Not going: The pain and power of choosing to not go skiing

If you can survive the first two hours after you’ve decided NOT to go skiing, then you’re mostly in the clear. Those two hours, though, are going to be a mental spiral filled with regret, but ultimately, power.

Midwest Ski Journal is mostly dedicated to making it work. We emphasize how to make your stars align and get you out on your ski trip or ski day. What we don’t spend time chronicling are those painful, dreaded moments in which you pull the plug.

The aftermath of such a decision is filled with second-guessing and a sad, lonely unpacking process. But flexing our mental strength against the magnetism of the slopes is healthy for envious flatlanders like us.


I’m tired and broke and things in my life need doing. Plus, I’ve been skiing a bunch lately. Do I really need to go grind it out again this weekend?

I check the forecast, purely out of habit. I’m not really going, but I want to do some reconnaissance work for the weeks ahead, ya know? I check again and the forecast has upgraded. Oh no.

The things that need doing back home still need doing. The forecast would have to get to at least X inches before I consider taking off again.


*Opens OpenSnow – “X-XX inches for Saturday morning.”

Honestly, it probably wouldn’t be that expensive to go. And I could get back in time for work next week. I could probably get a few of these to-do’s done during the week, too.

Also, why wouldn’t I go if the getting’s good? What if it stops snowing there for the year and I missed my chance? I mean, I bought a season pass, so I have to make it worth it.


I’m not going, obviously. I still haven’t unpacked my bag from last weekend. I have not done any house chores this week and my dog doesn’t recognize me. I pay a lot for this house. I probably should spent a few nights in a row in it.

*Opens OpenSnow because I love to make myself miserable – “XX inches for Saturday morning”

*Make frantic phone calls to friends trying to remain calm, asking them to talk me out of it, which they refuse to do.

“Let’s check back in tomorrow morning.”


*Opens OpenSnow at 5 a.m.

Red alert. It’s going off. I get everybody back on the phone. We’re definitely going. An email to my boss with a SUPER flimsy excuse is already drafted.

Sure, it’s going to be twice as much travel as time skiing. And, no, nobody else will go with me because it’s such an aggressive mission. And, yes, my to-do list is overflowing with weeks of neglect…


But I’m going! Right? This is the right call. I’m going.

“Don’t talk me out of it,” I say to the five different people I’ve called to try and get them to talk me out of it.

The car is packed, I merge onto the interstate and immediately exit, turning around and heading back home to where I knew I was never going to leave in the first place.

This was based on a true story that may or may not have happened to me last weekend. To everyone who has felt this themselves, I’m sorry for what you’ve gone through, too.

P.S. – I still didn’t get my to-do list done. Until next week!

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