As individuals, we are all amazingly complicated and complex. We can be enormously confident in some situations and turn to jelly in others, be extrovert and outgoing around our family and friends and painfully shy with those we don’t know.
One of these complexities for me is that I love change….. Really love it. Being stuck in the same routine is like a death sentence (Maybe that’s a little melodramatic but I’m not keen on humdrum). Unexpected occurrences are great, but only when I’m in control of them! Yep definite control freak tendencies there!
You know, like when it snows overnight without warning and you look out of the window to be met with a blanket of beauty and you can decide if you want to get your old wellies out and go tramping around in the freezing cold or snuggle by the window with a good book.
If on the other hand it snows and I have to go out in it as I have NO choice that’s a whole different matter.
Getting rid of this “control freak tendency” of mine is an ongoing process. Over the last 10 years I have made some great steps towards changing. I’ve found it beneficial when you embrace the unexpected without trying to control it and here’s why;
1. It doesn’t matter whether you embrace it or not, the change is happening. So the choice is, embrace it and get the very best out of the situation or resist it and make it hard on yourself.
2. They are a great learning opportunity. It’s not always going to be something you wanted to learn and it may make things difficult for you. This doesn’t mean you won’t benefit from the experience.
Look for the positive, even when it’s really hard to find. Life is so much easier when you reach for the positive and let go of the negative, it helps you find your inner peace which results in you dealing with difficult situations more effectively
3. Opportunities arise from unexpected situations. This is exciting, having an open mind and taking advantage of unanticipated occurrences can lead you on a path you would never have trodden, experience life in a whole new way and meet people that would never have entered your life.
4. Loving each change reduces the fear of being out of control. Your whole mentality switches and fear is replaced by anticipation of good things. Life just feels better.
So with this in mind you would think my week of unexpecteds would have gone smoothly…… Does it ever? well rarely.
This, I have to say, is totally my fault.
I know all of the benefits of embracing these moments but if I’m being absolutely honest I haven’t quite mastered it yet. So when my first situation presented itself I went into “The panic” state which always focuses on EVERYTHING I can think of that is negative.
Great news mom – we’re going to foster cats!
Wow what a greeting that was!
What happened to” Hi mom how’s your day been?” or “I’m home… What’s for tea?”
You know the normal stuff you say when you get home from a day at work.
The sheer joy of speaking to the rescue center wiped all other thoughts clean out of her head. Hannah burst into the house, so excited, I think she may have forgotten she hadn’t mentioned this marvelous plan to either me or Charlotte before this precise second.
To say I was taken back at this moment is an understatement! and you know that practice of embracing the unexpected …Well ……. I forgot it completely!
I replaced it with …What if we want to go away? what if it gets sick?what if it’s really aggressive? what if? what if? what if?
Not one single what if was positive!
Apparently she had been looking into it and researching it for some time and felt passionately about it.
It made perfect sense, we have always been animal lovers. The plight of animals in need never fails to affect us.
We adopted rabbits. Guinea pigs, rats and cats (not all at the same time of course) when the girls were young and loved everyone of them.
They were part of our family and gave us so much in return. When our last cat died of old age a few years ago we had decided not to have anymore as we were really busy and didn’t feel it was fair to bring a new pet home.
Then we changed our business and freed up loads of time.
Hannah who loves cats, OK it’s not just Hannah I have to admit we all love cats, was prepared to take on the most of the responsibility (not that, that will happen! It’s going to be me with the cat for the majority of the time as I work from home, so we all know how this is going to pan out).
There is a complete support system in place, you have the choice whether to foster any particular cat and if you are going on holiday there is someone who will take the cat while you are away. In addition, they supply you with the food and bedding required until the cat finds their forever home.
In the meantime we have the pleasure of looking after a cat who needs a short term place to live and be loved.
It’s a great idea, shame I didn’t see this straight away. In my defense in only took me about an hour of pondering to figure out that this in fact was an amazing idea.
So they are coming round to check us out on Tuesday and fingers crossed we pass. Not sure now whose more excited now, me or Hannah.
It’s going to snow – have we got a spare bed?
So the morning after the cat declaration I’m sitting in my slightly chaotic living room /office, surrounded by materials working on my next piece of art work when I get the phone call.
“Mom it’s going to snow so Colin and Helen are going to sleep on the cafe floor tonight as they may not get in tomorrow if they don’t”
It sent chills down my spine just thinking about it! Of course we had a spare bed and we would love them to stay over. Apart from anything else they are great company.
So it was a quick menu change from a full on meat eaters meal to vegetarian, change the bed sheets, run hoover round and move the artistic chaos then we’re ready to go.
Don’t you always find those impromptu socials are the best and this turned out to be no different. A great evening with great company, great wine (provided by Helen and Colin) and great conversation.
Friday Night’s Bon Jovi Night
The rest of the week sauntered along nicely, everyone just doing there thing. Then at 6.30 on Friday night Charlotte arrived home and declared
“Stop cooking quick! We’ve got tickets to see a Bon Jovi tribute band in the Arts Center, you’ve got half an hour to get ready”
Now in my younger days this would not have been a problem, but at 54 it takes me way more than half an hour to look anything like presentable. But with the lure of a concert in front of me I was giving it my best shot. Amazingly half an hour later I scooted down the stairs feeling fab and not looking too bad, and we were off.
Now I know Tribute bands can be a bit hit-and-miss so my expectations were not to high but I was still looking forward to it. After Schnapps and Lemonade (not my usual tipple but refreshing and quite acceptable) we entered.
Going back to my youth when all rock concerts were standing I was gutted to find us all seated.
Never the less I was still optimistic.
Then they came on and started. They rocked it from the first chord and within a couple of numbers we were all on our feet hands in the air and feeling as if I was 20 again. Then in the interval to make the evening perfect we bumped into some of our closest friends. It couldn’t get any better (unless the real Bon Jovi appeared of course…which they didn’t)
It’s better than I remember
Saturday went back to normal and then on Sunday something very strange happened. Unexpected in a completely different way but unexpected nonetheless.
I was working as usual in the living room but on the weekends it’s the family room. I usually work while life goes on around me. On this particular Sunday Hannah decided to have a pyjama day and had the insatiable urge to watch the Twilight films from start to finish.
My heart sank, I remembered these the first time round and really disliked them.
So much so I’ve avoided them ever since.
No problem I thought at least they’re not going to distract me and I’m going to get masses of work done.
You probably know what’s coming next…. Yep I got pulled in.
They’re so super cheesy, but by the afternoon I’d closed the computer and was sitting with wine and nibbles under a throw on the sofa with my daughter thoroughly enjoying the Twilight Sagas.
Who would have though it!
And that was it. Nothing spectacular but plenty of unexpecteds’. All of the unexpected events made it into a fabulous week. Seems I’m learning to embrace them after all. Roll on the next batch let’s see what life has to offer, I’m up for it.