Keep Calm and Keep Writing

Shit happens. On Tuesday night I was supposed to flying to Prague for a 6-day holiday with my two oldest and dearest friends. This plan, a celebration of our entrance into our 40s, had taken two years of planning and hoping. Instead of checking in for my flight, I was at the airline counter canceling my flight. My husband had to fly to Mumbai to attend to his hospitalized mother leaving no one to care for our kids, so I had to cancel my plans. As I said, shit happens.

I spent the next two days feeling out of place. It was unreal; I was supposed to be in Prague eating tredlnik and drinking pilsner beers and not packing school lunches and arguing with grumpy 7-year olds. As my friends posted pictures of their Prague experiences, I felt their restraint. My husband promised a holiday in Europe soon. But it is not the holiday or the city that is important, it is the time spent with friends. The time to make new memories and share experiences that keep decades-old friendships going. What I felt is a sense of loss. And this feeling of just plain sadness was a new experience and I needed to learn some coping mechanisms quickly. I guess this is what I have to look forward to in my 40s – acknowledging my emotions and finding healthy ways to deal with them.

The very next morning I played tennis with my coach. Whacking tennis balls never felt so good. Then I signed up for a 4-week exercise and nutrition programme and went grocery shopping. The next day I exchanged the pair of boots I had bought specially for the trip for a pair of grey suede sling backs with studded block heels. I reached out to my sisters and made plans with friends. And no ‘getting over’ plan can be without bingeing on Netflix (Breaking Bad in my case), and ice cream (yay! for home-made sundaes). I baked bread; kneading the shit out of dough is good for the soul. Especially when you double the recipe. In a week’s time, I expect to be feeling real again. In the meantime, I keep calm and write on.

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