When Things Don’t Go As Planned…

When Things Don't Go As Planned...

I am a serial planner. I’m one of the few people under 50 who still uses a physical planner and writes everything down because it makes me feel secure and organized. One thing I found in my beautiful planner recently was an appointment I had made two months ago.

I was scheduled to get my spider veins injected to make them disappear. It’s an annual thing I do to make myself feel better before summer… although honestly I’m not quite sure why I do it since I try to cover as much as my body as possible when sitting at the pool. But, it makes me feel slightly more confident about my see-through legs.

Today was my vein day.

The place where I’ve been doing this for years is about an hour and 15 minutes away from my home. It takes up my entire morning; I take my kids to school then jump on the highway and deal with morning rush hour — get about 90 injections (I know, that’s a lot) then get back in my car and trek to work. I go to this particular place because I seem to have the best result with them.

I had a slight thought in the back of my head and wondered if I should confirm this appointment since it was made so long ago, but I shrugged it off because I never confirm this appointment and honestly I didn’t feel like calling them. (Ignoring intuition… that’s another blog.)

I started the routine; took my kids to school, jumped on the highway, handled a number of rush hour clogs, then got to the vein place just 3 minutes late. As I walked into the office I could feel how quiet it was. The normal receptionist was replaced by someone else, who seemed very surprised to see me. Red flag!

“I have an appointment at 10,” I said.
“Oh, you do? What is your name? Our computer crashed and our phones aren’t working… I didn’t think we had any appointments this morning,” she stammered.

Instantly, I was frustrated and pissed off. I did a scan of the office and could tell even if they wanted to squeeze me in, there was absolutely no one there to do it. “You mean I drove for nearly an hour and a half for nothing? Is the doctor here? Or the nurse?” I could hear myself getting angry… it didn’t sound like me at all.

She went on to explain again how my name and appointment weren’t in the system, how the computers weren’t working because of a storm, and how she could call the nurse who lives nearby, but her wi-fi phone wasn’t working.

If steam could be seen coming out of someone’s ears, steam would be coming out of my ears. As I watched myself and felt myself fill up with frustration — I quickly remembered first step of healing… acceptance.

I asked myself, “What do I need to accept here?” I accepted the fact that I was pissed off. It was not an attractive feeling. I judged myself, it wasn’t something I thought a life coach or mindful person would have… but I certainly was having it and it wasn’t going away if I didn’t accept it first.

“You came here before, right?” she asked as she was still trying to find me in the system. I just wanted her to find someone to inject my spider veins.

“What an idiot,” I thought. Red flag! Not being mindful! “No.” I snapped. “I’ve never let anyone touch my face here. Ever. I’ve only come here for veins.”

As I watched my angry self grow, I realized the more I stood there and resisted the fact that there was no one there to do the procedure, the more pissed off I would get, and the harder it would be to get into peace. So, I went back to acceptance. I closed my eyes, took a deep breath and relaxed my shoulders. “It’s okay, I have to go now. Maybe this is a sign I need to find someone else closer to my home.”

I turned my back and walked out.

I Had to Accept What was Happening.

As I walked to my car I was checking myself… and I had to keep accepting over and over that indeed was angry. My head, my ego, whatever you want to call it, kept wanting to feed that anger… kept wanting to remind me how I wasted my whole morning, wasted a quarter tank of gas, how I could have been working on my book, cleaning my house, having lunch with the few friends I have but never had time for, how stupid I am to drive so far for spider veins!

As my head went there, that other part of me, my higher self, reminded me to do the work, saying: “I accept that I am pissed off. I accept that I’m judging myself for even being angry. I accept that I’m judging myself for having this appointment, for not calling to confirm, for being human.”

Then… once I accepted it, I went to positive. I tried to find any crumb of positivity… “I could still be productive and go to the nearest mall and buy my son’s birthday gift. Then this won’t be a waste of time.” So, that’s what I did. I bought his birthday gift. Which gave me enough time to jump back on the highway and head to work.

I was pretty proud of myself for not having a meltdown and for handling this little bump in the road so well. Just as I was congratulating myself for accepting this mishap and accepting my subsequent anger… the universe said, “Oh, please Lynn. You think you got this down? Well, let’s see how you handle a nice, big, fat traffic jam on the highway!”

Yup. Halfway to work the highway was closed down. Another opportunity to accept! Yippee!!

For some reason, this was a bit easier to accept. I was parked on the highway and there was nothing I could do about it other than accept and go to positive. “Well, I won’t have time to pick up lunch, but thank God I didn’t get into an accident myself.”

Eventually, traffic cleared giving me enough time to get to work on time. Me and my spider veins.

Acceptance Can be Difficult, but Practice is Important

Acceptance certainly sounds simple enough, but it’s not always easy to practice. And if you’re like me, you may need a few hours of practice accepting what is, over and over, so you can get to the next step — which is choosing a different thought or in my case going to positive.

So, apparently, I spent over 2 hours in my car so I could get a chance to practice accepting my negative feelings, releasing them, then going to positive thoughts.

Thanks, spider veins.
I accept you.

Till I make another appointment.

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Lynn Martinez is a life coach, messenger and motivational speaker who gives women the tools to change old patterns of guilt, blame and fear — and turn them into new patterns that bring about positive change. Twitter: @Advice4LifeLynn

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