It had been one of those weeks.
All was not particularly happy at Average Towers. A couple of bad parenting judgements. A difficult anniversary to get through. Loved ones grappling with thorny issues that I was unable to help with but persisted in fretting over.
Too many days had been spent sitting indoors hunched over a laptop. Both brain and body had become sluggish. My relaxed skinny jeans felt anything but.
As the week plodded on, the Scottish weather decided to come out in sympathy. It was early evening as the four of us drove through the city and, in the words of Winnie the Pooh, the rain rain rain came down down down.
I looked out of the car window bleakly, wondering if I might muster up some negative remark about the conditions. And then I noticed two things that stopped me in my tracks. A female runner on the pavement was striding out at full pace, soaked to the skin and beaming. A bike with a wicker basket was propped up against the gate of a cottage at the road side. These seemingly everyday sights oozed optimism. There were at least two people in this city who weren't letting the weather get them down.
Which brings me slowly to my point. We all have to deal with blips and upsets - and not just in terms of the weather. No matter how idyllic others' lifestyles might seem on social media, everyone has their crosses to bear and their rough patches to cope with.
And so I reached a bit of a crossroads. It had been a pants week but I could feel sorry for myself and hope for a miracle, or get a grip and deal with it. And so I did (and I still am). I found the strength to have some important conversations; I knuckled down and cleared out some of the physical and emotional clutter. And I forced myself out into the fresh air because exercise and the great outdoors are fantastic weapons against malaise. I also reminded myself to look outward rather than inward. Compared to those suffering in war-torn countries my life is a dream come true.
The whole scenario - and the onset of our traditional Scottish summertime weather - brought to mind one of my favourite sayings. (I'm sure you'll have heard it before as it's plastered over many a canvas and pinterest board.)
"Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about learning to dance in the rain."
I still consider myself a novice but the rain dancing lessons are well underway.
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