Lessons of a Bad Day
You know that book, “Alexander, And the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day?” Well, the other day I had one of those. We all do, so I don’t count myself as special because my turn was up to have a subpar day. No, what made this day different was some of the realizations I had. At first, I wondered if the day I had was so atrocious that any tidbits of goodness that came out of it just appeared brighter compared to the dismal day. But after some time of reflection, I realized there is a plus side to having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.
Okay, this first thing is going to sound petty, but I am going to start here because this is where my first awakening happened. Every day I stop by a local store for something. And every day, I am met by a very rude cashier. She doesn’t say a word during the entire transaction, not “hello” “goodbye” or “take a hike.” She throws my stuff in a bag and with not so much of a grunt, cold stares me until I just take my possessions and go, wondering what her deal is. On the morning of the forementioned junk-day, I decided to give it right back to her. I know, not the most mature course of action, but I put aside my normal cheery attempts at conversation with her and I went silent. She kept looking at me like, “why aren’t you annoying me with your chit-chat?” The next time I was in there, after I had recovered from my “day,” she was nice. Lesson here? Sometimes you just have to give people what you are given so they can see how it feels.
Next realization I came to about having a dreadful day, is out of nowhere, hope arises. In the midst of my day, chockful of tears and deep fears I was ruining my child’s life (he’s a teen so I hear this a lot) my best friend from high school, whom I have not spoken to in a couple of years, sent me a Facebook message. I cannot tell you the astonishment I felt when I opened my phone and there it was, “Hi hon, I miss and love you so much.” I could not believe that in my moment of darkness, the universe sent me just what I needed. Call it what you will, I call it divine intervention, but my entire perspective changed in that moment. What were the odds she would reach out just when I needed special encouragement? Things like that only happen on an unbelievably bad day.
Here’s what else happened on my awful day, I got a ton of stuff done. I had been avoiding many mundane work tasks, and getting a school ready by cleaning, sorting, organizing, and purging has been on the backburner. But on my no-good day, I needed a distraction, so I worked through my to-do list, item by item. I put myself on autopilot and just got it done. A couple of things happened. As I felt buoyed by the work I had done, the problems that were contributing to my no-good day diminished a little.
I hope if you are having a difficult day that you can find some ribbons of light and hope also. I’m not saying take your frustrations out on a store clerk, which I did not do, but take the feelings you have at hand and put them to work for you. Take a walk, clean out a closet, get your hair done, or anything that takes you out of the center of your rotten day. Call or reach out to an old friend. You could be the reason their day turns around in a happy way. And remember, even a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day doesn’t last forever.
Photos courtesy of Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day Facebook page.