When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Or lemon juice for a salad. Or mix them with oranges for a zesty fruit salad. Either way, you choose what to do with those lemons that come flying your way.
That’s just it. One of the most certain things about life is the uncertainty in it. You will be dealt cards you weren’t expecting and you will face challenges you didn’t see coming. Life is full of surprises, both good and bad. It’s up to you to decide how to react to them.
I was intensely reminded of this the past week as plenty of lemons came flying my way.
It started with a broken dishwasher that wasn’t repairable. This was promptly followed by a leaking kettle. Then came the humming and trembling microwave. Clearly the kitchen wanted me out. I listened and left.
Then, I enter my study. I start changing the batteries on the fairy lights that hang on a shelf above my desk. I accidentally push one of my crystal rocks off the shelf and its sharpest corner lands bang on in the middle of my iPhone screen lying innocently on the desk. The screen cracks to a hundred pieces. I look at it in horror.
Yet, I carry on changing the batteries on the fairy lights. I might as well finish what I started. As I turn the lights on again, there is a spark followed by burning smoke. I open the battery compartment and the motherboard has burnt. It’s dead. Pants. I give up and walk out of the study.
Next, I adventure outside into the garden. Maybe nature is still on my side. I do some therapeutic trimming of the lavender bed on front of our patio and of the wisteria that’s blossomed over the last few weeks of spring. I’m smiling. Though not for long. I notice I’ve accidentally trimmed one of the wisteria roots. Sh*t.
I walk back inside, defeated. I grab my laptop and go sit on the sofa. Maybe I’ll write this bad luck out of me. Except the laptop won’t turn on. It’s fully charged yet it won’t turn on. I plug it back on the power cable and it still won’t turn on. Sh*t sh*t sh*t. Panic kicks in.
This is a true story. I genuinely felt like I was part of some comedy skit for a day or two. And all I can do is laugh about it all. Because why not? Crying won’t make me feel any better. Yet, exercising my positivity muscles certainly does. As I did exactly that, I was reminded of all the silver linings of my clumsy week.
For starters, the dishwasher is ten years old so it’s due to be replaced. I already found a few options online that are on sale. The microwave is also ancient so it was coming. Same goes for the kettle. The fairy lights cost €10 so it’s not the end of the world either and they have lasted flawlessly for four years.
My iPhone is also four years old and I’ve been meaning to get a new phone for months as my UK mobile contract is ending and I want to start a new one here in France. The thing that had been holding me back was that I didn’t like the new bigger iPhones that lack the home screen button. Imagine my delight when I discovered the 2nd generation iPhone SE. It has just been released with all the technology of the new iPhones yet it’s smaller, cheaper, and got the home screen button I crave! Better yet, I’ve sold two of my designer bags over the last four weeks so I’ve already got the spare cash for it. If that’s not meant to be I don’t know what is.
The laptop crashing could have been bad but 99% of my work is backed up both in the cloud and on an external hard drive. Yes, I have two backups, I like to air on the side of caution. I also managed to get the laptop working again after a lot of googling and troubleshooting so I’ve backed up the remaining 1% and been able to write this rambling newsletter to you. In all honesty, it’s been on my shopping list for about two years as it’s eight years old now and has been a little temperamental for a while.
The wisteria root could have been bad, but, fortunately, there are 10 wisteria roots, so, hopefully, this one wasn’t too important. I also didn’t cut it fully as I noticed it was the wrong one when I was trimming it so it might still survive. I’ve also ordered some plant repair tape to put on it to promote healing. This means I’ve also learned one more thing about gardening: that plant repair tape exists.
So, all in all, it wasn’t that bad of a week after all. Yes, it was a bit intense with most of this happening in the course of 24 hours but I enjoyed the challenging opportunity to practice my positivity muscles. I am also taking it as a sign from the universe to stop doing so much. This is in line with last week’s thoughts (i.e. my “doing fatigue”) but clearly the universe is telling me I’m still trying to do too much. So I will listen.
So, there you have it. These are some real-life behind-the-scenes details from the home of the sometimes clumsy Happyologist.
I hope it’s reminded you that when life gives you lemons you can choose what to do with them. I highly recommend lemonade though I also enjoy a good juggle.