“Summer. It was so nice talking to you. I hope you pursue yachting and wish you the very best.” I say this while standing to give this girl— a girl I literally met less than ten minutes before— a hug. We had sat in a row, with another woman, waiting for our cars to be cleaned at the Southern California car wash. I had woken up with an eye infection, due to lack of sleep and stress from reaching my max capacity with flying. I was worn out, preoccupied with loneliness, financial frustrations, and tasks to be done. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to talk to anyone, but I didn’t know if I had the energy to “take care” of one more person.
Private jet flying— although incredibly rewarding and worth all of the effort— had a way of stuffing itself, and everyone else, in front of my own self-care. When I flew, I would forget to feed myself, had trouble sleeping enough, and neglected almost everything unrelated to what my plane was, who my passengers were, and where and when my pilots wanted to meet. The other day while sourcing catering items for the trip home, I found myself grocery shopping and calling restaurants and stressing over if my pilots would eat this or that, without ever once considering what I wanted. I never do. I just forget about me. When I fly, I take care of everyone else first. I am an afterthought.
And so, on a Wednesday like today, I am recouping. I go back to eating, working out, and resting. I stop looking beyond what someone next to me might need. I stop reading body language. I stop listening, anticipating and worrying. I retreat to my headphones, podcasts, and endless bubble baths. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to talk to this girl Summer, I just had turned off all awareness. I had forgotten that something beautifully touching could happen if I woke up to the fact that our lives are meant to be lived for others. That we are meant to touch and reach and impact those around us for the better— even on the days when you do not want to be there.
- Even on the days when you wish you were ANYWHERE BUT the airplane aisle serving diet cokes as a flight attendant.
- Even when you are so tired of sourcing catering and figuring out all of the details of someone else’s dream vacation.
- Even when you think you deserve a break from the world around you.
The thing is— as a flight attendant, you will always be a number. You will always be a replaceable pretty face. Someone else can train to fill your space and fit into your uniform, but what an airline or private jet company or the world will never be able to do is replicate is the way YOU show up in every moment.
You are needed for this moment and for this day and for THAT job and airline you are going for— you can bring more to that space than the job role specifies. Trust your worth. Trust the timing. TRUST THIS MOMENT.
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YOU are so valuable and important to someone’s day. Open your eyes and receive the blessing waiting for you by showing kindness, smiling brightly, and searching for moments to bring your spirit to your job. Build moments in what you do that will have someone walking away from an interaction with you saying, “Wow. She was ‘different.’ There was something about the way he spoke. She truly brightened my day.”
As I walk out of the car wash’s waiting area; into the crisp air and bright sunshine, I smile to myself with gratitude. “Thank you, God, for letting me be part of this moment with Summer. Thank you for reminding me that this life is about more than just me.”
You didn’t get a job as a flight attendant just for the flight benefits; just so you could travel. You weren’t given this opportunity so that you can have a better schedule or build seniority. You arrived here because the world needs you to fill a void that only your spirit can fill. You can always be replaced in a job, but your presence in that job is what will set you apart from the other uniforms. If you think about it— how amazing is it that, as a flight attendant, you have the chance to come in contact with hundreds of people daily? Hundreds of people looking for one person to show them kindness. One person to listen for just a second. One person to show that they care.
Care about people. You never know how that energy will change your own life.
I know some days we do not want to show up. We don’t want to be ‘there.’ You’re allowed those days. I bet you, someone will show up for you on the days when you just need a reminder of hope. Pay that beauty and kindness forward when you have the strength. Your job is a beautiful opportunity to create moments of good within all of this crazy chaos.
Summer and I ended up reading today’s page of my devotional book together. She thanked me for reading it to her aloud, in the carwash, on a random Wednesday afternoon. It’s amazing how life constantly works to remind us that every person deserves love, kindness, and hope. Ironically, I walked away from those few minutes with Summer feeling like I should thank her for showing me my place in the world. That, as uncertain as my career is, romantic relationships are, and future might be, there is a purpose. That my breathing life matters even in the smallest of moments. That is an incredibly humbling feeling which I am so grateful to experience. I’m so grateful to be alive (because there was a time when I didn’t want to live…which is an entirely different story in itself).
The universe moves in mysterious ways. Let’s wake up to it. Next time you step out into your day’s ‘To-Do List,’ watch for the ways you can change your immediate airplane world, and watch how that changes you.
You are meant to live an epic life