Just a stranger on a plane

Sometimes you meet someone for a brief moment in time that influences your life. Maybe just a small thought can lead to an almost immeasurable change in life’s course which over time can lead to measurable inspiration towards positive growth. Every day life is my classroom.  

I struck a conversation with the 60 year old man next to me, just a stranger on a plane.  

I tend to seek advice from older men. Maybe because in my life good advice is so lacking. This week my dad gave me a bit of advice. I was on the phone with my mom and he had to interrupt to tell me something important. I’ll try to make it as PG-13 as I can. He said something like try to have as much sex as you can. Wow, dad, thanks for the words of wisdom! As I mentioned previously, my husband Paul doesn’t have a dad. He has a step-dad Darryl. Darryl has two grown sons, both spent a great deal of their adult life in prison. So, I’ll pass on the parenting advice…thanks anyway, Darryl.

So I seek out any words of wisdom I can find from a knowledgeable older man. I seek the lifetime accumulation of nuggets of gold. I also find that older men tend to gravitate towards me. They talk to me candidly about things I could use some wise guidance on, like parenting. Things they did right and things they learned from being wrong. 

About parenting, he said that the first ten years of your child’s life are physically exhausting. From 10 to 20 years of age, parenting is emotionally exhausting. Then from 20 to 30, parenting is financially exhausting. I thought about how true his words were. He didn’t give me a clue about what things are like after 30 though. Probably because his oldest was turning 30. By the time my kids turn 30 I probably would have forgotten anyway.

I told him how much I worry about my kids. He told me that he was glad to hear that I knew what I needed to improve upon. Hmmm, what an interesting concept.

What does worry do for me anyway? 

It shows me how little control I have.

It takes away my joy.

How is anything going to change if I worry? Do I need the solution for everything that could go wrong? Do I need to have the answer for every ‘what if’ scenario that plays out in my mind? Will that somehow magically give me peace if the worst case scenario really happens? 

I am going to try to worry less. 

It has always been a struggle for me..

Just a few thoughts from a stranger on a plane. 

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