I have just been travelling back to the Isle of Man (where I grew up) for a few days. Now, I hate travelling, I am sure there are many reasons for this… but today was a particularly bad experience. However, as with every experience in my life it was all very quickly put into perspective; and perspective, well, that’s something that hits you like a ton of bricks.
This particular morning, I woke up and in the pitch black walked to the toilet, barefoot (this fact is important) just before I reached the loo, I stepped in cat sick. (at this point I really should have realised how the rest of the day would turn out) I then went downstairs, still barefoot (I don’t really know why) and once again stepped in cat sick. (any cat lovers out there, please don’t be worried, my cats are just idiots who eat too much grass)
So following this vomit fest around my house, I was in a hurry to get to work and locked myself out of the house. (the back door was open, luckily) I went round, came inside, let myself through and left the house again- halfway to work and I realised I had left my breakfast shake in the front porch. At this point I was very aware that I had flights to catch that day so needed to leave plenty of time for everything that could possibly go wrong.
Luckily, work was fine and I got to the airport without a hitch. Once there however, I left my boarding pass on a seat, dropped coffee down myself and almost left my laptop in the lounge. After this quick barrage of things going wrong a squeezed myself into my seat and sat uncomfortably for the 45minute flight. Now, being a 6ft woman is hard in this world (as I type this, I am hunched over a table that is too low for me) but airplane seats and cinema seats are the WORSE.
This is where it happened, the most painful part of the day, physically and emotionally. As I stood up, I caught my bad* knee on the arm rest of the chair, perfect height for a 6footer. I thought I would throw up, or pass out the pain was horrific. Instead, I just started to cry, big baby tears, in front of the queue to get off the plane. I blubbed like I had a boo-boo.
As I sat waiting for my connecting flight, I was thinking how shitty my day had been, which leads to how shitty my week had been, which is never a good route to look down… why do we do it to ourselves? Start thinking about when are lives where better, or when was I last really happy? It’s all just self-pitying, most of us (and I say most, because of course there are exceptions) actually handle the everyday stresses and the hideous one off events in our lives well, it is only on reflection do we start to question if we handled it right, or if we could have done something different. One of my favourite things I have read is “Don’t look back, you are not going that way” and it is so true, I like to look back sometimes, but for the happy memories.
Anyway, I digress. After all of this self-pitying, thinking and reflection. I walked on the next plane and was sat with a row free in front. (please don’t be children, please don’t be children) Once the plane was full, a family came on, a family with two young girls, a baby strapped to the mother and young boy in a wheelchair with two braces on his legs. I made idol chitchat with the father, as he spoke though, he had this positivity that surrounded him. Somehow throughout the stress of the journey and the ailment of his son, he was positive, the mother as well, smiling and chatting away to her son and baby. The girls were unruly (what girls aren’t) but nobody particularly minded, you try sitting in a family of 5 on a 4 across plane! After some bribery with olives (for the kids, not me) the girls were fine, settled and happy.
It was about this point the ton of bricks hit me. Ouch. I mean, yes my knee hurt, and yes I had a bit of crappy day, but my life is NOT so bad. Now, please don’t get me wrong, I did not see the family and think “their life is awful, mine’s not so bad” that’s not it. What it made me think was, we are all capable of handling whatever life throws at us, we just need to find the strength.
And that’s what I intend to do, there will be crappy days and worse to come, but if we know that deep down we can handle it, then is it so bad?
Here’s to the better days.
*everyone has a bad knee, the one always sore, always a bit bruised and hurts when you go down the stairs