Ever heard of Murphy’s Law? You can sum it up with two sayings.
When it rains, it pours.
Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
You’ve probably experienced good ol’ Murphy’s Law a few times in your life. You might even be feeling the pressure of Murphy right now.
I had a visit from Murphy himself last night. Ironically enough, it was only three days after I posted about How to Stop Running on E.
My shift ended at 8 o’clock p.m., but there was an epic thunderstorm with little visibility and multiple tornado warnings. Since my commute is an hour long, I decided to wait it out.
I left the building at 8:35 and sprinted to my car (that was in the far corner of the parking lot). Normally traffic is cleared by the time I leave work, but there was bumper to bumper as far as the eye could see.
My radio started to flicker on and off. Then, my speedometer and RPM meter stopped working. And after that, my car began to jolt and run like it was already in neutral.
Granted, I drive an older car (a 1999 two door Honda Civic to be exact), but she had never done this before.
I was still 20 minutes from home.
I felt like I was reading The Little Engine That Could to my son (I know it by heart at this point). I patted the dashboard, trying to give my car some words of encouragement as if that were going to get me home.
She stalled out in the middle lane of a major road at 9:30 at night. At this point my hazards weren’t even working.
People were in a rush, as they always are in the Northern Virginia area. My car being in the middle of traffic was a real inconvenience to everyone’s night.
My initial reaction was to rest my head on the steering wheel, start hysterically crying, and pray someone would just come rescue me.
But that lasted all of two seconds.
I put her in neutral, got out, and started pushing the car all by my damn self. A few crazy things happened.
Dozens of cars drove by without stopping. Some had cell phones out recording me pushing my car (I know pretty awesome…). Some were cursing me out for not having my hazards on as if I’m some idiot that doesn’t know protocol. And some people gawked… and I’ll call it “complimented” me on my assets.
After I had pushed about 50 yards, a 55-60 year old man came to help. We pushed about fifty more yards into a parking spot at the closest shopping center where I waited for my husband.
“Ironic that I just published a post on How to Stop Running on E?” I asked. With a grin and a shrug he replied, “Didn’t even think about it, but yeah pretty ironic”. He continued, “But, I’m happy you’re okay and surprised you’re not hysterical right now”. He knew I had a long day at work and our new schedules have been a huge adjustment for me. “What good would that do?” I replied.
We were both zombies when the tow truck finally showed up at 11:30. The truck pulled ol’ girl away, and we went home. It all ended just like that.
Why am I sharing this story with you?
For a few reasons.
It is really ironic that this happened after I released my last post because so many of the ideas were applied to this scenario.
This entire situation was really out of my control, so expending energy in unnecessary places was a total waste.
1.) I had no control over the weather.
2.) I had no way of knowing if and when my car was going to break down.
3.) I had no way of controlling how people were going to respond to what happened.
When everything was over with, I got to thinking.
The absolute only thing I had complete control over was my response. That was it
I could have just sat there frozen, panicking, hoping and praying for someone to help.
But I didn’t.
I pushed. I did everything in my power to get myself in a better situation.
One of the other realizations to come out of this, was that people just don’t care. How many people drove by, and how many people actually helped? You have to be able and willing to push for yourself (but… more on that in a later post).
Maybe this story seems a little silly and unrealistic. That’s okay.
Read between the lines and think more in depth about these miniscule or monumental events that take place in your own life.
It’s easy to play victim to Murphy’s Law. And when you do that, you keep yourself under Murphy’s rain cloud.
So, what’s the solution?
Keep pushing. Grind it out.
How long can you truly sustain constant thunderstorms and rain clouds?