Sometimes, everything feels off. You’re not sick, you’re not really tired, nothing is wrong with your day. But you feel odd. You feel like you thought there was an extra step on the stairway. And that feeling can last for hours, days, or even longer. For me, it’s been all week long. It started with an assignment. A paper that I had to write. I wrote it and rewrote it. I rewrote it four times in four days. I just couldn’t get the words out. Nothing. I mean, there were words. But they weren’t any good. And I don’t mean the self-criticizing kind of not-good, where you’re just being really hard on yourself. This was actually just a really, really bad paper. I knew it, and I knew it wasn’t going to get better. So I wrote up to the minimum number of pages and turned it in, knowing that it’s going to receive a low grade. I’ve also been off at work. Like today when I spilled iced coffee as I was trying to pour it into the urn on the counter. Most of it went down the side of the urn onto the counter, onto a register, and all over the floor. Great.
Later I was making drinks, and I dropped at least three of them. Maybe six. I’m not sure. The number varies depending on who you’re talking to. But it was a lot of them. In addition to that, I’d also dropped two, yeah two, big boxes full of tiny little dipping sauces. The sauces scattered, the box was practically upside down, and then I stepped on one of the sauces and popped it all over the floor.
The topper of the week was as I was riding my bike to school, and about a block away I realized that my back tire was flat. No problem, I thought, I’ll just ride over to the place on campus that fixes bikes. It took a few minutes, but they got my tire fixed, and I rolled away to class. Well, on the way back home at the exact same spot, my tire was flat again. Great. So I decided it was time to phone a friend. And thank God I have good friends. So I got a ride back to my car and was just afraid to go anywhere else after that.
So, it wasn’t anything huge that made my week a bad one, it was just a ton of little things that wouldn’t stop happening. I have never been happier to come home and just sit down on a Friday afternoon. All week I have been moping about these things. It just has not been my week at all. And I understand that it happens sometimes. I even had a feeling that, being so accident prone this week, maybe I shouldn’t bike to class and should just drive. But I did it anyway. And, flat tire. Twice. So, maybe I should have listened to my gut. But on the way home, I just kept going over and over all of the things that had happened this week in my head. I kept replaying each thing, and repeating to myself, “This was just not my week. This week was so crappy.” I even told this to my friends who asked how my week had been. I had completely convinced myself that this week was crap, that I was done, and that I just needed to go home.
But on the way home, I heard a story on the radio. The DJs were talking about a father who’s wife had to be rushed to the hospital for an emergency C-section, where she then died. This man’s son was also dying. This little newborn boy held on for four days. The whole time his father was singing to him. A Beatle’s song. And sitting there in my car at a red light, I thought, How silly it seems to be upset about some spilled coffee and a flat tire. Those things, though they can be frustrating, are so, so incredibly tiny. They’re so small. They don’t deserve to occupy that much of my mind and thoughts and time. They don’t deserve my attention after they’re done and over with. I’m home now. I have a warm, comfy couch to come sit on. The dishes are dirty, but I have running water to clean them with. I’m sweaty from biking, but again I have clean, running water to shower in. I have a flat, but I have a very nice bike to ride to school on, and even if we don’t have money to fix it right away, we will be able to fix it. It’s not a real concern. Nobody went to the hospital, I’m not injured, I have a wonderful husband who’s coming home for dinner tonight, we both have jobs that allow us to provide for ourselves, my son is healthy and happy and loved, I have food that I can make for dinner even if it’s not very well planned, and I have brownies. Like, what’s better than brownies? Really? (I’m totally not eating one right now…)
Ultimately, I have so much to be thankful for, all day and every day.
There’s just so many other things that could have happened. There are so many other, bigger, much better reasons to call your week crappy, but having one flat tire and spilling some drinks are not them. I know it can be frustrating. But maybe there really is something to the old saying, “No use crying over spilled milk.” Or coffee either. It sounds cliche, and I’m cringing a little as I type these words, but 90% of the time it really is all in how you look at it.