Mistakes and Redirection

We spend a lot of time making decisions. Figuring out what’s best for our lives, be it jobs relationships, locations or lifestyles. So what happens when you realize that a decision you’ve made in your past, one of those life altering decisions that you believed would be an increase to your personal happiness and progress, doesn’t live up to the idea? You have that gut feeling that you’ve made a mistake, that maybe you were even happier before this decision?

What is a mistake and does it even exist?

We live in a ‘no regrets’ culture, where it’s frowned upon to actually admit something might’ve not been the best direction for us. And, hey, this is not me saying we should walk around shamed by our choices whispering ‘I should’ve, could’ve done this or that..”

 

What is a mistake or a regret, if nothing but a learning experience. We can learn how to take the negativity away from these commonly used feelings and learn how to process emotions of dissatisfaction into a more useful future.

 

How do we move on from a wrong move with clarity, ease and no judgement toward ourselves and that decision?

 

I have spent so many of my moments in life analysing and reliving the past. I have allowed myself to replay particular memories or life altering moments in my head on repeat, wondering what if I had made a different decision. But the deep truth to these wonderings always comes back to the same awakening.

 

There are no mistakes. Life runs in a rushing course of lessons, development and growth. Some lessons may feel like setbacks, or fuck ups, but they are always just lessons, albeit maybe destructive, frustratingly and disappointing lessons.  But always, this leads to growth within ourselves. A mistake, although we can admit was a wrong move for us, is always this.

 

There is a certain amount of rebellion when it comes to admitting you’ve made a mistake. I toss and turn inside not wanting to submit to the idea that I did something ‘wrong.’ Because regret is such a negative word in our society. NO REGRETS EVER.

So we hold on to it. We grasp at our decisions with an eagles talons, justifying to ourselves and trying to convince our brains and guts that we didn’t make the ugly “M” word.

 

But what if, we take a minute to breath.
What if, this is how correct our path.
It’s human. It’s natural. To see different paths of our lives and realize what’s for us and what isn’t. It’s not an offensive feeling to notice this and want to make a change.

 

There is no judgement in making a mistake, if we never admit the mistake we can’t redirect our paths. Admit that the choice isn’t whats holding us back, is really just ourselves. We can never analyze and re-direct. It’s about self compassion. Understanding that it does no good to blame and degrade, only acceptance and determination to shift the issue will help. That’s where the real healing begins. Loving responsibility toward our actions and lives. I include loving because we have to take it easy on ourselves, guys. Even the most permanent of moves within our physical and emotional state can be gently shifted back to an authentic, loving path.

 This is our first human body experience after all. It’s only natural we need a little time off course to figure out what that even means.

Be kind.

Be authentic.

 

Inside Lisp and Wet blankets -or- sharing energy

It never ceases to amaze me how much distraction people need in their lives. Working as a Flight Attendant, I once had a guest grow red in the face spitting curses at me like dodgeballs because I couldn’t get his seatback TV to work properly for him during the eternity which was his 45 minute flight from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. “This is fucking ridiculous, this piece of shit!” he bellowed toward me. And as much as I love being screamed at like a bad internet connection, I can’t help but crack a small chuckle every now and again, which, to be honest, probably sends some of them into an even deeper rage. But how can a person become so irate at 45 minutes of alone time? He can’t possibly be that disturbed at the sounds of his own thoughts, can he? Who knows today, maybe the voice in his head has an annoying lisp that spits while talking, making it completely unbearably annoying to listen to for more than 5 minutes.

I wouldn’t doubt it, and I usually like to imagine that during the throws of complaints.

Something to pass the time through complaints, ya know?

 

One of the main issues with being a flight attendant isn’t far off that of being in the general service industry – the people.

Or, more specifically, the entitled jerk faced crank bottoms that seem to have a constant wedgie of dissatisfaction for every minor detail of their existence.
Yea, those guys.

And I’m not one of those people that go around spouting things like “I hate everyone” I genuinely don’t. I think for the most part, people are good. Albeit a little unaware of their emotions and temperament. But I don’t think people are malicious by nature, call me an doe-eyed optimist. But it comes to a point, where I’ve had to literally ask myself, outloud, why do airplanes bring out the worst in people?

 

Maybe alone time is undervalued. Well, I know it is. We have too many distractions that make it easy to float by, content but possibly not fulfilled. I love the distractions as much as the next person. In fact I can assure you I’ve looked at my phone at least five different times since I sat down to right this entry. It’s completely unintentional. Which is the more frightening aspect of doing it, in my millennial opinion.

 

But once upon a time, I had the wonderful pleasure of announcing that, against all odds and Mother Nature, we were actually early to our destination! Holy moly and some guacamole, guys. We finally got to deliver some *good* news to our guests. A small but pretty awesome affair. Smiling as I sat in my jumpseat, I swear I actually heard a guest roll her eyes. Then an exasperated exhale, that didn’t sound too unlike a car engine finally giving up escaped her “Great,” she sighed. “ now I’ll have to wait at the damn airport for my car to arrive, good going.”

 

Well, alrighty, then.

 

I’ve become increasingly aware of the fact that we live in a culture where being “busy” is all the trend. Doesn’t even seem to matter what you’re busy doing honestly, as long as you are busy, you seem important. You have things to do, people to see, work and the weather to complain about it. And taking three hours out of your preciously penciled in day to travel in an actual flying tube to another location on the other side of the country or possibly another continent in under one measly day. Where if we’re being honest, you’ve probably spent more time in your life binge watching House of Cards on any given Sunday.

 

Maybe people aren’t used to being told what to do. So, when I, tell you – no, you cannot stand up to go to the restroom young man, because I’m literally levitating off my jumpseat due to turbulence right now and at this point I’m not so concerned with your well being, given the fact that you’ve been as pleasant toward me as poison ivy rash in my butthole. But to be quite honest, it’s the fact that you will literally impale yourself on the roof of this plane. It’s very expensive and that’s oh, so much paper work for me. 

Quite honestly sometimes I have no more fucks to give because you’ll blame me either way, just because I exist and I’m forced to wear a name tag.

This isn’t a PSA to be nice to your fellow flight attendant next time you’re in the air. I’m well aware of what I got myself into with this job, just like any other person who’s taken up paycheck in the service industry. We get it. What I’m saying is maybe we can take a few moments of breath to realize the best things happen when were aware and conscious of our behavior. That rushing through life doesn’t mean we’re busy and important, that it usually accounts for us being stressed and lashing out at others. Taking time to be actually happy to just be with ourselves sometimes. And, honestly, if you can’t handle being alone with yourself just for an hour or so..you probably have some work to do on your life, your purpose and personality.

When we take our time, notice our effect on other people, maybe life would in turn be a little nicer for everyone? Because energy is a reality. Ever walked into a room and just sensed all the heavy grossness a bad vibe can grant you? Any room you walk into, YOU have the power. You can make it a little lighter and brighter or you and your attitude can contribute to the feeling of wet blanket being thrown on you first thing in the morning. 

So when a woman shouts at me that I’m  “the worst person she’d ever met in her life” all because I told her I didn’t Speedy Gonzalez my little tush over to her seat fast enough to take her dirty tissue from her, I’m just saying things are heading down a bad path. Because if I’m the worst thing that’s you truly believe has ever happened to you…really? the worst?

You’ve actually lived an amazing sunshine filled rainbow-infused life so far.

because I’m a fuckin delight.

…On most days, promise.

 

 

Heavy Snow and Hot Coffee – The Beauty of Oslo

 

Underneath my two shirts, hefty sweater, leggings, jeans and a three-quarter length down coat, I had a sudden surge of sympathy for the Pillsbury doughboy and all his slow waddling. I probably looked a bit like him too with all my layers of pillowy softness. Except without all the smiles and giggles.
I would have happily have accepted those freshly baked warm cookies, however. But, hell, at that point I would’ve pressed my cheeks up against a warmed car hood if I had had the option. I had just arrived in Norway and I’ve never been so cold.

 


Flashback to 2013, I had been living in a suburb of Paris for a few months. I had finally decided to take on my first trip out of the land of cheese and wine to visit my then boyfriend, who was studying in Norway for the semester. I had taken a train, then a plane and was then begrudgingly seated on a stale smelling bus with a dozen or so other vacant and bagged eyed travelers that would finally get us into the heart of Oslo.

The bus hummed on in silence for what seemed like hours. The only view of what I had heard to be such a stunning country were the blank spaces of white beneath the streetlights as we trudged down the road.

 

There is that certain uneasy excitement I find when traveling alone, and in the darkened bus, bundled in my blankets of clothes, my stomach wouldn’t stop flipping. I had been used to my own personal brand of culture shock back in France. I had only been there six months, but I was comfortable with the way French words settled in my ears, even if I didn’t understand what was being said at all times. I knew the flow and feel of the city, with it’s slight snow and crowded metros, even if it was still foreign to me. The people dressed in all black, but it was the city of light, of movement and art.

 

But here, everything had been cold, stark and white. The language landed as harsh and pointed. Dirtied snow muddled on the inside corners of every bus stop and metro station, as if just to remind you that no one couldn’t escape the cold, even inside. Your breath was a heavy cloud and your feet and face were constantly wet and rosie.

 

Once there, with freshly made crepes and French pressed coffees, I was perfectly satisfied with having a pseudo France with my Frenchman, seeing the snow fall from the warmth of his apartment. But we slowly felt guilty staying locked inside for so long in a country I had barely seen and ventured out to find the sights.

 

Nothing had impressed me much about Oslo. Maybe a Florida native girl wasn’t supposed to be placed so far north and appreciate it. The only urge I had was to curl back inside that tiny heated apartment, snuggle up under a heap of blankets and wait til morning.

 

We made it to the city’s center. I remember looking at my watch at 3 pm and noticing the sun already half sunk over the horizon, an amber wave across the already street lit snow. The white covered the street so it just seemed like one large whitened sidewalk. There were expensive, albeit adorable, shops and overly priced restaurants nestled tightly together. We would browse around the stores for a minute to get out of the cold and then continue on our way, pretending we had found nothing of interest. Norway has a taste for the high price and neither of us had any desire, or rather abundant ability, to spend 15 dollars on a fast food hamburger. We settled for a cup of hot coffee to warm our fingers and planned all our meals to be homemade.

But we trudged on through the snow, a little lost and a lot hungry. Finally after a few hours of our wandering we made our way upon Frogner Park. The largest park in the city and world famous for it’s Vigeland installation. Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland’s lifework with more than 200 sculptures cast bronze, granite and wrought iron.

 

We walked through, only the sound of the soft crunch beneath our boots, and made our way up to the center, finding a view across it’s entirety. I stood near Vigeland’s Monolith column which was carved from one single granite block, the depiction of humanity being drawn upwards toward heaven sitting heavy on the highest point of the park.

 

Suddenly, It was if I saw the world in black and white hanging inside the rim of that park. The detailed statues were draped in ice and heavy, wet snow. They had darkened to blunt black and that clean snow reflected the sun so forcefully it hurt your eyes to stare at it for too long. The entire park gleamed winter colors as proudly and forcefully as any flower. I inhaled that breath of chokingly cold air and felt like I finally knew what Norway was trying to show me.

That this, this was a different kind a beauty.

 

Norway was preaching that her world was distinct, that she had a lot more to her beauty than so many others easy beaches and warmed sunsets. She was a biting beauty. One more difficult to obtain, to appreciate. But looking out over that park, draped in the crisp clean lines of the snow, trees heavy with powder and nothing but the sound of my breath, I understood her.

 

It’s easy to see beauty from a warm, sunny place on dry land as much as it’s easy to love when there is never conflict. But if you find a love that can survive the cold hearted fight of life with you.. you don’t just have a fling with it, you have a life long love. And, Norway, she was calling to me, shouting through her whitened blankets, “see? I am worth it.” Where your body hurts and your breath is short, yet you still want to stay and stare right into it until your body collapses into the cold.

I stood staring at her until my fingers were numb and my nose runny, but I finally didn’t mind. Later that evening, as I sipped my hot coffee, happily curled back into the warmth of the apartment, nestled near the heater, I couldn’t help but laugh at myself for being such a crank about the cold. Looking out the window, as the snow yet again began to fall, promising myself I wouldn’t forget the raw feeling of this cold beauty. She had won me over, high prices, darkened skies and all. But she was beautiful and fierce and taught you how to love the heavy winter. That was Oslo.

 

——

Candles & Revolutions – or- on relationships

Back in 2011, my sister, her boyfriend and I had been backpacking around Europe. We had made it to Dublin and on our first day we decided to stop in at one of the local grundgy looking pubs around town for a pint because, well obviously we were tourists, and that just sort of the thing you do when you’re in Ireland. One in particular that we came across, looked like a hidden gem near an alley, as cliché and amazing as an Irish pub can get. Thinking it was 3pm on a Tuesday and we could have a drink in peace while looking over our maps and internet connections we decided to try it out. We heaved the creaky door open only to find the entire darkened pub was filled to the brim with every single bearded, cap wearing man in Dublin, all of which, were not quite expecting nor liking the door being slung open revealing every crack and hangover in the old bar into the afternoon sunlight.

We stood in the doorway for what felt like an eternity, backlit with a delicious sunny day and the glares of every Irishman in the pub cast upon us. Have you ever walked into a room where people were obviously just talking a magnificent amount of shit about you seconds prior? Well, I am positive someway, somehow, even never have meeting us before, those Irishmen had just been talking shit about the three of us. The oh, so clearly, American tourists with our torso sized backpacks and sightseeing maps frozen open in my hands. Maybe just add to the imagery the facial distortions of that of a gaggle of high school girls when someone farts in a crowded room…and that’s maybe the best way to describe the glances we were getting from the doorway. My sister and I froze, apparently thinking the best solution was to just stare back at them. But eventually, and miraculously, my now brother in law had the wonderful idea of shutting the door again, taking us out of that deer in the headlights conundrum. It was a very simple move, something that my sister and I would’ve done… eventually, promise.

I hope.

Ryan has always had the refreshing sense of survival not always found in our Matthews’ family. Our family tends to sometimes just freeze and maybe laugh awkwardly in anxiety ridden situations. An essential move I still utilize to this day.

Smile, nod, fake laugh.

It’s a Kendall Classic.

Let’s take my Grandparents house for instance. It’s pristine. It looks and feels the exact same today as it did when I was a kid. The furniture, the carpet, everything. If there is at all any consistency in life, it is I know, in my heart of hearts, that when I enter my grandparents house and take a right into the living room there will be those tiny little Swedish figurines in the exact same stance and order as they were when I was 8 years old and salivating over the thought of playing with them.

In this house there was this candle, see. To my sister and myself as little girls, it was the most beautiful candle in the world. It had delicately, thin twisted ribbons of wax that cascaded down the sides of it in all sorts of shades of blue and green. I mean this was a fucking magic fairy style candle and it stood, never lit and totally untouched, in the center of my Grandmother’s coffee table.

Always.
Perfect.

I think my sister and I stared at it growing up over a million times. Because a pretty candle is just the place your eyes go to as a child when adults are talking boring things, and quite honestly even when you’re one of the adults talking the boring things. Every lull in the conversation or that moment of silence that fills a room before the next topic is brought up, our eyes would land on that candle. My sister, brother, our cousins and I might exchange some sort of one sided I wonder how they make a candle like that shrug type questions and things would move on.

Years later, when we were all teenagers, Valerie brought her then boyfriend Ryan to our Grandparents house for the first time. I remember sitting in the living room, and after the appropriate amount of small talk, the adults ventured into the other room, talking politics or taxes or retirement or honestly I wasn’t listening so I have no clue, but that’s what adults talk about right? After the momentary silence broke over the room as they left, all of us ‘kids’ just sat there, eyes, like always, going straight to that candle.

I made a comment, like all the comments, “I wonder how they put all those different colors in one candle”

My sister shrugged her shoulders. My brother made a “I don’t know” noise.

The usual.

Then all the sudden, Ryan reaches over the table, hand outreached and picks up the candle.

I think I froze mid-yawn. My eyes were as round as orbes, staring at the poor unknowing Ryan, who didn’t know you can’t just go around touching consistent Grandparent candles that always stay put. You’re touching the fairy magic perfect never even lit candle that we’ve never seen anyone touch?

I glanced at Valerie who was looking toward Ryan like he just lifted our actual Grandmother up and basketball spinned her around the living room. My always laid back brother was looking at him and then the candle like he just touched the holy grail. Pretty sure my cousins were staring at my sister like she brought an alien into the household.

The universe was an inch away from splitting, y’all.

He was inspecting the bottom of it to showing all the layers of color underneath “yea, looks like they just layer it one color at a time.”

So casual for just unraveling the dynamic of our granparents house, bro.

All our lives we’ve all been staring at that perfect ass candle and making comments about how it’s made and not one of us ever thought to just pick the damn thing up and look at it. It was kinda a revolutionary moment, guys. Obviously, we had a very difficult and trying childhood.

But that’s always been Ryan. He’s not a talker, he’s a doer. He figures stuff out. If he wants to know how something works, he just ups and goes and finds out how. He doesn’t just talk and shrug about it. He’s a hands on the candle, type o’ guy. Figure it out.

I think it’s been a good influence on our brand of Matthews’ ‘maybe tomorrow’ attitude we used to have as kids. Especially towards my sister, who ten years later and two Bolster kids down, I swear she’s gone from our classic childhood Matthews’ signature of nervous laughter in the face of awkward to a kind of Mega Mom Chief. No more, staring at the candle kind of talk for that one.

She just handles things now.

I once walked in on her with dinner on the stove, laundry going, vacuuming the living room, all while on hold with the phone company, and whislt her young smiling baby was stradling her leg, happy as a fresh clam. Probably out of sheer amazement of all the things her momma could do at once, cause honestly, for me, just the vacuuming part is like a whole weeks worth of effort. To be honest, I don’t even know where my roommate keeps the vacuum in the apartment. I don’t even have an apartment as of right now, I sleep on a couch, and in hotels while traveling for a living… That should give you a small clue to the last time I accomplished that task right there.

I think that’s why people are brought into our lives though. To show us a different way, maybe a better way, of going about things. I’m not saying we wouldn’t have ever picked up that candle and learned for ourselves how it was made. I think we would have, eventually.  And I definitely believe Valerie would’ve been a badass mother either way. Something in her DNA that just clicks with her as a Mom, whereas maybe I got crooked teeth and reddish hair. To be an optimist though, I do like my hair.

But that little bit of candle pickin sass did influence, and as I didn’t know my brother in law before he was with my sister, but I’m hella sure she’s influenced the butt off him in a thousand different ways only he knows.

Those seem to be the best types of relationships, the ones that help you grow and morph into even better Supernova awesome stars of people you already are.

Those are the types of relationships I see and just go, woah.  

Ya just have this wonderful feeling that they are constantly becoming better people for being around each other, the both of them, equally. And that’s always just plain inspiring for humanity, I think.

Back in Ireland, as soon Ryan had tightly sealed the pub again from the monstrosity of the outside world, all the Irishman, beard to beard in solidarity, raised their glass and actually cheered. Valerie and I had gone from frozen messes of awkward to gulping our Guinness’s happily. Relieved that they all seemed to only hate the daylight and not American tourists.
Thanks for the smooth door move, Ryan.

Even if we’re not realizing what we’re learning from others, we constantly are. Even if it’s those minuscule moments of action so small we don’t even realize it.

So pick up the damn candle, folks.
IMG_6440

Jumangi & Ducking

I’ve always had depression.
It’s a part of myself I have had to deal with on a daily basis for as long as I can remember.
I’m writing this because I’m allowing 2018 to be my year of kind honesty. And I think that might be something we’re all craving these days. To be open minded and honest with each other- to maybe not fully understand each other, but put forth the effort to try.
Knowing that whatever your going through,
You are not alone in those feelings.

And with that, maybe we can even begin to notice how trendy negativity has become in our society. How all these memes, shows and reality shows have warped some parts of our brain to think it’s funnier and better to just grab a bottle and say something sassy than to deal with our lives with vulnerability and empowerment? How maybe we can use our words to inspire and empathize with each other to becoming the best versions of ourselves.

All I know is from my own experiences. My depression is thick, sticky, heavy vines in my mind. If I don’t keep them at bay when there are just a few sprouts, it grows out of control like fucking Jumanji and crushes my whole damn sparkly self down, pulling it into that shitty nothing-is-ever-going-to-be-good-again- forest like that damn police offers car in the film.
You can’t just duck and avoid yourself with a Margarita and a back talk sass attack into being a happier human, I should know. I have looooved me some Margs. Plus I duck from people I don’t want to deal with all the time.
Avid duck-er here.
🙋🏻‍♀️
It’s not trendy, but in order to not be Jumanjied I need physical, mental and emotional release. I need to give those vines somewhere to grow.

We’re on this earth together, dealing with the human experience. It’s a roller coaster of a shit storm and, thankfully, endless joy. Maybe if we can talk about the storm and how to handle the massive amounts of nasty shit blowing into our eyes more effectively, we can learn how to adjust our eyes to see the joyous parts more often and together.
💛

Also, all metaphors aside, you should all really go watch the original Jumanji again…just because, well, Mr. Williams will always be number one.

Minty Fresh 2018

Fresh year, Fresh start.

Honestly, I believe any day of any month can be the start of something new, but we like those nice round numbers and starting points, so let go along with it for the sake of january’ s ego, it likes to be number one and resolution central.  

So I meditate with this app called Headspace. It’s a lovely app with adorable illustrations and a relaxing voice to guide you. I highly recommend to anyone, whether seasoned meditator or newbie.

I meditated this morning. As I always have the intent to do because it makes me feel fresh, relaxed, ready for my day. But life tends to derail intentions, doesn’t it? So I hadn’t done it in a while. So, thinking it’s January and it’s time to get back on track, this morning I woke up, poured myself a cup of coffee and sat down with myself.

And my, my, my.

My monkey brain was wrapped so tightly, I couldn’t even focus on focusing on being focused. And then I started thinking about that phrase and how it wasn’t quite right make and maybe I was just not being focused on focusing..or maybe just trying to focus on the focal point.

And then, because I had sillily poured my coffee pre-meditation, I started to hope it would still be hot in ten minutes, and I shouldn’t have poured it til after I did my super awesome great meditation that I will totally do every morning until I die, cause, ya know resolutions work like that. Ya know what, I should stretch too! THAT would make my day extra super yogi special. Like a kale shot directly into my arm, kinda like Popeye but without the gross pipe. Why did he have a pipe anyway? Why not just a cigarette, was he smoking weed in that thing? Maybe he was more chill than I thought. Especially since he only ate spinach and was just smoking pot all day long. Woah. Popeye was actually a chill, fairly healthy dude.

SHIT.

FOCUS ON THE FOCUSING.

This continued for a lovely ten minutes.

I write this because I’ve noticed that when I’ve told people I meditate they tend to think that I’m somehow glowingly, yogi perfect at it and I can shut my brain off like a light switch and only think about unseasoned kale and world peace or something…and erm, i don’t even like kale, guys. And this is certainly not how I’ve found it to go.

I realize that meditation is like brushing your teeth. Just once isn’t really going to help you with overall health. Although it still freshens you up a bit. And doing it all the time will make a huge difference, but you might not even notice until you stop and realize how crusty it gets in there…

So I try to Colgate my sparkly minty fresh mind, every now and then, even if I think about Popeye for a majority of it.

Here’s again to 2018. A nice round number that, if we allow it, will be minty fresh with experience.

 

Shades of Beige and Heavy Sighs -or- On Jobs

“You headin’ home?” she politely asked me as I heaved my suitcase into the overhead bin. As a senior flight attendant, she had mastered the airline etiquette of speaking with other employee standbys. Smiling sweetly, but with the glazed over eyes of 6am and an underlying wave of I don’t really care. But still, she was surface nice, and that’s more than some ever are, let alone before coffee and the boarding doors shut.

I slammed my fingernail under the weight of my roller bag and bent back a large chunk,
Shit. I thought.
“Yea, just commuting” I peeped, biting my lip in mild pain.

A little lie.
Not for the purpose of hiding anything, just easier than explaining that I was the newbie to the industry and still on reserve as a new flight attendant.

I technically don’t live anywhere at the moment. While working, I spend my days flying around, staying in the hotels the airline provides. On my days off, I bounce around from the couches to air mattresses of friends and sometimes, if time off allows, back to my family in Florida. Today I had only two days off work, so I was boarding a flight to Denver, staying with one of my best friends just for the evening. I’d hop another flight back to San Francisco tomorrow and be back on call the following morning at 3am for another block of five days. I rent a bed in what’s called a “crash pad” near my base airport in San Francisco. So on the nights I don’t have a trip lined up for that set of work days, I sleep surrounded by bunks and the coming and goings of twelve other flights attendants and pilots. All airline folks, all with other places they call home. Planes start to feel like part of the office, in that recycled air, sometimes slightly turbulent nauseous sort of way, but, hey, the view is always spot on.

Every job I’ve ever had has been because of travel. One way or another that’s what it’s come down to. I have either been saving for travels or overseas teaching and nannying. It was no surprise to most when I took a job as a flight attendant. I was usually searching for that next destination. That new place. And with this job, the benefits allow me as much travel as I can manage on my somewhat sad budget and ability to go without sleep.

So far dealing with the transition of becoming a flight attendant has been a complete lifestyle change. Every now and then I catch a glimpse of myself in a shiny surface in one of the many glossy airports you can see me trailing my suitcase through, and don’t recognize myself. In uniform, with all the details pinned just so and a smile plastered on with face. A completely different life than when I carried out my days in yoga pants, teaching and meditating with my students.

It’s been interesting. In the good ways and the less than fun ways.

I find that Interesting is one of those words people like to use when they don’t want to say things like difficult or maybe even boring. Honesty being the best policy and all, it’s true for me as well.

Not that I don’t enjoy the many benefits of my job, I do. I love that I don’t sit in an office day in and day out. I love having the financial independence that this job allows me and the ability to hop on a plane to wherever I feel like seeing. But when it comes to the actual job, sometimes boring and difficult just come with the territory, and that’s for most jobs.  

Sometimes I try to imagine those words like boring and difficult into actual people, humanizing the bothersome duo. Seeing them as just the abrupt old shitty childhood friends of interesting.

Boring is the guy in the beige polo and slightly different shade of khakis, monotonously throwing words together like ‘corporate’ and ‘revisions.’  As well as repeatedly, and poorly, recounting the story of how him and his wife got engaged for ‘logical tax purposes.’ He probably carries around his own soap in a ziplock bag too. Just because “you can never be too careful…”

Difficult, though, she’s the gal with the orange spray tan and resting bitch face that taps her manicured nails on her Yeti tumbler. Every time you open your mouth she heaves a long sigh and rolls her eyes. She never has shit to add to the positive, but always has a complaint about the temperature of the room.

I’d rather have someone sneeze directly into my face than hang out with them.

But as they are, the annoying duo, difficult and boring, usually lead you, annoyances and all, directly toward where good ole interesting is relaxing. Cuddled with a book and a thin lipped wine glass, ready to discuss and laugh at his annoying childhood friends that almost lead you astray from your goal and from him. Sometimes you’re friends with people just because you’ve been friends with them for so long, right?

That’s what I’ve have been feeling about my new job as I shuffle through my first few months working in the corporate world. A world I’ve never so much as tiptoed around in before. Hell I haven’t even glanced in the direction of it.

So far, it’s a lot of sleeping upright in chairs with your phone on the max volume glued to your hand, waiting for scheduling to call you for a trip. It’s days sitting alone in a hotel room next to an airport while you’re on call. Becoming a packing goddess and knowing how to dress in the same clothes repeatedly while making them seem like separate outfits. It might mean not having a place to call home but a variety of places in the country to stay while you have days off, and the ability to get there, cost free. And it’s definitely ignoring jet lag and the not so rare outburst of a passenger. Guests who are in full belief that hurling through the sky at 30,000 feet is a burden to their day and not a miraculous journey across the country, in less time than most of us spend binge watching Netflix.

For me, a huge portion of it is the camaraderie of the airline world. Seeing someone who you’ve known since training or maybe have never met before, but in the same slightly wrinkled uniform, bags under their eyes, barely shuffling through the terminal, and when you lock eyes you just know how the other feels.

We are a team.

We all do this job for different reasons. But mostly, and maybe obviously, it’s for our own travel. It’s the benefits we can’t quite give up having, even when we’ve worked a 26 hour shift and don’t remember what day it is or what city we’re in that night. Places to visit become actual do to lists. Commuting doesn’t mean from the suburbs in a car, but from another state or country.

My father gave me Gibran’s ‘The Prophet’ when I was in High School. But I don’t think I opened myself up to listening to it’s beautifully written verses until much after, typical angsty teen I was. Much like a long poem, it delves into almost meditations on different aspects of life. I’ve read it so many times now I can’t begin to count. One section in particular is pointed around the questions of life and purpose.

Because as many beautiful moments that come up on social media, I know people struggle in the same mundane ways every day simple trying to balance the ‘everydayness’ of our lives. No one is casually typing their status updates as “Same old day, different year.. is this what I’m going to be doing til I succumb to death and old age?”
I would hope not, anyway.

No..it’s usually a much more flowery quote on motivation or how amazing their hubby is. It’s natural to exclaim the positive, and I totally get it. Yet, it’s vital to understand that no one is alone in these sometimes less than movie like plot points of life. 

The difficult part of daily life and my job isn’t the level of skill is takes, to me it’s the opposite. It’s the redundancy that’s difficult, the day by day of the same steps. It’s not just this job either, it’s many and most. Difficult is everywhere, sighing and whining daily in 9-5 offices about how the florescent light makes her look pale. Boring is tailing along, sipping his decaf coffee and muttering to himself about his credit card rates.

Best to ignore them, but they do tend to get under the skin. Especially when all of your friends on Instagram seem to be constantly on vacation, sipping margaritas.

So there is the question, do you become passionate with your life? Throw caution to the wind going after that illogical, somewhat financially unstable, career with lustrous eyes. Or to look more logically at your adulthood and situation within reason, boring and difficult-side-by-side. In my experience, and I’m sure with countless others, it’s a spiraling tornado of debate. Usually ending up with me drinking wine and rewatching old episodes of “Friends” trying to ignore the analysis of real life.

Because why can’t all of us have jobs that afford luxurious lofts in NYC without ever actually working. That gets in the way of drinking copious amounts of coffee from giant mugs, right?

That’s adulthood.

Please?

The truth is reason and passion must coincide in life. We need both equally, the yin to the yang. The good cop to your bad cop. My wine to my yoga. Those two, not quite unlike boring and difficult, are hopelessly together for the long haul, essential ingredients to a satisfying life.

Annoying, I know. Yet they each make the other possible.

Maybe to lead a good life we need to simply accept ourselves as a paradox. That one part of you is simply a small piece of the puzzle that leads to who you are at your best self. That combination of passion and reason.

You need both.

You crave both.

Because as much as I felt satisfied teaching and learning with yoga, for example. Unfortunately my wallet never felt the same. I found it unfair to force all that financial responsibility to such a wonderful lifestyle and it’s teachings. I wanted to teach and learn, not focus on paying my bills by it. Sometimes I would look at my schedule and it would loose all luster, just for a moment, as the negativity of cash signs and payments loomed over my brow.  So I took a job as a flight attendant, what at the time I thought was going to be the perfect combination of travel and health insurance.

It’s interesting. But, of course, like codependent dipshits, difficult and boring, aren’t ever far behind.

After two hours of flying the senior flight attendant was now apple cheeked, presumably filled with her normal levels caffeine. She smiled more genuinely toward everyone as we deplaned in Denver,  as she casually stood next to her own luggage, waiting to leave work herself.

“Have a good time at home,” she chirped as she saw me walking through the aisle. I thanked her and promised I would, as I tugged my luggage onto the jet bridge.

Close enough, I thought.

I don’t know what this lifestyle means to my future yet, all these paradoxes flying around. Is this career something I’ll continue for years or maybe just something that will occupy my time until I find something a little more, settling…

Who knows, really. I don’t even know what day of the week it is most of the time, if I’m being honest.

But I will, one day.

Not always as romantic as it sounds but I do try to trust the process. I believe the universe has something in store beyond the regular storybook outline, for everyone. As long as they determine that they want it that way. That you’re willing to deal with both sides of the spectrum, the passionate colors as well as the dull beiges, all shades of adulthood. Throw that vibration out into the universe until something amazing bounces right back at you. Just don’t expect never to see all of interesting’s friends along the way. Maybe even becoming friends with them as well.

Because as much as I don’t want to start wearing top to toe beige or constantly complaining about the temperature, maybe I can shoot the shit with those two for a few minutes every now and then to get where I want to be.

Gibran writes:

For reason, ruling alone, is a force confining; and passion, unattended, is a flame that burns to its own destruction. Therefore let your soul exalt your reason to the height of passion; that it may sing; And let it direct your passion with reason, that your passion may live through its own daily resurrection, and like the phoenix rise above its own ashes.