This morning, I asked my mom a question. I said, “I know people always tell you to stay positive. But how do you do that when every signal points to things not working out? How do you protect yourself from disappointment but also stay optimistic?”
For the first time in my life, she didn’t quite have an answer.
In the time since I blogged last, plenty of crappy things have happened, turning the emotional roller coaster into a virtual landslide. We fell out of contract on our house, lost a second offer, lost the house in Gilroy that we were buying, and a project I’ve been working on for two years at work was postponed due to budget constraints.
Through all this, I have made every attempt to be as positive as humanly possible, which you guys know is a stretch for me. I tend to be the pessimist. The person to poke holes in ideas in order to test their strength. The Debbie Downer. But I told myself—and my family—that this time was going to be different. That after the crazy year we’ve had, perhaps we were owed a little good luck. And despite bumps in the road, things seemed to be moving in the right direction.
But the Garofoli luck had to have its way. What is Garofoli luck? It’s a black cloud that seems to hover over 2/3 of the Garofoli family (that’s my dad’s side) and it’s something that I’ve unfortunately seemed to have inherited. We all say that my Uncle John, who was born first, took all the luck with him.
Two nights ago, in the midst of all this drama, my mom sent me a text saying that my uncle had won a buttload of money on a scratch ticket. Like…an obscene amount of money for a scratch ticket. Guys, I’m psyched if I win $40 on a scratch ticket. That’s happened to me one time in my life.
When I got the text, I started cackling like a mad witch brewing an evil potion. Of-fucking-COURSE he did, I thought, and though my first initial feeling was one of despair (because why can’t we win money on a scratch ticket??), a second, more powerful feeling took over. I let go, because my uncle deserves all the good luck that comes his way. Then I began to truly laugh—like really, really laugh. My luck is now so bad it’s comical. If the Universe wants to have a good laugh at my expense, I may as well laugh with it.
I imagine it goes a little something like this:
Universe: Hey, hey. Watch this. I just made her second buyer back out of the deal. Remember how she flipped out on the couch and threw that huge hissy fit last time?
Universe’s buddy, Parallel Universe: Oh, man. You’re bad. I let her have this one. She’s now happily moving into her new place. Though you might be right, she’s acting a little smug now. Like she thinks things are never going to go wrong again.
Universe: Oh, we can’t have that. I’m gonna fix that scratch ticket for her uncle.
Parallel Universe: Dude! You and that uncle! Hahahaha, okay this is going to be pretty funny. I’m watching.
Universe and Parallel Universe peer down to see Wendy doubled over in a fit of laughter. She doesn’t appear to be distressed…unless she’s crossed over into full crazy. They’re not quite sure.
Universe: I dunno, do you think I went too far this time?
Parallel Universe: Nah, I think she can handle it. Look, she’s laughing! I think you should give another one of her friends a book deal (and not her).
Universe: Ooooooh-ho-HO! Good one, my brother.
But even if that happens, you know what? I’ll be happy for that friend. And I’ll buy her book. And I’ll read it. And I’ll love it. Maybe I’ll laugh (if it’s meant to be funny). Maybe I’ll laugh even if it’s not meant to be funny. All I know is I have to stop fighting the current. I’m going to let go of the branch and float on down the river.
And I’ll be laughing the whole way down.