I was beyond ecstatic to head to the Bahamas for Christmas with my dad. While visions of palm-trees danced in my head, the Universe had other intentions. I flew into Atlanta the night before we were to fly out. The following day (Christmas Eve), my dad and I arrived at the Atlanta airport ready for our adventure. Never mind the fact that it was 6 in the morning and the line to check our bags was ridiculously long. We were headed to the freakin’ Bahamas!! Nothing was going to stand in the way of how excited I was for this, or so I thought.
I learned just how very wrong I was. There were torrential downpours, thunderstorms, and flash flood warnings that day. Our gate was slowly filling up with people milling about as flights were continually delayed, ours included. It was delayed until late morning, then early afternoon, late afternoon and finally…it was CANCELLED. I can’t lie; I was heartbroken. My dad could see it in my face and there were eventually a few tears. It was supposed to be our father/daughter time together and I was completely bummed in thinking that we were just going to turn around and head back to Alabama. But, my dad made a plan just like he always does. We went to the customer service line and it took us an hour to get to the front because so many flights had been cancelled.
They finally ended up getting us on a flight and when we landed in the Bahamas without luggage, well I was not a happy camper again. I don’t want to get into the details of the numerous phone calls we made in trying to track down our luggage (which eventually ended up arriving the next day). I don’t want to make this a woe-is-me story and while it was one of the more stressful flying experiences I’ve encountered, the precious days I did have with my dad were awesome. The resort, though busy, was beautiful. And overall, it was time with my dad I’ll always cherish. Here is my takeaway from all of this:
- Stop planning. Seriously. Obviously you have to make plans overall but don’t ever think that things will go YOUR way just because said plans were made. Because, really there is no your way. There’s just….now. There’s just however things play out. We are not in control of as much as we’d like to believe. The sooner I realized that, the less stressed I became.
- Things can’t replace memories. Looking back, I was so upset about not having my “essentials,” instead of just rolling with the punches and enjoying where I was at. I was in the Bahamas!! And I couldn’t see the sand for the palm trees. Don’t be that person. (Also, it is super important to have the basics in your carry-on! I know that for future travel now.)
- Laugh about it. The more the day wore on, the more hilarious my dad and I found the whole situation. We were eventually able to make light of it and find humor in the craziness of it all.
- Find a place of gratitude. We are allowed to have feelings and I find that they are mostly justified. It can be unhealthy to stay in that place though. Recognize those feelings for what they are, the situation for what it is, and eventually move on. Try to find some good where you can. Even a tiny moment of thankfulness can bring surprising benefits. All will work out in the end, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the moment.
- Patience is hard. Ah yes, this one. I struggle with this the most (especially when I’m driving). I am generally pretty level-headed but those times where I have to do a great deal of waiting can make me anxious. This is why I always have a book and some calming music (*cough, cough*….Explosions in the Sky) when I travel. Distractions help, whether it’s getting lost in a book or music. Find your thing and focus on that. Waiting is part of life and getting upset with those around you won’t change that.
Now, here’s some more pictures from the beautiful Bahamas. Enjoy friends and wishing you all a beautiful weekend!