F is For Flat to Fortunate

No, not the flat prairies that kids dread driving through on hot sticky summers in Canada.

No, not the flat stomach that you wake up to and rejoice.

No, not the flat tire that occurred in the freezing cold just before another winter storm would hit.

Just that flat feeling that shows up, without explanation, and leaves you winded as you walk up the stairs.

Determined to go from flat to fit, I venture outside to run with my husband.

There. is. one. problem. to. this. solution.

I HATE running.

So quickly I retreat, retrace, reneg and return to C is for Cranky.

Grumpily, I tell my husband to go ahead. I remind him I hate running.

He doesn’t need reminding.

I walk. I talk to myself. I tell myself to think positively. I try to refocus, reflect on all that is good in my life.

And then I am home. Still flat, I look at a car pulling up across the street. It parks in that driveway. The driveway that has been haunting me for the last few months.

The mom gets out. She walks up to her daughter’s house which has now been sold. She examines the garden and walks around inspecting. She does this a lot.

I wonder what she is looking for. It makes me so sad.

I walk into my own house right across the street. I look out my window.The woman is still outside, puttering around.

I see my daughter, writing on the couch, and I go from flat to fortunate. In a glance. Guiltily.

(Sadly, the woman’s daughter took her life a few months ago. It has been very hard to watch the parents come and go as they have prepared the house for sale. It makes my heart ache for what they must be going through. We didn’t know them as we were new. But we still feel the pain as parents. Selfishly, I am relieved to be moving shortly, at least for a while, as the house is such a tragic reminder of a girl lost and a family in sorrow. Maybe when we return, a new family will bring new light to it. I really don’t know. But for me, I relish a new window; one with less pain.)

Thanks for listening. Cheryl ( A to Z )


  1. uncle gerry · April 14, 2015


    Liked by 1 person

  2. njmagas · April 7, 2015

    I love running. Or, I USED to love running, and then I gained too many pounds for running to be useful (combination of a course of illness and injury and new video games ๐Ÿ˜› ). Now, like you, when I go jogging with y partner, I lag behind while she sprints away. DAMNIT! My solution is… I don’t run. I stair climb. There’s a temple behind my house that has 250 stairs to get to the top. It’s also seated on a steep incline, so I have to huff up the road to even get to the first step. I take it as fast as I can, and I usually end up jogging up the last 20 or thirty anyway. And the best part is there are no people to watch me wheezing as I haul my beached walrus body up to the top!

    N J Magas, author


    • lovetotrav · April 7, 2015

      Too funny. Maybe I will find an “out of the way” temple in Cairo to climb too. Ha Ha. I seriously doubt anything is out of the way or isolated there. I have only liked running on one day when the running gods aligned and every other day I have detested it. So I caved and am back to walking instead. The temple workout sounds tough. You could make it into an exercise video for expats! Cheryl

      Liked by 1 person

      • njmagas · April 7, 2015

        Walking is just as good, in my opinion. low impact, but still activates almost all the muscles in your body. Plus, it’s a lot easier (for me) to think when I’m walking. When I’m running the only thing that occupies my mind is, “Breathe, BREATHE, just two more minutes on this set. What, WHAT?! Four minutes still?! I forgot to start the timer?!”


      • lovetotrav · April 7, 2015

        I so agree. I can just hear myself huffing and puffing and I find that so distracting and annoying. Maybe if I could run and not breathe I would be a happier runner. ๐Ÿ™‚


      • njmagas · April 8, 2015

        Do you use a running trainer app? I use Couch to 5K and it’s pretty decent. It gives you nice intervals between running and walking and slowly increases the running portion.


      • lovetotrav · April 8, 2015

        Yes, that is what we were doing yesterday. Until I had my cranky fit and my husband proceeded without me. I think I was not yet in the mindset to begin. Maybe in a week or two I will try again, in the meantime, I walk.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. tara tyler · April 7, 2015

    what a tragedy, that started out as a harmless flat run. suicide is one of the worst, unexplainable occurences. i hope you find more joy on your next venture (and hope the family who lost can cope and be comforted.)


    • lovetotrav · April 7, 2015

      Thank you for stopping by. I am sure our next venture will be chaotic (Cairo) but hopefully not as sad. Cheryl


  4. doreeweller · April 7, 2015

    How sad for them and the community. Tragedies like these do help us to re-examine our own blessings though.


    • lovetotrav · April 7, 2015

      Yes, it is so sad as the woman had two small children as well. Fortunately they weren’t there when it happened. And I agree. It does remind me very quickly of my own blessings.


  5. Sarah Ferguson · April 7, 2015

    Oh, I can’t even imagine how hard this is for them – it would be hard enough to watch from across the street, but to be in this situation…


  6. g · April 7, 2015

    I can’t imagine the pain. Just thinking of it hurts.


  7. La Sabrosona · April 7, 2015

    This reminds me of an excellent Korean film in which a young girl hangs herself because she was bullied in school. There was one bully in particular. So the mother of the deceased girl moved in right next door to the bully’s family and in her passive aggressive way torments the family; making sure that the bully feels shame etc
    I don’t remember the name of the movie.


  8. A Journey With You · April 7, 2015

    Oh suicide leaves a pain that is different from other deaths. I feel for the parents. This is an excellent post. A sad reminder to me, but excellent all the same.


    • lovetotrav · April 7, 2015

      Thank you. It has been so hard to watch this unfold from across the street.


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