this JoCoCruise was enough for the two of us.