It’s All Fun And Games Until—‘Near Death’–Elevator Anxiety

We went to St. Simons Island, GA, for my Cuz Christopher’s wedding twelve years ago.

{Vintage pic of my heart}

My Aunt Trisha and Uncle Jim rented this extra-large, deluxe beach house for the entire family to stay in for the wedding weekend. It was a stunning property and home; right on the water, infinity pool, large gathering areas inside and out. The main house had four floors, and the guest house that had two more bedrooms and living areas to boot.

Our family of four had the top floor of the main house (4th floor). It was fabulous. A massive room with 2 queen beds, a sitting area, a balcony overlooking the water, a small kitchenette, and access to the elevator.

{My Mom had such a great weekend-we were all so happy to be together}

I vaguely recall us all arriving around the same time, some from Florida and some from GA and unloading all the vehicles. Trish and Jim had planned several big gatherings at the house for the weekend; breakfasts, lunches, the rehearsal dinner, etc.… so they came with a lot of baggage. 

We utilized the elevator to take items from the basement level, where the parking area was to the kitchen and beyond. 

It was one of those residential elevators that appeared to be a regular interior door until you opened it up; the door would only open if the elevator was called to your floor and available.

Of course, back then, Suz was a bigger fan of stairs because—fat burning. And my knees were in tip-top shape.

The weekend was just perfect; the whole fam-damily was there, plus old friends who were like family; it was such a festive celebration.

I remember the day before we departed, a big group of us were in the kitchen, and we could vaguely hear someone yelling and banging around.

We laughed and thought, who the heck is making all that racket? Well, a few minutes later, we realized it was my Mom, and she was trapped in the elevator; her room was on the third floor, and her knees were shot, so she used the elevator often. But this time, she couldn’t get the door to open.

My Uncle was able to get her out after about 10 minutes, she was panicked, and she also had a full bladder; we kind of poo-pooed her panic-ridden face. 

I regret that terribly.

Fast forward to the last day on the Island, and my family was packing up all our crap on the fourth floor. I decided to make it easy and load ALL our stuff onto the elevator and take it down in one trip. I called the elevator, started placing suitcases in front of the closed door. When the light let me know the elevator was here, I casually opened the door, turned back and started grabbing bags, then turned towards the elevator with them in hand to step INTO the elevator when I realized the elevator was NOT on my floor. 

All I could see was the empty shaft, the elevator car was in the basement. My heart dropped.

I was ——–this close——–to just stepping into blackness.

Thinking about it again right now, how I didn’t shat my party pants is beyond me.

I’ve always had a slight fear of heights, but I added fear of elevators to my list after this escapade. 

A few years later we were in Vegas with a large group of friends and we were staying on the 30th floor. There was not ONE time that I stepped into the elevator that I didn’t look closely at the floor and step in with trepidation. Everyone giggled at my nervous antics, but the hell with them. 

It was that same year that my Mom had read in the newspaper about an older couple who lived on St. Simons Island (or the vicinity) that had an elevator. They became trapped, with no phone, and subsequently passed away there.


I still think of that couple when I think of elevators. 

When my Aunt and Uncle were looking at homes recently, a few popped up with elevators. ME; THE HELL WITH ELEVATORS!

Anyone else have an irrational a fear of elevators? I also have a little ‘something’ with escalators, but I shouldn’t show all my crazy in one day.

Your friend Suz who might not be able to entertain you with her blog had she taken that ONE step.


31 thoughts on “It’s All Fun And Games Until—‘Near Death’–Elevator Anxiety

      1. Loved your story, with all the twists and turns. OMG, I take my phone with me everywhere I go in my house or otherwise—not because I care if I miss a call—but because I’m always paranoid that there will be some freakish accident or unbelievable circumstance that will render me helpless.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You are smart to do so. You (like most of us) probably don’t have a landline anymore, so we really should carry our phones with us just in case of an emergency. {Like a fall, or someone breaking in or a meteor falling in your yard} You.never.know.


  1. The Widow Badass

    Sounds like a pretty damn RATIONAL fear to me! I would be leery of home elevators – they should be inspected regularly just like commercial elevators and I wonder how many actually are.
    I installed a stair lift when my mom came to spend her last months with me (my abode was on the second floor of my property) and that worked out really well. Mom could sit in the chair and be (very slowly) whisked upstairs and down.


    Liked by 1 person

  2. I would think twice about elevators, too, after those experiences. I have an Escalator Shiver after seeing an unfortunate incident on one. I use them, but I am extra cautious.

    I’d hate being trapped on an elevator with someone. Alone, I’d be less scared.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That elevator thing would have given me nightmares for weeks! We were on a RC Cruise about 25 years ago and one of the staff fell down an elevator shaft on the ship and was killed. There are many horror stories related to elevators! Elevators don’t usually bother me but they probably would if I would have had the same experience as you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Bijoux

    I mean, those are some darned good reasons to be fearful. I’m more afraid of a man getting on an elevator with me when I’m alone OR stairwells when I’m alone. So, I guess my fears are more about being raped or attacked/robbed than dying due to an elevator malfunction.

    Happy Monday thoughts! Lol!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. First, love the wonderful family wedding memories. That house sounds amazing.

    But HOLY AWFULNESS. The couple dying inside their elevator? Oh my goodness. Then your close call? I have never thought to check that the FLOOR is waiting and ready for me to step inside. Yikes.

    No. I haven’t had a scary elevator encounter.

    My brother, Pat, got stuck in an elevator once with other people for maybe an hour. He is claustrophobic and his recreation is entertaining but your post puts that ‘laugh’ we all had about it in a whole new light.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I try to take the stairs anyway (even when I’m staying on the sixth floor, as I was last week) so it’s kind of a moot point. But I totally understand your trepidation after what happened!

    The problem with infinity pools is, it takes forever to swim a single lap.


    Liked by 1 person

  7. The elevators in the office building where I worked at one time had a problem with the door not opening when it reached its stop. I got stuck in it for a short time and found out I had claustrophobia. I learned exactly how many seconds it took from our floor (the first stop) to the bottom. As soon as the door closed I counted and if it didn’t open within two seconds of my allotted time, my heart started freezing up. Haha. I have forgotten about that. It was awful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Barbara, Wow, that is awful. That one event seemsed to have left quite the impression in your mind. Thankfully you probably don’t need to get in an elevator too much now.


  8. Pingback: Speaking Of Elevators And Elephants – Busy Bee Suz

  9. Beth Cotell

    I definitely don’t think your fear is irrational! You could have been KILLED! And that poor couple! Can you imagine how horrible that was for them? What about the one that had to look at their spouse already deceased?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Melanie Galliano

    Yikes ~ one of my biggest fears is being trapped in an elevator and having to pee. Not joking either!! I’ve been on a few that creaked and moved oh so slowly. Or it stops and the doors seem to pause before opening. For a second that panic creeps in making me think I’m going to get stuck!

    Liked by 1 person

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