Day 168 of 366: Blog Challenge 2012

Hello all

Do you know that ‘let-down’ feeling one has after a big event takes place? Well, I had it after our ‘Marathon at the Airport’  was over yesterday and we came home to nothing much. Everything seemed boring after that.

I needn’t have worried however, for a call came through around 2pm from a very excited Maria in Darwin airport.

I was surprised at these Pillow Pets

We came off last Mum, she said “mainly because I wanted to have time to get all our belongings together” (at this point I did remember; how could I forget those huge pillow pets?) “and guess who was waiting there to greet us?” I couldn’t begin to imagine who, but before I had a chance to think, Maria almost yelled down the phone: STEVE!”

The thermometer on ‘let down’ took a huge surge upwards and then both of us were screaming down the phone. Steve – Maria’s husband – had flown in from Dili in Timor to surprise her in Darwin.

Oh, it made my day. I ended up sailing through after that surprise and couldn’t get the grin off my face for the rest of the day.

This morning, Maria was the one in for a surprise when I phoned out of the blue at 5.30 am Darwin time (6 am ours) to say a last farewell from Australian soil. Thinking I had lost my marbles, she said “What are you doing awake at this hour Mum?!” (You might note I am not known for rising early so the surprise was genuine).

All this got me thinking today about ‘SURPRISES’. Don’t we all love a really good genuine surprise? I am not talking about unpleasant ones here, that subject is for another day. This is the surprise that lifts you out of the mundane and takes you into a place of adrenaline and pure pleasure.

Have you noticed when this happens that we relive the ‘delight of the surprise’ for hours and if it is a ‘big’ one …  for days! Nothing else seems important anymore because the surprise has done its work of increasing our endorphin levels. Happiness extraordinaire. Oh, a researcher could have a field day with this one.

Babies feature in surprises!

So I put the question to my Facebook Friends: “Steve surprised Maria at Darwin airport yesterday, what has been the best surprise that you’ve every had? Let me know … “

These are the responses so far:

  • Melissa Newell Finding out I’m going to be a mum 🙂
  • Daniel Ross Easy one…The surprise of not knowing what sex Isaac was going to be!
  • Jenni Watt My family giving me a “surprise ” birthday party…. Am not in to surprises as I am a control freak, they got away with that one and it was wonderful ….
  • Terrie Bahlmann Like Melissa, finding out I was going to be a mum! : ) xxx

I was surprised that a few involved having children and only one a surprise birthday – I had expected more of these, but it is not one that I have ever experienced.

The Oxford dictionary has many definitions for the word SURPRISE but I like these two:

    1. to strike with a sudden feeling of wonder at something unexpected, extraordinary etc. and …
    2. a sudden and unexpected event, action gift etc.

In the case of children, I think the use of the word “wonder” fits because you suddenly feel you are walking on clouds.  It is huge! With regards to surprises as in birthdays or a gift or an action, it is a different kind of wonder really, like wondering how they kept it from you without you knowing (yes Jenni YOU the control freak!) but yet loving that they did at the same time because it shows they love you.

In my own life, I have had two surprises pertaining to children and one pertaining to an event that was long-awaited. When I was having Maria, I was sure I was having  a boy as my sisters had seven between them and I expected the same. I was shocked when they whispered to me in my hazy post-baby state “you have a little girl.” When I woke I thought it was a dream!

Then when I had Daniel, the opposite happened. I was sure that I was the girl in the family who would have ‘the girls’ and when I came out of my caesarean Geoff was saying with delight “we have a boy!” I was surprised! Geoff, on the other hand was hanging from the rafters with happiness. When the shock wore off, I was overjoyed too. How lucky was I having the pidgeon pair?

Finally …

My other surprise concerns that son of mine whose name appears on this page: Daniel. It was the day he came to see me in 2002. I was a bit worried but I need not have been. For my son had come to show me the engagement ring he had bought for Belinda as he was planning the big proposal that night.

I did became emotional but I tried not to show it; all I showed was my joy. My commitment-phob son was doing the unthinkable! Such a lovely surprise completely out of the blue.

Geoff says the surprise that he most remembers was getting an unexpected promotion in his sixties, something he never dreamt possible at his age. A nice story isn’t it?

Maria said she cried when she realised it was Steve waiting for her. I have found that this is not an uncommon reaction. Joy and tears often come together and that dichotomy takes us by surprise also.

All in all, we are funny human beings aren’t we?

Until tomorrow

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