Wednesday my hubby dropped me off curbside at the kahului airport in Maui.
After a tearful goodbye from my son and a kiss on my sleeping daughter’s cheek, I was off.
I did self check in, handed my bag off to be checked in and away I went to the gate. Gate 7 to Los Angeles.
I walked leisurely to the gate. Found a seat and then tweeted my excitement for taking off to Blogher. After an hour and a tearful phonecall with my husband and a few tweets saying I was homesick (i.e. emotional) already, they started to board. I was in the 6th group to board.
They called group 1, then group 2 then they said “ok, the rest of you.”
Knowing I was in the front of the plane I was going to wait but instead followed the herd (mooooo) and lined up as they let us on. I got up to the ticket agent and that’s when my trip really started…
With an “umm, hmmm, let’s see” from the ticket agent, I spoke up “To Los Angeles right?”
Ticket agent: “Yes, but this is Delta, you are on American. At gate 23. That’s on the other side of the airport. It leaves in 10 minutes.”
And with that, I booked it as fast I could, carrying my very very, filled-to-the-brim bag on my shoulder. I pushed myself as hard as I could, thinking of the dreaded possibility that I had or was about to miss my flight. My mind rushed to my husband, who had just returned home with two sleeping kids, having to wake them to come get me. Me missing all of Thursday in Chicago and trying to find another flight. ugh.
I pushed and pushed and ripped my flips flops off so I could run faster. I passed at lightening speed, gate 19, gate 20, gate 21, gate 22…all the while the clock was ticking. I came around the corner to gate 23 just as they were closing the doors. Screaming “WAIT! SIR! I am on that plane!” He abandoned the doors, took my ticket and let me on to the plane.
Still breathing at an intensely rapid rate and my heart beating fast I felt I still wasn’t in the clear until I set foot into that plane. As I got closer and saw the door to the plane still open, it happened.
Bam! Splat! ME! Flat out, laid out on the floor. My bag came crashing down. My knees took the brunt of the impact with my hands next, so as to save me from literally doing a face-plant.
I think I let out a groan followed by a cry for help. It all happened so fast. I bounced up to my feet faster than a football receiver, I had to get to the goal…that plane!
The male flight attendant, came towards me. I burst out in tears. It was all too much. That fall put me over the edge. I had been sitting, like a jackass at the wrong gate. I ran like the wind with people looking at me and wondering, “what the hell?” and then I crashed. Both physically and emotionally.
The tears just started flowing. The flight attendant, held onto my one shoulder and looked at me, tears flowing out of my eyes, chest puffing in and out with each gasp for air (and sanity) and he said, “Are you ok.”
Through the tears I was able to list what I had gone through… “I just fell. I was at the wrong gate, I ran all the way here and and and”…I just cried. I mean, really cried.
He then said, “there’s got to be something else that’s going on in your life to have this happen” (I believe meaning my tearfest)
Random, here I was having a therapy session with my gay flight attendant. But hey, I guess I needed it.
I answered in a crackle “I’m leaving my family.”
He answered, “well there you go!”
And with that new found knowledge, he continued.. “Now, you have to get on this plane and you are the last to board. So in one minute you will have an audience of everyone that is sitting it their seats looking at you. You can’t let them see you like this. Now dry your eyes, take a breath.”
I did as he said. We cracked some joke. I did what actors do before filming and ran my hand over my face as if to clear away the emotion so I could “go on stage” as I entered the plane.
“Now there you go” the very sweet flight attendant said. I do believe he wiped a tear off of my face. oh my god.
And he said, “Are you ok?” Yes I replied. “Breathe” he said. I took a deep breathe and he said, “Now go”.
I walked with both feet firmly on the ground and entered the plane. Sure enough all eyes were on me. I smiled as if I was just wanting to be fashionably late. Found my seat (thank god it was close to the front) and tried for 20 minutes to hold back tears.
I thought to myself…I know I wanted a trip to Blogher . But this was SOOOOOOOO NOT what I had in mind.
And then I heard…
“Flight attendants, prepare for take off.”
And with that, I was on my way. A tad bruised, a tad battered and ever so thankful to that very sweet flight attendant.
more to come from Blogher…stay tuned!