Midsummer 2013 -- My Luck is Pretty Good Luck
Yesterday a landscape design guy was at my house to give me a bid on sprucing up my back yard. We'd gone over my wish list and he'd written down each item and what it would cost. (No waiting for a formal bid from this guy, apparently!) As you might guess, my reaction to the total amount wasn't, "Oh boy, that’s a deal! Let’s start tomorrow!" Instead, I took a big gulp and said I had to talk to a few other people and I'd get back to him.
On the way out, he noticed my huge potted Pencil Plant (Euphorbia tirucalli, for you botanists out there) and commented that it didn't look good. I knew. I've been watching it drop "leaves" over the past few months and hadn't gotten around to researching the
problem. A quick digital inspection of the soil told him it was simply too dry. Oh, and that it would look much better if I trimmed off one of its huge branches, and I could stick the branch right in the dirt and it would likely thrive as its own new plant. Now, this is a
15-foot tall, probably 200-pound plant with a toxic, milky sap that is an extreme skin and eye irritant. It can even cause shortness of breath for some people, I've read, and a trip to the ER isn't unheard of. I've always been careful when dealing with the plant, but what he was suggesting virtually ensured the loss of a lot of sap and the need for lots of "protection." Plus a lot more muscle than I have.
I tell this story because what happened next was a wake-up call for me. Still somewhat reeling from his bid, I casually asked,"Would you throw trimming and sticking the limb back in the soil into the deal? With my luck…." -- and I was going to say I'd end up blind
or with my skinned burned off. But I stopped myself after saying, "With my luck…." and followed it with, "never mind, I have awfully good luck, really." (I don't mean "win the lottery" kind of luck, but rather "life is usually pretty good" kind of luck. Basically, I know I've got nothing to complain about.) He smiled and said, yes, he'd throw that little job into the deal.
It's so easy to use the "With my luck" card, for some reason. I guess it's because we lose perspective about what's really worth getting upset about. The niggling irritants of daily life can take up residence in our thoughts and emotions and we turn on ourselves, convinced
we are basically victims, when in fact, in the grand scheme of things, things are pretty easy for most of us. Five minutes of hearing world news should pretty much make us dance in the street at how fortunate most of us are. So the next time you're tempted to say, "With my luck…," you might want to complete the sentence with, "everything will probably turn out just fine." It's quite liberating!