My Professional Background - Once upon a time, I wanted to be a motivational speaker. Actually, I was a professional motivational speaker for about 5 years.:
I firmly believe that there is a direct correlation between my extreme hotel phobia and the amount of Dateline NBC episodes I have seen in my lifetime.

But just hear me out.

My husband and I traveled with our two kids (11 months and 2.5) up to Indiana this past weekend for a family funeral. We stayed in a pretty nice hotel right off the Notre Dame campus. We could literally see “Touchdown Jesus” from our room. (Rudy, Rudy!)

Since we left our home in Kansas in a bit of a hurry, I didn’t have time to bring my usual “Hotel Phobic Kit” complete with disinfectant wipes, disinfectant spray, my DreamSack (LOVE it), slippers, bathrobe, towels, hand sanitizer, and anything else that will put a layer between me and stuff that shows up under a black light. (Y’all, just typing that gave me a major case of the heebie jeebies.) I was, thankfully, able to bring my king size blanket and my pillow, which allowed me to get some sleep.

This is no exaggeration. I will not sleep well if I know I’m touching communal sheets/comforters/pillows. I know, I need help.

When we arrived in South Bend at 1:30 a.m. on Sunday morning, the hotel only had one crib available for us. So we made a cushy “bed” of blankets on the floor for JJ, our oldest. He still sleeps in a crib at home, but we took a chance that he wouldn’t go far given his own irrational fear of doing anything without holding all six of his blankets at the same time. It’s pretty limiting as far as operating doors and elevators is concerned.

JJ slept pretty well on the blankets, but we woke up each morning to find him in various other locations around the room. Our final day there, we found him under the end table — at least five feet away from his makeshift bed. I didn’t have a heart to wake him as I headed out the door to get breakfast.

Fast forward several hours later as we’re headed back home to Kansas. We stopped for lunch, and JJ crawled up into my lap and began to beat his head into my chest. He also started to pull and scratch at his ear. It wasn’t until I pulled back his mullet hair that I realized there was a rather large, red bump just behind his left ear. Immediately, my mind jumped to that very morning when I found him with his left ear firmly planted on the hotel carpet.

I felt like a pretty stellar mom at that point. There I was all comfortable with my king sized blanket and pillow while my baby boy was probably poisoned by some nasty carpet chemical while he slept ON THE FLOOR.

Naturally, I remained calm, looked at WebMD, then freaked out, took a picture of it, called a family friend who is also a nurse, called my mom, called my dad, went to the drug store, talked to the pharmacist, hooked him up with Benadryl and Cortisone, and we made our merry way home.

On the negative side of things, the bump is still there, so we’ll probably head to the pediatrician today. Also, you can add rash-inducing carpet chemicals to the list of things that will forever haunt me in hotel rooms.

On the positive side of things, we finally had a legitimate reason to give our kid Benadryl on a road trip.

If only we could have justified it for the little one…

What about you? Do you have an irrational fear of something?

PS – Don’t EVER drink out of that cup they leave in the bathroom. Just…trust me.


Comments to "The “Mother” of All Phobias"

  1. Shana Spears

    September 20, 2012

    Their pillows and tubs/showers. Don’t ask me why. I just feel like those are the dirtiest places in the hotel room. Oh, and the television remotes – Yucky!

  2. Lori G

    September 20, 2012

    So, chemicals – that’s what you chose to believe it was? I went straight to bed bugs. Yes, bed bugs in the carpet! Ugh.

    • Katy in a Corner

      September 20, 2012

      Lori, I’m sad to say we’ve actually experienced bed bugs before while in Spain. So, I knew what to look for with those nasty things. This bump has no “bite” associated with it…just swelling and hives. Poor baby. It’s gone down a bit today, but I’m traumatized forever.

  3. Rene

    September 20, 2012

    AAUUUGGHHH!!! Hotels totally give me the creepy crawlies too. I will not walk barefoot on the carpet, I always have to take flip flops to wear in the room. The bed creeps me out, the shower creeps me out, the remote always feels sticky. I usually take a ziploc to put over the remote. I’m just glad I am not the only one who gets grossed out by hotels.

  4. Lauren

    September 20, 2012

    Yikes! Spider bite maybe? Poor little guy! πŸ™
    (And that pic of JJ under the table could totally be Christian too!)

  5. Elisabeth Fuller

    September 20, 2012

    I cannot believe I read this post today, of all days…I am currently staffing a meeting and am spending two nights in a hotel.

    • Katy in a Corner

      September 20, 2012

      Don’t forget to take a large Ziploc bag to put the remote in when you get there. This is a great trick to suffocate the germs. Just think of how many people have sneezed on that thing. πŸ™‚
      Happy travels! Miss you my sweet friend! xx

  6. Terry

    September 20, 2012

    I share your phobia … And, forget using a water glass if you are in Mexico. I literally saw wiggling life forms when I filled the bathroom glass with tap water, just to see.

    • Katy in a Corner

      September 20, 2012

      I just threw up a little.

  7. Desiree McDougal

    September 20, 2012

    Same phobia here too. Except I ended up with a bad case of scabies from a hotel bed in NYC back in 1994. Still can’t bring myself to touch another mattress that I dont own. Ewwww

    • Katy in a Corner

      September 20, 2012

      This comment just scarred me for life. πŸ™‚

  8. Brianne

    September 20, 2012

    I am a moderate self-diagnosed germaphob, especially after having had a preemie. Thanks for reinforcing my fear. I hate hotel rooms just as much as the rest of you. Especially the thought of bed bugs. Other fears are as follows: communal swimming pools, gym equipment, touching shopping carts, doctors’ office chairs (we stand while we wait), putting my baby on the scale at the doctor’s office, elevator buttons… should I really continue? I actually washed some of my purchased Target items when I got home from the store because the checkout cashier had a cold. Touching restaurant menus is the newest fear for me. Supposedly they are covered in feces.

    • Katy in a Corner

      September 21, 2012

      Okay, your case might be a bit more severe than mine. This advice is not to be considered medical advice or whatever “professional help” means to you, but I suggest two things:
      1) Get rid of your television.
      2) Cancel your Internet subscription.
      I know it’s a conflict of interest b/c without Internet you can’t read this site. But it’s for your own good. And I care that much. πŸ™‚

  9. Pingback: The Shots Heard 'Round the World | (Nobody Puts) Katy in a Corner


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