February 18, 2014

Be Inspired

This weekend, I did a little Q&A over at one of my new favorite blogs, Avoiding Atrophy.  She asked me who/what inspired me.  Why is that question so difficult?  I could say something that I feel would be a little cliche like Gandhi - duh, he inspires everyone.  So instead, I answered "everyone." Well, I used more words than that, but that was the best answer I could come up with.

Once I hit send on my email to her, I thought about that answer and decided to spend my Friday morning taking notes on the things that inspired me in the Kansas City airport.  Literally, middle America at 5:30 AM the day after winter storm Pax cancelled nearly every flight in and out of the east coast.

I just sat and observed what was happening around me.

source
On the shuttle from the hotel, there was a dad that was desperate to get home to see his daughter's dance recital.  No complaints that those recitals are 85 hours long, he was just genuinely excited to see his daughter perform and take her out for pancakes on Saturday morning.  Engaged parents = inspiring.

In the security line, an elderly woman gets selected for random screening by TSA.  She's pretty confused on what is happening and I quietly watched the TSA agent explain the whole process to her and show her exactly what was going to happen and why they did that.  She was happy to do what they needed her to do once she understood.  Patient TSA agents = inspiring.

A middle aged woman sitting next to me in the terminal laughing super loud about her convention that week.  She had stayed at the big end of the meeting party until after midnight dancing the night away.  She said it's been a while since she let loose like that, but she can't wait to do it again.  Then she showed me the disco ball necklace she was still wearing.  Hungover dancing queen excited for round 2 = inspiring.

A 3rd grader going to New York City for his first time ever with this parents.  It sounded like he had memorized every trivia book about skyscrapers that you can find on the shelves.  He was most excited about getting to the top of the Empire State Building.  Smart, excited kids = inspiring.

I could go on for a while, but I'll get to my point.  When it came time to board my plane, I had such an awareness of the people surrounding me.  My flight was overbooked and they needed volunteers to give up their seats.  It was Valentine's Day and there weren't any other flight options open until 12 hours later.  Up at the ticket counter was a couple that looked frantic, but I wasn't sure the story.  I watched a solider head up to the counter and volunteer his seat.  The couple started to get really excited.

I couldn't just sit there, so I went up to the counter to see what the deal was.  In the end, I walked away with an airline voucher and a ticket on a different airline for that evening.  It turns out that couple had their flights cancelled the day before due to the storm and they were trying to get on a cruise ship to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary… and it was Valentine's Day.

The little tiny woman pretty much attacked me with a hug.  She was beyond excited that they would be able to get on this flight and hopefully make their connection in Philly to get to Florida to jump aboard the Love Boat cruise ship and sail away to happiness.

This whole series of events made my day so much better even though I was possibly sitting in the KC airport for 12 hours.  The couple celebrating 40 YEARS of marriage = inspiring.  The solider returning from deployment that gave up his seat to hang out in KC one more day = inspiring.  

The story ends really well because I ended up getting on a flight a few hours later thanks to standby and I made it home around the same time - voucher in hand.

I really feel like I challenged myself to be inspired by everyone and I walked away having one of the best days ever.  Coincidence?  Maybe, but I'm definitely going to do this more often.

source
What inspires you?

15 comments:

  1. steph, this is such a beautiful post. it's not everyday that we take the time to step outside of our busy lives to see what's happening around us. i love that you did this! and so sweet of you to give up your seat for that couple.

    -kathy | Vodka and Soda

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm not going to lie, I teared up at this post. A lot of people don't take the time to look at the inspiration around them. I love your RAK moment, it was definitely inspiring!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Reading this definitely gave me chills! Thank you so much for sharing such a beautiful story. I am also one that tends to be very observant, and you do see so many, often entertaining, encounters or conversations. It's nice to take a step back even more to see what can inspire us if only we take the time to look/listen!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Getting all choked up over here, Steph. Your posts always make my day and inspire me! Way to be awesome and give up your seat in the name of looove.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beautiful post! I love sitting in airports and looking around at those around you. It's amazing to find things to be inspired about in that situation.

    And good for you for giving up your seat- you made that couples whole day (probably year since they would have missed their cruise).

    ReplyDelete
  6. Great post, and great reminder to stop and see the world around us. So awesome you gave up your seat for that couple and on Valentine's day, no less. Your concious effort to see and appreciate the good in each day really is inspiring to me! Thanks for that and for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wah that made me tear up that you and the soldier got them on their way.

    Observing people is one of my very favorite things to do. It gives me so many thoughts on life in general.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Damn it, I just teared up. Pregnancy hormones are no joke!

    ReplyDelete
  9. You serious have a heart of gold. And what an awesome way to look at things for a day. Everyone should try this at least once - blog post or not.

    ReplyDelete
  10. You are seriously the sweetest person ever. I got goosebumps... that couple will never forget what you did for them! :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. This post is inspiring! Girl you have such a good heart and clearly karma rewarded you for it. I love the reminder to spend a little more time observing the small moments of inspiration around us. :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Such a great post that I really enjoyed reading. So many little things like that around us can inspire. You did a good thing when most others would not. I also solute that soldier for being so unselfish. Good job!

    ReplyDelete
  13. This was so beautiful and inspiring! It is so powerful to just stop, watch, and listen. I read until the end and loved every bit of it.
    You're a great writer. :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love you!!! This post just made my night. You never cease to amaze me!!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love you!!! This post just made my night. You never cease to amaze me!!!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for reading my ramblings. It makes my heart happy.