I am a pilot’s daughter. I grew up in the back of planes, in cargo boxes and in hangars. I remember looking forward to when my dad would come home from work; I would hug him and deeply breathe in the smell of oil, engines and aircraft. I still love those smells.

I am the grown daughter of a pilot now. I’m 23. I’m alone. I’m trying (unsuccessfully) to sleep in a twin size bed. My mind is racing. Metaphorically speaking, I’m the pilot now. I’ve lifted off from the runway of childhood and now I’m monitoring a number of gauges, knobs and meters while charting my path through life.

To take that metaphor a step further, it seems to me like there are people and experiences in life that provide feedback much like a gauge or a meter would to a pilot. I feel as though I should grab at the mic and announce on the intercom, “Hold on to your hats, folks, we’re in for a bumpy ride!” But it’s just me on this plane.

I’ve gotten some harsh feedback lately. And you know what? That’s okay. But it kind of sucks. Makes you feel kinda crappy. But the things you feel shitty about are learning opportunities. So let me share with you some of the shit I’ve learned the hard way recently:

Not everybody wants to be your friend. Like this guy I work with right now. Sometimes I get the feeling that he hates my guts. Like, a lot. But you know what? That’s okay. We’re both grown ass adults and this isn’t kindergarten anymore. Do I feel shitty about it? Only every time I see him. But the second that I realize that I don’t need his approval, I feel better. I do my thing. And that’s good enough.

Sometimes past relationships will go up in flames. It’s kind of fun to watch fireworks until you realize that it’s your personal life that’s on fire. Okay, maybe that was a little dramatic. But — deep breath — I recently tried to remedy the situation that inspired a previous post about being the type of girl that sucks at being friends with other girls. And it absolutely did not work. And part of me wants to believe that I’m just “that type of girl that can never be friends with girls” but then I realize how stupid that is and that I have to learn from my mistakes. What I learned? Sometimes being spontaneous and open to life experiences involves saying yes and sometimes it involves saying no. Sometimes when you say no, you upset people you care about. Sometimes, they don’t forgive you. Again — deep breath — you accept that you did your best and move on with your life.

And just like that, a couple hundred words later, I feel as though I’ve gotten through some turbulence and can get on to trying hard not to make the same mistakes. I’m a pilot’s daughter. I’m brave but sometimes I lose my way. But it’s all gonna be okay.

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4 thoughts on “Basically Amelia Earhart

  1. Malory,
    I always read your blogs. Because I am Tim’s grandmother I had decided not to write my thoughts.
    This one touched me so deeply, I just had to respond!!!!…your writing, the analogy of being the pilot of your life, the pain of having to work with someone who doesn’t like you and most of all the loss of a girlfriend.
    I don’t want to tell you that you’re young and blah, blah, blah.

    So, what do I want to say? I’ll try.

    I’m not young! I have learned that the terrible pain we feel with the loss of one friend is more powerful than joy we feel with the friend who stands beside us. Why the negative outweighs the positive, I’m still trying to understand and overcome. But just knowing that is the way our brain works, is helpful to me. I ask myself for the evidence.

    Here is an example. My daughter, is going through a difficult situation at work. One person dislikes her.
    Her students (she is a college teacher) for 18 years have evaluated her and another teacher as “best teachers.” All the teachers she works with are friendly and like her and a few have become good friends. But, the pain of the ONE hurts terribly……while the pleasure of the many who like and respect her give her no comfort.
    WHY!!!!

    Malory, you definitely ARE the pilot of your life. You will fly.. You will make many landings up and down. YOU WILL NOT CRASH!!!!! You are beautiful. (I met you once). You are brave. (Maybe too brave). YOU ARE AWESOME. (Tim said that). AND …… I FIND I MUST SAY THIS……
    YOU ARE YOUNG….

    REGARDLESS OF WHAT HAPPENS WITH YOU AND TIM……..I KNOW I WOULD LOVE TO HAVE YOU AS A FRIEND….

    KEEP WRITING
    LIZ BLACK

    Like

    1. I absolutely LOVE that you wrote this. I can’t even begin to tell you how much it means to me each time someone tells me they appreciate my work. I try to write candidly about thoughts and feelings that I think other people experience. Life’s a journey and we’re all always learning. Thank you so much. And thank you so much for just being. I’m in love with the Black clan.

      Like

  2. Such a great blog. Throughout life you will certainly come across people that you like and don’t like and vice versa. That is totally ok, we all can’t like everyone(as much as I would like to). But also how can anyone not like you!!

    Also it is good to say no to people, even people you care about. I used to say yes to everything and it really is not good to do that. eventually you will run yourself into the ground!

    As you get older too your bond with female friends will become so much stronger. Girls rule! Especially for climbing with! You are awesome and don’t ever forget that!

    Liked by 2 people

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