What to do when Bad Luck Happens


Ducks behind the 8-ballI just got back from a two week vacation in Mexico. It was heavenly. Really relaxing and really fun.

As we started to come back though, sh*t started to happen! My husband caught the stomach flu just hours before our flight. He was in rough shape. Then the winds prevented our last plane from being able to leave on time. By the time we landed, it was 1:00 AM, my son thought he was getting sick too and was crying and crying.

Shortly after we woke up the following day, we got a call that my step-son was in an accident during gym. We spent all day at the dentist and the hospital while they worked on his broken teeth and wrist.

We had to postpone our return to work while my son had another day off from school.

The following morning as I drove on the highway to work, my car broke down. My cell wasn’t working. I had to walk back to town to a gas station and call for help. My timing belt was broken. It would take 5 hours labour minimum to get it fixed and more than $600. I had to postpone my return to work once more.

Sh*t Happens

The way I see it, bad luck just happens sometimes. There’s no rhyme or reason for it, it just is what it is. But I do have some choices in how I let it influence me.

As luck would have it, my husband’s stomach flu only lasted 24 hours. It certainly could’ve been a lot worse! My son wasn’t getting sick, he was just plain tired. A really good sleep helped a lot. And he wasn’t sad he had to miss school! He was thrilled to get to have some time with his brother and the dentist’s administrator spoiled him rotten!

My step-son handled the casting and the tooth repair really well, despite it seeming to me like it would be quite painful. He joked with the medical staff and made the best of it. I was really proud of him.

My car broke down on the highway but very close to town. It took only 10 minutes to walk to a gas station. I was pretty fortunate! The repair shop that I took my car to had had two cancelations that morning so they got to work on it right away. Another stroke of luck! In the end they didn’t have to order the whole timing belt kit so I saved some money. And the tow truck service man was so nice he drove me home from the repair shop. It was great to meet such a nice person!

What’s the Lesson?

Did I want all this stuff to happen? No. But it did. Stuff like that can happen from time-to-time. I could wallow and ask why me? I could bitterly complain that that was a horrible end to a great holiday.

I don’t see it that way. I think it was a good thing that I was feeling so relaxed when this stuff started to happen because I could take it all in stride. I was able to see each thing for what it was–a bit annoying perhaps–but not a big deal.

I can judge things that happen in my life as awful and be devastated by them, or I can acknowledge them and find a more helpful way to move past them. I choose the latter.

How about you? What do you do when bad luck happens?