I love taking off in an airplane. Actually, I love walking through airports and I love boarding a plane (well, unless I’m seated by someone who obviously does not want a seatmate) and I LOVE the take-off. I notice people around me dozing off, reading a magazine or glaring in sullen silence waiting to arrive at their apparently unhappy destination. But me? I feel a secret thrill. It’s an adventure. A new thing.
A couple of weekends ago I flew to my hometown to visit family and attend a class reunion. It wasn’t a new or exciting destination. I lived there for 22 years and have visited often ever since. But I still grinned as I strode through the airport and walked down the ramp into the planes. And the take-off? It made me want to giggle. Every time. I felt gleeful. Something new was about to happen.
Obviously I love adventure. But if you listen to some phone conversations, they might go something like this:
“What’s new in your life?”
“Well, not much. You know, the usual. Karina’s volleyball, Larissa’s basketball, Andrew’s adjusting to high school. Yeah – laundry, cooking, cleaning. Oh! Walked a different trail today. That was exciting.”
“Yeah. Me too. We just keep on keeping on.”
Not thrilling. Doesn’t invoke a giggle. Barely warrants a smile.
But tonight, after killing it in the middle position of her volleyball team, my daughter was talking about how weird it is to be a Junior in high-school and be noticed as one of those players that she used to think she could never be. Her stats were good. She played a key role in her team’s play tonight. But she doesn’t feel much different.
Hmm. My stats are good. I take care of a family of five. I teach. I help others. I reach out. I’m getting healthier. Am I becoming one of those people I set out to be? I doubt myself at times because I still am waiting to feel like a grown-up!
My plane might not be glamorous, but you know what? It still takes me to exciting places. I wouldn’t trade the destination of a relationship with my children and a job that makes a difference in the world. I could happily give up my laundry, in all honesty, but sometimes even the best flights to exotic locals might have to travel through some turbulence.
Yes. I love the take-off. The idea of new and exciting possibilities. It’s a thrill. I grin to myself and give a little giggle. I should head to bed, because, who knows what’s going to happen tomorrow?!
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