All week I've had in mind the topic for this blog, and then Thursday happened. We all have those days. Generally it's Monday that turns on us, but sometimes it's that unassuming weekday. If you've ever surfed the cable channels late at night you might have run across a dessert survival show, or an episode of what-to-do-if-you're-trapped-in-your-car-during-a-blizzard. My personal favorite is how to survive a grizzly bear attack. No where though I have seen the resource I needed this week. So to save you from the fate the befell me I have compiled the "When Thursdays Attack Survival Guide!". (Let that echo in your head for a moment for the full effect.)
I'll use my Thursday as an example for how to deal with days that don't play nice. The day began simply enough, I ruined my daughter's life by giving her socks that weren't completely dry. I would go on to turn her Thursday against her by packing the wrong kind of crackers in her lunch, but I digress. This is not a story of bad mothering, I'll save that for another blog. Really the day started to turn ugly with a wardrobe malfunction. For those of you not familiar with women's suits, quite often the jackets, unlike men's, are meant to be worn as a top with just a shell underneath. A shell is a light weight, often sleeveless, partial shirt that is just meant to show at the collar of the jacket. While making breakfast Thursday morning I hadn't put my suit jacket on for fear of projectile pancake batter coming my way and when the bus came I put my coat on over the shell just to take the kids out to the bus stop. It was so frosty and cold that morning I didn't take the coat off when I came back inside to gather up my things. Do you see where this is going? After driving the hour and forty minutes to get to my first office of the day the weather had warmed to a balmy fifty degrees. Grabbing for my suit jacket I found nothing, because it was still nicely folded on the back of my sofa, at home. There's no way to wear the shell with out a jacket so I was stuck in a three-quarter length wool coat and I have a lunch meeting.
This is the first important point of the survival plan, how to handle the first disaster of the day. Your reaction here sets the tone for the rest of your day. There are three ways you can go. The first is sheer panic, a fight or flight response that is usually the most ridiculous. In this case my thought was to call someone and have them meet me halfway with my jacket, because that's a great use of everyone's time. Next, your brain begins to work in overdrive. This solution may be functional, but is it necessary. I would go to the mall and buy a new jacket! How hard could it be to quickly match up two shades of black and find something at a reasonable price. I know we have a new budget, but after all this is an urgent situation. The third option is the healthiest, but may be hard for some to adopt. It has been a challenge for me in the new year. Looking at the ceiling of my car, I smiled. Won't this be a great breaking the ice story at lunch. That is the number one key of surviving a weekday attack, smile at the problems. Just like grumpy people problems are undone by smiles, they lose their hold on you when you're happy. Beware though, if you're under attack the problems will multiply regardless of your smiles. You've just begun the war.
On to the next battle of "Did that just really happen?" Also known as "Nobody would believe me if I told them" moments. Pushing through my Thursday morning I arrived at my lunch appointment to find the break room a toasty seventy-five degrees. Just keep smiling. There is also a very adorable dog begging to be let out of her crate. You would be surprised how many dogs I see in doctors offices. Never cats. Once a parrot, and sometimes fish, but never cats. Anyone that knows me well knows that I am deathly allergic to dogs. No exaggeration, one lick and I break out into hives. So I scratch this little cuties ears through the cage and wash my hands ready for lunch to begin. Not five minutes later the doctor comes in, gets the dog out of her cage and rubs and kisses on her like he's giving raspberries to a dust mop. With out skipping a beat he reaches out to shake my hand and thank me for coming. I'm stuck. It would be completely rude to get up and wash my hands. So the whole time he's eating his lunch and we're discussing medications I have dog dander and slobber on my hand. It's itching and burning like I'm wearing a poison ivy glove, not to mention the dripping faucet my nose has become. All while still wearing my wool coat.
Now with out a survival guide I might have chosen to wallow in my distress and sulked the rest of the day, maybe even purchasing a large ice cream creation. I'm not saying that ice cream is still not a viable option when you are being attacked by a weekday, but consider other avenues first. I got back to my car, turned the air conditioning on and laughed at the absolute absurdity of the situation. How can this not be funny? Of all the things obstacles we are trained to overcome in sales dog slobber is not on the list. Bring it Thursday I will not be undone.
Lastly you will be assaulted with public humiliation. The final salt in the wound. My last stop of the day, the only thing keeping me from heading home. I'm chatting with the receptionist when my sleeve caught on the basket of twenty pens and slid it off the counter top. I caught it in mid air. Boo-ya! Take that Thursday. Smug in my victory I sweep to the door. Halfway across the waiting room my shoe falls off. Oh, Come on! I'm already a good two steps past it by the time I come to a hopping stop. For a split second I think about leaving it, but I love this pair too much. Retrieving the shoe I say to the half full room "And that's the kind of day I'm having." The polite group had been pretending to read their magazines, but they chuckled freely now. One lady offered "At least you didn't break the heal." And a kindly gentlemen opened the door for me.
There in lies the last weapon against a miserable day. Sharing with others. Not only did I give them a little humor, I gave them the opportunity to be kind. So there you go Thursday. You kicked and fought and tried to hold me down. I smiled and laughed and helped others do the same. Maybe you weren't such a bad day after all.