I love that as I get older, I learn to see the humor in situations that I wouldn’t have seen years ago. I have (and I would argue many of us have) the fantastic power to flip a frustrating situation into a comical story and ultimately a funny memory to share with others later.
Let me give an example. I was on an airplane to London. My husband was up in business, and I was back in economy seating. I felt like I was on a Seinfeld episode I saw years ago: Elaine is stuck in the back of the plane with no food and terrible seatmates, and Jerry is in business class eating ice cream with a model.
I was Elaine, only with a horrible headache that put a damper on my whole mood. As I saw the eager couple coming down the aisle toward me, I was hoping they weren’t my future seat mates. But silly me. Of course, they were. They were super vivacious and the type of people that were so busy enjoying and enlarging their personal space that they ate up mine. Like a tiny tornado, they whirled around me arranging their luggage in the overhead bins and tossing carry-on pieces in the seats. Once they situated themselves as comfortably as they could in our cramped seating, off came the shoes and out came the London guidebook. Their first language wasn’t English, and I know this because they spoke to each other. Very. Loudly.
I wanted to scream.
But I didn’t. Because suddenly the absurdity of the situation hit me, and I wanted to giggle. What were the odds? So many quiet people on the plane, and me and my aching head got to sit by them. On top of that, the enthusiasm, preciseness, and clarity with which they spoke reminded me of a foreign language instructor tediously teaching students pronunciation. I soon found myself fascinated as I listened to the cadence of their voices dramatically rise and fall.
It was incredibly frustrating, but I couldn’t NOT see the humor in it.
And as I age, I find myself doing this more and more: realizing along with everyone else that the richness of life is not made from not just the happy situations, but the sad, angry and incredibly irritating situations (the makings of entertaining dinner stories). Some people describe it like a song – the highs and lows make the melody interesting, and similarly make the hours interesting, the days interesting – and the whole experience of aging interesting.
Creator of Love, Auntie.