Amy Rees Anderson

I wouldn’t trade it for a thing

“Your best stories will come from your struggles. The seeds of your success are in your failures. You praises will be birthed from your pains. Keep standing. I have never seen a storm last forever. Seasons change. BE ENCOURAGED!”

This past week my son and his wife decided to take a trip to Mississippi to visit friends they knew from the time they served missions there. This was the very first trip that these two kids were planning and booking and taking a trip all by themselves. The day they flew out I checked with them and they said everything was handled. But that night I first got a text from my son letting me know that the hotel they booked on Expedia was for a different city than the one they flew into. He let me know his wife was really upset as she had booked it herself . Next I got was a call from my daughter-in-law. She was frustrated and upset and as she told me what was happening she began to cry. I told her that it was all going to be okay – after all, “think of the great story they will have to tell people later” I pointed out to her. She was certain she had booked it correctly online. I let her know that once an assistant booked me on a flight to Panama City Florida when I was supposed to be going to Panama City Panama – I let her know that all it takes is making a mistake like this once and she will never make that same mistake again, so it’s a good learning experience.  I could tell she was still struggling so I told her I was going to email her a past blog story that told about a trip our family took to Hawaii several years back. I told her to read the story and let me know if it helped. Here is the story I shared:

Sunday, April 24, 2011

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…

Last week I had some time off to spend with my family. We had a crazy experience on our trip where anything that could go wrong went wrong. I will try to share the cliff notes version with all of you: It started when we were loading the car to head to the airport. My husband weighted the bags to find that my son`s bag weighed 75 pounds!?! We opened his suitcase only to discover that he had packed the entire xbox gaming system with all the controllers and games in his suitcase! For the love! We almost missed our flight because we had to unpack and repack his bags, all the time listening to him say how close he was to making it on vacation with his xbox…

At the airport my daughter walked into a glass door and her brother who was walking obliviously behind her just about followed her into it. Luckily she wasn’t injured. When we picked up the rental car they had the wrong car reserved. When we got to the hotel they had our room reservation wrong. My husband then went to park the car in the hotel garage while we waited in the lobby and he ended up lost for over 30 minutes wandering around the parking garage looking for a hotel entrance door, so me and the kids ended up having to haul all of the bags ourselves to the room. Up in our room the TV and the fan wouldn’t work. When we went to leave the hotel parking garage, the key in the rental car broke off and the car alarm went off every time we opened the car door. Then my husband ended up locked inside the car and couldn’t open the door or the alarm would go off again – I was standing outside the car and tried to call his cell so we could communicate with him inside the car only to discover that he had forgotten his cell phone up in the hotel room. We finally got him out of the car and went to the nearby mall to get dinner only to get lost in the mall while trying to find the restaurant. When we finally found it and ordered our food, my husband looked down at his half eaten plate only to find that there was another person’s half eaten taco mixed in with his food (sick). When we returned back to the hotel my husband realized he had left his credit card back at the restaurant….and all of this happened in the first 24 hours of the trip! As the week went on my husband lost his wedding ring (for the third time now…) while swimming in the lagoon. And the last day of the trip as we went to return the rental car, my husband realized that he had lost the rental car keys somewhere around the resort property so we spent hours searching for lost car keys. Then my son ran into a fire hydrant on accident right in front of a tour bus (again, not paying attention to where he was walking) and hurt his knee. And finally we missed the firework show our last night by literally twenty seconds. Yes, our vacation was a comedy of errors and mishaps, but as my daughter posted on her facebook page “I WOULDN’T TRADE IT FOR A THING! :)”

The fact is that despite everything that went wrong on our trip we had a great time as a family just getting through the mishaps and laughing about them together. We were reminded of the quote I have shared before which states “Life isn’t about avoiding the storms; It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” Well dance in the rain we did last week and I am certain we will remember our trip for a very long time to come.

—–(end of 2011 post)

After she finished reading the story my daughter-in-law texted me “That is hilarious. I about died laughing.”

Then my son texted me and said, “You’re the best mom! She can’t stop laughing at this blog! You seriously fixed everything! I owe you huge!”

Who knew my terrible vacation experience would turn out to someday help my son and his wife through their tough experience?!  And someday I guarantee the two of them will be able to their trip story with their own children to help them as well….it all happens for a reason….so the next time something goes wrong just remember that someday you will be able to help someone you love because you went through this.  And if you are lucky that person you love will tell you “you’re the best” and make your whole day too! 🙂

~Amy Rees Anderson

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