I was supposed to meet my cousins at Disneyland last night. I haven’t seen them in a really long time, they’re in town, so I braved the traffic and after work drove down to Disneyland. Where I discovered that I couldn’t actually get into the park itself because it happened to be a black-out day on my pass. It hadn’t even occurred to me that I needed to check blackout days – it was a Thursday night after all – but there you have it. So I drove for three hours round trip to give them a hug outside of the main gate and chat for half an hour. Not exactly the evening that I had imagined, but it turns out, that it was exactly what I had needed – perspective.
This could have easily ruined my night, and after the rough week that I’ve had at work I’m honestly kind of proud of myself that it didn’t. Let’s face it, it was an EPIC Disneyland fail and there was no one to blame but myself. But you know what, it gave me time to decompress. For two hours driving through rush hour traffic I was present, I was in the moment. I wasn’t worrying about my to-do list at home, I wasn’t worrying about work or all of things that I need to cram into my weekend and accomplish. I drove. I changed lanes, I accelerated, I applied the brakes and I listened to music. I was blissfully disconnected from everything except for the immediate presence of the traffic around me. Yes, I did just use the word blissful in a sentence describing LA traffic and yes I am probably crazy, but the jury’s still out on that one! Then I got to catch up, commiserate with family that I wouldn’t have had a chance to see otherwise. It was short and not at all as planned, but it was novel and novelty has a charm unto itself.
One of my favorite movies is “Grosse Pointe Blank” and one of the characters talks about Shakabuku. “It’s a swift, spiritual kick to the head that alters your reality forever.” Now I’m not saying that my reality has been altered forever, but I feel like last night was my Shakabuku – kick to the head/LA traffic, yep that’s a much more accurate description. I spend way too much time planning and working through all of the possible outcomes of a given scenario instead of simply living. Taking the world on as it comes, making the best of what I am given and accepting the outcome. I don’t need to think out ten different scenarios of how a situation may turn out because that’s nine scenarios that will never exist outside of my own head – assuming of course that one of those ten is what actually happens. What a huge waste of time!
So new goal: embrace my Shakabuku. Let go of the incessant planning and worrying and live right here, right now. After all, the best laid plans generally go awry anyway. Oh, and go to the library and get an audiobook. A good audiobook would have totally rocked last night!